This OAU Student Built A Car That Runs On Solar And Wind Energy

With scraps and ₦1 million, Segun Oyeyiola is about to change the world.

Segun Oyeyiola, a final year engineering student at the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, has successfully converted a petrol engine Volkswagen Beetle into a car that runs on solar and wind energy. Using scraps and materials that have cost him close to ₦1 million, Oyeyiola has spent the past year working on the project which, in his own words, is driven by the need to reduce global warming:

“I wanted to reduce carbon dioxide emission[s] going to our atmosphere that lead to climate change or global warming which has become a new reality, with deleterious effect: seasonal cycles are disrupted, as are ecosystems; and agriculture, water needs and supply, and food production are all adversely affected.” — Email from Oyeyiola to Co.Exist

The process of retrofitting the Volkswagen Beetle involved mounting a large solar panel on the roof of the car and installing a wind turbine under the bonnet. As the car moves and air passes through its body, the wind turbine charges a sizeable battery that keeps the car running. Oyeyiola also had to rebuild the car’s suspension to bear the considerable weight of the battery. All of that was not easy, as he had to deal with the challenges of finding the best materials to work with and negative criticism from people who think he should be doing better things with his time.

The car is basically a working prototype, considering that its battery’s four to five-hour charging time makes it unsuitable for everyday use, but Oyeyiola whose final exams end on May 15 is determined to “keep improving on it, until it becomes Nigeria’s future car.”

How are you impacting your world?

5 Responses to “This OAU Student Built A Car That Runs On Solar And Wind Energy”

  1. May 13, 2014 at 4:08 pm, Mufutau Gbadamosi said:

    Keep on plodding
    Let me know when you have something for the mass market l will be one of your first customers or investors!


  2. May 14, 2014 at 12:26 pm, genuinely said:

    “The wind turbine charges a rechargeable battery- not sizeable battery”. With this system, the battery, solar panel and the wind turbine replaces the engine: their combined wait is less than that of the engine hence there may be no need for redesigning the system; but if there is any, it should be aimed at bearing the less weight and not the other way round.
    In the conventional car, the alternator charges the battery but the battery is not meant for ‘moving’ the car , in this car the wind turbine is more or less a fan-like device which rotates to charge a battery in addition to the solar energy, and the battery is the prime mover, a good idea I must say.He should look at the power requirements of a car and see if the power from the solar combined with the that of the wind turbine (fan) will be sufficient. He should start with a smaller prototype, probably with only two seats and use lighter materials in the body of the car.


  3. May 15, 2014 at 6:27 am, chibuzorn said:

    @genuinely:disqus captures its well enough, you need to research on if you can find more lightweight material for the major components to achieve the same objective -solar panel, batteries and wind turbine. build a smaller prototype for testing and a Proof of concept then take it from there


    • December 23, 2015 at 8:56 pm, Anonymous said:

      Nice one bro, God bless and improve your wisdom and knowledge. Work more on it, more power to your elbow. Keep it up bro, you will get there.


  4. November 05, 2015 at 8:03 am, Olukayode said:

    Rome was not built in a day, keep on improving on the car, you can start with lighter weight, just dont retire but refire and you will surely get there.


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