Ford’s New C-Max Concept Is Serious About Solar Power

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The idea of a solar-powered vehicle has been around for a considerable amount of time, though in reality, the application of solar power to a vehicle hasn’t quite panned out in the way that it needs to in order to become a viable means of transportation. This hasn’t stopped companies from working toward that goal, however, as Ford (NYSE:F) believes it may have a solution for helping solar power become a more feasible source of automotive power.

Based on its C-Max Energi crossover-hatchback people carrier, Ford has outfitted the roof with solar panels, a move that has already been done and is available on some cars as an option. However, what makes Ford’s concept system special is a concentrator that essentially performs like a magnifying glass under the sun.

This unit would take the broad sun rays and concentrate them onto the vehicle’s roof with increased intensity. Through this method, the power produced would theoretically be enough to recharge the car’s battery pack — whereas now, installed solar panels can do little more than power the HVAC system of the car, or the stereo.

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