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Hama Zero's Solar Bike Fujin runs thanks to the sun, not on it (video)

Tim Stevens

Upon hearing the name "Solar Bike Fujin," designed by a Japanese space rover engineer, we leaned back in our chairs and dreamed up dramatic images of a futuristic bicycle dashing across the void before cruising the turbulent surface of the sun. However, when we watched the rest of the video below we realized that the bike will instead conquer rather more terrestrial routes at speeds well short of escape velocity (72km/h, or about 45mph). It is, however, powered by the sun, able to run 220km on a full charge or, thanks to its aerodynamicaly profiled solar wings, can give itself 50km worth of juice just by sitting in the sun while you put in your 9-to-5. This is helped by incredibly low rolling-resistance wheels, the front one able to keep rotating for 20 minutes on its own with just a gentle spin, technology borrowed from creator Mr. Yamawaki's Minerva rover that was part of the Hayabusa probe. Hopefully this bike manages to get a little further than that rover did.

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