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Old 01-14-2009, 09:40 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Question School Project Help

I need to use a peltier cooler (TEC) for cooling the inside of a solar car. Are there any recommendations on what size I should use and any sites I can get some more information (such as temperature, voltage, standard operatiing temperatures, etc).? thanks for any help

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Old 01-14-2009, 10:01 AM   #2 (permalink)
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TEC's are very very inefficient. An electric motor driving a conventional AC system would be more effective from a power consumption point of view.

Plan on using 90 watts of power for every 10 watts of heat you remove from the interior of the car using TECs
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Old 01-14-2009, 12:53 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Maybe you need to give us some more information. Is your project goal to use the Peltier cooler for something, or to somehow keep a solar car cool?

In any case, you want to start from the basics, like the (in)efficiency of the Peltier cooler. Look at how much power can be generated from solar cells, how much it takes to run a car, how much heat needs to be removed to keep it cool...

Personally, I'd think about insulation - keeping heat out (or in, in the winter) before working on cooling.
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Old 01-14-2009, 05:25 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jamesqf View Post
Maybe you need to give us some more information. Is your project goal to use the Peltier cooler for something, or to somehow keep a solar car cool?

In any case, you want to start from the basics, like the (in)efficiency of the Peltier cooler. Look at how much power can be generated from solar cells, how much it takes to run a car, how much heat needs to be removed to keep it cool...

Personally, I'd think about insulation - keeping heat out (or in, in the winter) before working on cooling.
Its for a competition which takes place in the summer, so I'm mainly focusing on cooling tand not heating. Also, the solar cells will only power the motor, while the cooler will be powered by a supplemental battery. Sorry if my first post was not very clear.
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Old 01-14-2009, 07:17 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jamesqf View Post
Personally, I'd think about insulation - keeping heat out (or in, in the winter) before working on cooling.
I was going to suggest the same thing.

Look at reflective surfaces materials and colours for solid areas of the vehicle and tints for the windows.

Keep in mind too the road will add to the heat gain so under vehicle reflective materials may also be needed.

This will help decrease the demand for cooling and the associated power demand.

God luck with the project.

Cheers , Pete.
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Old 01-15-2009, 01:05 PM   #6 (permalink)
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nastynas, if you're looking to just keep the driver cool, there were some interesting ideas discussed here. Maybe some of them will get your creative juices flowing! Good luck with the project, and keep us up to date on it!
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Old 01-18-2009, 06:16 AM   #7 (permalink)
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I doubt it is possible to cool the inside of a car using Peltier units.

If your goal is to keep the driver from suffering heat stroke in the summer Virginia heat, some frozen ice packs inside his clothes would be good. There are commercial "cool vests" available that use this technique to cool people working in hot environments, but you could make your own using a fishing vest.

I would look at a small electric pump to periodically inject a very fine water mist into the car. Evaporating water sucks huge amounts of heat out of the air and can be an effective people cooler. Your driver would be cooled by the cooler air produced and/or by some cool mist in the face. I even remember seeing an infomercial about a small battery-powered mister that fit around the user's neck.

Last edited by instarx; 01-18-2009 at 06:39 AM..
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Old 01-18-2009, 06:35 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by instarx View Post
I doubt it is possible to cool the inside of a car using Peltier units.

If it is your part of the project to cool the driver of the car, I would first look at a small electric pump to periodically inject a very fine water mist into the car. Evaporating water sucks huge amounts of heat out of the air and can be an effective people cooler. Your driver would be cooled by the cooler air produced and/or by some cool mist in the face.

If your goal is to keep the driver from suffering heat stroke in the summer Virginia heat, some frozen ice packs inside his clothes would also be good. There are "cool vests" available that use this technique to cool people working in hot environments, but you could make your own using a fishing vest.
You definitely want to cool just the driver--a small refrigeration unit that pumps cooled air directly into the driver's jumpsuit might be the way to go... and find a driver who understands that this isn't a luxury cruise. :-)

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