Al Akhawayn Improves its Hybrid Car Prototype
Ifrane, April 19, 2012 – After its first hybrid car prototype was unveiled on February 21, 2012, Al Akhawayn completed today work on an enhanced version of the vehicle.
This hybrid car prototype, built by the Maintenance Department at the University, is reportedly the first in Morocco which utilizes both solar and kinetic energy. The car is equipped with solar panels that harness the energy from the sun and induce movement. The rotation of the wheels on the ground transforms solar energy into kinetic energy, which also powers the car.
Two months have passed since Al Akhawayn’s first domestically manufactured hybrid car was out on a test drive around campus. Several developments have been made to come out with Prototype No.2.
Prototype No.2 extensively uses fiberglass, reinforced composites. The first prototype was made out of steel, a far heavier and less versatile material. Now 95% of the car body and seat blocs are in fiber glass, which has dropped the vehicle’s weight from 280 kg (steel) to 90 kg (fiber glass) and has made it more weather resistant.
The new prototype has also been redesigned with a four-to-six-seat capacity instead of two. It uses LED instead of halogen lights. Its rear and front bumpers are designed and manufactured in composite materials.
“This second prototype will allow us to conduct the final series of mechanical tests and compare the expected behavior with the real one,” said Hatim Naitlho, Director of Grounds and Maintenance and Coordinator of the Hybrid Car Project at Al Akhawayn University. “If need be, we will enhance the structure and will hopefully produce the first hybrid car this coming summer.”
To read more about how this project’s idea originated and about the first prototype, click here.