Reuters - Video

EDITION: U.S. | U.K. | IN

Moments of Innovation

Hungarian train shines light on self-contained solar power

Tuesday, Aug 27, 2013 - 02:16

Aug. 28 - A nature reserve in central Hungary has become a testing ground for self-contained, solar-powered train travel. Engineers say the narrow gauge train is the first of its kind, and could become a template for larger train transport systems. Matthew Stock reports.

▲ Hide Transcript

View Transcript

This prototype railcar in Hungary was designed to be fully autonomous. It can generate and store its own energy, overcoming a key problem that has held back widespread use of electric vehicles - their limited range and the need to stop and recharge when the batteries run low. Named 'Vili', which translates literally as 'tram', the vehicle is covered by more than a hundred square feet of photovoltaic panels on its roof, which convert solar radiation into electricity. Laszlo Lengyel is from the Iploy Forest Company near Budapest where the railcar transports tourists through picturesque woodland. He says this self-powering railcar is the first of its kind. (SOUNDBITE) SPOKESPERSON FOR IPOLY FOREST CO., LASZLO LENGYEL, SAYING: "We are using a technology where we collect the solar energy and the electrical engines use this energy. This is the most special thing about it. There are examples around the world where railway vehicles use solar energy but from stations where solar panels are used. The fact that solar panels are installed on a moving vehicle and on top these are traditional type of solar panels, well, this is unique, I think." The train also boasts electric recovery brakes, similar to those used in Formula 1 racing cars, which recover and store part of the energy spent during braking and use it to propel the train later on. According to Sandor Suranyi from developers Ganzplan, the technology is ideal for narrow gauge transportation. (SOUNDBITE) CEO OF GANZPLAN, SANDOR SURANYI, SAYING: "The whole vehicle is one big invention because it doesn't have any equipment which would locally pollute the environment. There is no internal combustion engine, there is nothing that would pollute this strictly nature-protected area." The developers concede that problems like high maintenance costs need to be overcome. But if the figures add up, the engineers are hopeful they would be able to build a second, possibly larger vehicle, while also generating interest elsewhere in the world.

Hungarian train shines light on self-contained solar power

Tuesday, Aug 27, 2013 - 02:16

Top News »

Money »

Finding meaning in the S&P 500 2000 mark Finding meaning in the S&P 500 2000 mark

Mon, Aug 25, 2014 - (2:35)

S&P falls back from record high S&P falls back from record high

Fri, Aug 22, 2014 - (1:35)

S&P 500 closes at new high S&P 500 closes at new high

Thu, Aug 21, 2014 - (1:24)

S&P 500 just shy of record S&P 500 just shy of record

Wed, Aug 20, 2014 - (2:23)

Apple hits $100 a share Apple hits $100 a share

Tue, Aug 19, 2014 - (2:06)

Nasdaq closes at 14-year high Nasdaq closes at 14-year high

Mon, Aug 18, 2014 - (2:23)

Putin puts Wall Street in buying mood Putin puts Wall Street in buying mood

Thu, Aug 14, 2014 - (2:10)

We've become a promotional culture-RetailMeNot's Bodge We've become a promotional...

Thu, Aug 14, 2014 - (4:39)

Dow back to positive territory for year Dow back to positive territory for year

Wed, Aug 13, 2014 - (2:18)

The Exchange »

The Exchange: Hot commodity The Exchange: Hot commodity

Wed, Jul 16, 2014 - (9:25)

The Exchange: Constitutional crusade The Exchange: Constitutional crusade

Wed, Jun 25, 2014 - (11:35)

The Exchange: The value of money The Exchange: The value of money

Mon, Jun 02, 2014 - (9:53)

The Exchange: China’s Second Continent The Exchange: China’s Second Continent

Tue, May 27, 2014 - (9:35)

The Exchange: A master of business arts The Exchange: A master of business arts

Thu, May 08, 2014 - (8:24)

The Exchange: America's bankrupt cities The Exchange: America's bankrupt cities

Mon, May 05, 2014 - (8:52)

The Exchange: Let the rocking commence The Exchange: Let the rocking commence

Tue, Apr 08, 2014 - (8:13)

The Exchange: The Moneyball fallacies The Exchange: The Moneyball fallacies

Mon, Mar 24, 2014 - (9:54)

Is doing good a good business? Is doing good a good business?

Mon, Mar 17, 2014 - (7:38)

Reuters Investigates »

Re-homing victim: "I could have been dead" Re-homing victim: "I could have been dead"

Wed, Feb 19, 2014 - (8:24)

Cops and loggers in the Amazon rainforest Cops and loggers in the Amazon rainforest

Fri, Jan 10, 2014 - (4:01)

"Passed around like a dog" "Passed around like a dog"

Thu, Aug 29, 2013 - (6:32)

Adopted, then abandoned online Adopted, then abandoned online

Thu, Aug 29, 2013 - (13:21)

How the DEA keeps its secrets secret How the DEA keeps its secrets secret

Mon, Aug 05, 2013 - (1:36)

How education lost its role as the great equalizer - Reuters Investigates How education lost its role as the great...

Mon, Dec 17, 2012 - (7:52)

Jihad Jane: From abused child to American jihadist - Reuters Investigates Jihad Jane: From abused child to American...

Sat, Dec 08, 2012 - (10:01)

Jihad Jane: The order to kill - Reuters Investigates Jihad Jane: The order to kill - Reuters...

Sun, Dec 09, 2012 - (10:39)

Moving Pictures »

Mending dolls, teddies and hearts Mending dolls, teddies and hearts

Fri, Aug 22, 2014 - (3:12)

"Old timers" sail the Chesapeake Bay "Old timers" sail the Chesapeake Bay

Mon, Aug 11, 2014 - (2:27)

Burned memories Burned memories

Fri, Aug 08, 2014 - (3:02)

Images of July Images of July

Thu, Jul 31, 2014 - (1:20)

World Cup: passion on the pitch World Cup: passion on the pitch

Fri, Jul 11, 2014 - (1:00)

A refugee in America gives back A refugee in America gives back

Wed, Jul 02, 2014 - (3:25)

A long search for refuge A long search for refuge

Fri, Jun 20, 2014 - (3:04)

World Cup: Around the globe in 50 goals World Cup: Around the globe in 50 goals

Fri, Jun 06, 2014 - (1:08)

VIVID – Sydney’s spectacle of light VIVID – Sydney’s spectacle of light

Fri, May 30, 2014 - (1:37)