Master Plan, Part Deux

  1. Create a low volume car, which would necessarily be expensive
  2. Use that money to develop a medium volume car at a lower price
  3.  Use that money to create an affordable, high volume car
  4. Provide solar power. No kidding, this has literally been on our website for 10 years.

So, in short, Master Plan, Part Deux is:

  • Create stunning solar roofs with seamlessly integrated battery storage
  • Expand the electric vehicle product line to address all major segments
  • Develop a self-driving capability that is 10X safer than manual via massive fleet learning
  • Enable your car to make money for you when you aren’t using it


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Photovoltaic Energy vs Nuclear Energy – Cost Advantage!

PARIS — Solar photovoltaic systems have long been painted as a clean way to generate electricity, but expensive compared with other alternatives to oil, like nuclear power. No longer. In a “historic crossover,” the costs of solar photovoltaic systems have declined to the point where they are lower than the rising projected costs of new nuclear plants, according to a paper published this month.

“Solar photovoltaics have joined the ranks of lower-cost alternatives to new nuclear plants,” John O. Blackburn, a professor of economics at Duke University, in North Carolina, and Sam Cunningham, a graduate student, wrote in the paper, “Solar and Nuclear Costs — The Historic Crossover.”

New solar-cell efficiency record set

Here’s a seemingly simple solar power factoid: the sun bathes Earth with enough energy in one hour (4.3 x 1020 joules) to more than fill all of humanity’s present energy use in a year (4.1 x 1020 joules). So how to convert it? In the world of solar energy harvesting, there’s a constant battle between cost and efficiency. On the one hand, complex and expensive triple-junction photovoltaic cells can turn more than 40 percent of the (specially concentrated) sunlight that falls on them into electricity. On the other, cheap, plastic solar cells under development convert less than 5 percent.

Bringing the cost of just the photovoltaic cells down to about $1 per watt is the magic number solar manufacturers are aiming for, figuring that will make them cost-competitive with electricity produced by burning natural gas. Some manufacturers of thin film cells (less efficient but cheaper), such as First Solar, claim to have reached that mark, with efficiencies around 10 percent. Finding a way to further boost the ability to convert sunlight into electricity while also lowering costs to this level would herald the true dawn for solar power—something anticipated since photovoltaics were discovered.

0.3% of the Sahara could power up all EU!

EU Officials: Just 0.3% Of Sahara’s Sun Energy Could Power Entire EU

The largest fully industrialized populus in the world could be entirely powered by a small fraction of solar desert energy, according to new plan.
“If we could realise that in the Mediterranean, for example in southern Italy, this would correspond to electricity prices in the range of 15 cents per kWh, something below what the average consumer is paying.”
However, before the plan could help the EU meet its target of cutting greenhouse gas emissions by 20 per cent by 2020, much time and investment is needed, the scientists working on the project say.
But they estimate that with an investment of around €450bn (£356bn) it could produce 100 GW by 2050, more than the combined electricity output from all sources in Britain.

Concentrator Photovoltaic – 230 watts per cm2

IBM scientists are using a large lens to concentrate the Sun’s power, capturing a record 230 watts onto a centimeter square solar cell, in a technology known as concentrator photovoltaics, or CPV. That energy is then converted into 70 watts of usable electrical power, about five times the electrical power density generated by typical cells using CPV technology in solar farms.