Potential and Challenges of Vehicle Integrated Photovoltaics for Passenger Cars
We provide a general overview on vehicle integrated photovoltaics (VIPV) for passenger cars. Historic examples are reviewed to demonstrate that VIPV can provide an economic benefit due to the current and unique setting of very low solar cell costs and ambitious goals for electric vehicles. Subsequently, four guiding questions are addressed: 1. Which benefits are offered by VIPV, 2. Which potential costs are related to VIPV, 3. What are the challenges of VIPV and 4. What is the future potential of VIPV? It is shown that with a typical roof (1.7 - 2 m²) of a car equipped with solar cells, a solar driving distance of up to 1900-3400 km/year can be achieved and the cost for manufacturing such a solar module is estimated to be below 120 e/piece. Furthermore, using the full potential of solar integration in cars, a solar driving distance in the range of the yearly average driving distance of passenger cars in Germany (15,000 km/a) could be theoretically covered by VIPV.