All participants of the 2019 Sun Trip Tour

The organization of the Sun Trip has just published the profile of the 55 participants of the Sun Trip Tour 2019. They come from France, Switzerland, Belgium, USA, Italy, Germany. They are 4 years old to 72 years old!
This summer, there will be 12 official teams, 8 of which are made up of EDF and EDF Renouvelables employees.

 The battery of my solar bike connected in bluetooth!

It was at the Sun Trip 2019 and 2020 preparation weekend that I discovered this innovation. Thanks to Ralf!
So I decided to replace the BMS of my battery (battery management system) by a model with a bluetooth communication device. It cost me about thirty euros and a little more time than I imagined for the installation. Indeed, the connection pads of the BMS were different and I had to use the soldering iron.

No matter, I am satisfied with the result: now, I can know everything about the status of my battery, in real time, on the dedicated smartphone application. I still added a switch: it allows me to turn off the bluetooth module to avoid unnecessary discharge of the battery, for example during winter storage.

New on the Solarduino Bike: version 3.1 in test!

March 2019 version
Solarduino Bike v3.1
April 2019 version

Apparently nothing has changed between the March version and the April version 3.1. I simply changed the 3 solar panels! I replaced the old economics panels with high quality panels, made of the latest Sunpower ™ Maxeon photovoltaic cells, in the highest “class” or “grade”. Indeed, after manufacture, the cells are sorted into different classes according to their performance (Sunpower ™ uses a particular classification with well over 4 classes).

Result: 86% more solar energy for the same surface! What a difference !

I realize that in 2018 I thought to ride with 200Wc but in fact I had only 107Wc real. To have the same power, only 1 of the new panels would have been necessary, my trailer would have been 2 times shorter, lighter, hyper-manageable. In 2019, I chose to increase the panel area for more power. I wish: – to have more autonomy in case of cloudy weather with clearings, not to be worried about finishing a day “on the pedal”, – to ride faster if necessary, – to ride longer to travel greater distances.

A new type of solar bike on the Sun trip tour 2019!

Previous editions of the Sun trip have seen a wide variety of bikes: Classic straight bikes, tandems, but also recumbent bikes, recumbent tricycles, tandem-lying tricycles, cargo bikes, a seated/reclining tandem and, for a short appearance, a family bike with 4 wheels…
But no mobile bikes had yet participated. This will be the case this year with Bertrand Touzet: on July 6, he will start the Sun trip tour 2019 with his mobile bike whose fairing improves aerodynamics.
Bertrand makes us discover his vehicle in this short video:

The operation of a solar panel, by Christophe Dugué

It was during the course of preparation for Sun trip 2019 and 2020, in Lans-en-Vercors, that Christophe Dugué gave us important information about solar panels. In a very clear presentation, he explained to us the design and operation of a solar panel, the definition of its technical characteristics (maximum power) etc…
Christophe also informed us about practical aspects important for solar cyclists: the influence of temperature on performance, the impact of shading, the consequences of micro-cracks in photovoltaic cells…

The solar panels are its domain: Christophe works at Photowatt, a french manufacturer of solar panels for houses and buildings.
And most importantly, Christophe designed and manufactured prototype solar bike panels. These panels are both light and rigid, therefore resistant to the hazards of a solar bike trip. Christophe tested his first prototype during the Sun trip Tour 2017. Then Stéphane Bertrand was equipped for the Sun trip 2018, Lyon-Canton. For the Sun trip Tour 2019, Christophe will also equip his wife who will participate with him.

Preparation for Sun Trip 2019 and 2020

In mid April, the Sun trip team organized a weekend of preparation for the Sun trip. The aim of this internship was to help the participants better prepare themselves from a technical point of view:

  • understand the operation of solar panels,
  • know the different components of a bike with electric assistance (motor, controller, battery…),
  • share experiences from previous Sun trips,
  • prepare itineraries…

This weekend was intense and very rich, as well by the contributions of the speakers: Florian Bailly (creator of the Sun trip), Christophe Bayard (Association Vécolo), Christophe Dugué (Photowatt), Bernard Cauquil (Professor industrial technical and suntriper 2015 and 2020) and by exchanges between participants.
Thank you all!

Here is a video that translates the atmosphere of these encounters:

Follow the Sun trip tour 2019 participants on their social network!

Nationalities of participants at Sun trip 2019 50 participants from 7 different nationalities will participate in the 2019 Edition of the Sun trip tour, from July 6 to 20! Some of us have already met during a very fruitful weekend of preparation, organised by the Sun trip team, in Lans-en-Vercors in April.

Find each participant on his social network or blog: discover his preparation, his expectations, his enthusiasm before the big start…

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Luc Giros’ solar bike tour of Europe

During the Sun trip 2018, part of Lyon, Mickaël Joguet had put 50 days to arrive in Canton with his solar bike. He won the second place on the podium.
His bike will go back around the world, piloted by Luc giros (30 years old). On May 5, Luc will depart from La Rochelle and depart for an unusual tour of Europe for 17,000 km!

His project is to take out his veil on the three seas but also on the inland lakes. Its route will be along the southern coast of Europe in order to “kitesurfer” on most spots.
Luc will make his journey in complete energy autonomy: thanks to the sun, his bike can pull the trailer carrying his kite.
In addition to the sporting challenge, this journey will also be an opportunity for Luc to evoke his illness, the bladder exstrophy, a complex malformation of the urinary bladder.

Listen again : “my Poitou with Luc Giros 1/5”
Read more about Luc Giros’s adventure