Undated: Solar-powered car (update*)

Dr. Charles Alexander Escoffery develops and demonstrates a solar-powered car: a 1912 Baker electric with 10,640 silicon cells arrayed on the roof that convert sunlight to electricity. On a full charge the car can run for 3 hours at a top speed of 20 miles per hour.

* Dr. Escoffery, who is still alive, sent along this additional information: "The car was a renovated 1912 Baker Electric with a panel of photovoltaic cells on the roof and lead acid batteries front and rear. It was a project of The International Rectifier Corporation to publicize their photocells and although power output of the cells was only 100w, it attracted world-wide attention with people believing gasoline (petrol) would no longer be needed to power their automobiles. The car was demonstrated in Chicago, New York City, Rome, Copenhagen, Amsterdam and London."

* Article from Science and Mechanics magazine (August 1960): @
* Other solar-powered devices in magazines (1920s-1950s): @
* "Solar Energy Back in the Day" (Life magazine slideshow): @
* "The Quest for New Solar Batteries" (New Scientist article, August 1960): @
* Footage of Escoffery's car: @ and @ and @
* More about Baker cars at electric vehicle sites: @ and @

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