Think of it as the "Endless Summer" for the green set.
A PBS-produced documentary about the Swiss teacher who drove his solar-powered taxi around the world has been released on DVD. The hour-long "Solartaxi: Around the World With the Sun" is now available on Amazon for $16.99.

The film chronicles Swiss teacher Louis Palmer, who built a solar-powered two-seat taxi that towed a trailer covered in photovoltaic cells and started driving it around the world during the summer of 2007. Palmer even affixed a taxi sign to offer rides for anyone interested in part of the journey.

Over an 18-month period, Palmer drove the taxi more than 32,000 miles, including a trip through parts of the U.S. in 2008. While most of the voyage was made on sun rays, Palmer occasionally had to plug in for a recharge when cloud-cover prevented the car from powering up. That's still enough to qualify for the "green roadtrip" title and it is an inspiring look at what's possible with a lot of ambition and mostly free energy.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 8 Comments
      marcopolo
      • 2 Years Ago
      Interesting and obviously great fun! But, in reality such events are pretty irrelevant, and tend to be quoted to 'prove' unrealistic expectations. The term 'Taxi" is a little disingenuous, implying that a 2 seat light weight vehicle is the equivalent to a London cab or New York Taxi ! Only last week, I heard this raised in argument by an earnest young group of solar supporters, who were convinced that Solar powered vehicles could replace all gasoline vehicles, proved by someone driving a solar powered "Taxi-Cab " 'round the world ! Between April 1884 to December 1886, Thomas (Tom) Stevens was the first person to circle the globe by Penny-Farthing bicycle. Interesting and certainly courageous, but it didn't see the Penny-Farthing become the planet's dominant form of transport !
        Anne
        • 2 Years Ago
        @marcopolo
        Yes, but solar powered vehicles *are* the future: http://www.nsolar.be/images/carport-tesla.jpg ;)
      Ryan
      • 2 Years Ago
      Sounds like a fun trip.
      Tysto
      • 2 Years Ago
      This is quite an inspiration. I foresee a number of people doing similar things in the near future to demonstrate how practical electric cars really are. Once California's fast chargers are in place, I'd like to see someone drive a Tesla Model S from Seattle to LA while a comparably-sized ICE car does the same trip. I bet the EV isn't more than a couple of hours slower at a cost way, way lower.
      Anne
      • 2 Years Ago
      Fachhochschule Bochum is doing a solar powered cirumnavigation at this moment. Only this is a 'real' car without a trailer for the solar panels. Homepage: http://www.hochschule-bochum.de/en/solarcar.html
        Spec
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Anne
        Well as long as he towed the trailer everywhere, I don't think that is cheating.
          Anne
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Spec
          I don't remember having accused him of cheating. Never mind, next time I will be more careful in choosing my words.
      Anne
      • 2 Years Ago
      And to round it off, around the world in a solar powered boat: http://www.planetsolar.org/