Hyundai and Kia will outfit their cars with solar panels

Hyundai solar roof

Hyundai Motor Group is developing solar roof technology A semi-transparent version will allow solar charging on combustion engined vehicles Close

Certain cars from Kia and Hyundai are set to get the charging systems.

The first-generation system will be applied to hybrid models, and will feature a structure of silicon solar panels that are integrated into a standard auto roof.

The transparent solar panels can be built into the roof of the vehicles and even provide additional electrical energy for fuel-driven cars.

Hyundai and Kia will be the next brands to incorporate solar charging into their vehicles.

The solar charging technology is being developed to support the vehicle's main power source, improving mileage and reducing Carbon dioxide emissions.

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At some point, Hyundai and Kia will roll out a second-generation system, this one designated for vehicles with internal combustion engines. Hyundai estimates that these panels will be capable of charging the battery between 30 to 60 percent per day, depending upon weather conditions. This system can be incorporated with an existing panoramic sunroof, allowing natural flight to flood the cabin, whilst keeping the vehicle's battery charged with less dependency on the alternator.

The second stage will represent a more dramatic step forward: applying a semi-transparent solar roof system to ICE-powered vehicles in what Hyundai calls a world first. Hyundai says that's still in the midst of a pilot study, but if all goes to plan it would see solar panels installed onto both the roof and hood of a vehicle.

The company says that the third-generation system for battery electric vehicles is still now in testing and has now offered up no further details on this. Hyundai plans to roll out this feature in three generations, with the first coming in 2019.

The last will be for electric cars and is now in the testing phase. Power generated from this type of roof could be used for the air conditioning and seat heating systems. "The solar roof is the first of these technologies, and will mean that automobiles no longer passively consume energy, but will begin to produce it actively", said the developer of the technology Jeong-Gil Park, executive vice-president of the Engineering and Design Division of Hyundai Motor Group.

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