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Sunny cycle, powered by a Jamshedpurean

- Beldih Church alumnus & now Bangalore tech student part of team that is pedalling solar energy

A Jamshedpurean has made wheels that can roll in green change.

Automobile engineering student of Bangalore-based Dayanand Sagar College of Engineering Kumar Saurav Mahto, who hails from the steel city, is part of a four-member team that has designed a tricycle running on solar energy.

His college’s automobile department head G.S. Bhatt and project guide Prof Sathyanarayana A. helped him and and three other friends Joy Pansari, Prashant Pandey and Lalit Mahajan in their creative endeavour, Mahto said.

The teachers have christened the three-wheeler Solar Charged Motor Assisted Human Vehicle.

Quite a mouthful.

But the vehicle justifies its huge name. “It has a 400-watt motor run by 26 batteries, which are charged by solar panels installed on the top of the three-wheeler,” Mahto said, adding the tricycle did not use the conventional internal combustion engine and was environment-friendly.

“The two-seater vehicle is about 106 inches long and 123 inches wide. It has two wheels in the front and one at the back,” Mahto told The Telegraph from Bangalore.

“I feel happy to have contributed to developing the vehicle. It was our final-year project and we have pulled it off with flying colours,” said the Beldih Church alumnus.

He added the vehicle could be used on golf courses, green lungs like the Jubilee Park and on the premises of industrial plants.

The youth, who completed his higher secondary studies from Visakhapatnam-based Vikas Educational Institute in 2010, added the vehicle needed to be pedalled for about 10 km before the motor got fully charged. “Once the motor is charged, one needs to put in very less effort while pedalling. It is a very handy vehicle and costs about Rs 50,000,” Mahto said.

He added that as of now, the vehicle needed pedalling even after the motor was charged. “We are planning to put in a more powerful motor so that the vehicle runs on its own once the motor gets charged. If we can install a 1.5 kilowatt motor, that can happen,” Mahto said, adding that the three-wheeler weighed nearly 40kg.

The four-member team had first conceptualised the vehicle during an automobile designing competition conducted under Society of Automotive Engineers India at Chandigarh in October 2013.

“We had created a hybrid cycle during the competition, but it was raw in terms of ability, speed and design. Hence, we decided to improve on it. Giving shape to the tricycle with limited financial resources was the biggest challenge,” Mahto pointed out.

He added that the tech cradle was planning to rope in private stakeholders to manufacture the tricycle on large scale. “There have been discussions with Bosch Innovative Centre. We are also thinking of adding two more seats to the tricycle,” Mahto signed off.

Will you buy the solar cycle once it hits the market? Tell ttkhand@abpmail.com