Stella Vita is a solar-powered home on wheels. It’s the work of a student group consisting of 22 members from Eindhoven University.
The electronic caravan is a fully-fledged residence designed to complete a 1,800-mile (2,896 km) journey throughout Southern Europe to spread awareness about climate change and hopefully encourage people on the trip.
On October 15, after a year and a half creating Stella Vita, the group has successfully concluded its much-anticipated trip in Tarifa, the southernmost tip of the Iberian Peninsula. However, it was not an easy task.
The Solar Team started their journey from their base in Eindhoven on September 19. At the start of the tour, the team posted on their official website “We start in the Dutch ‘City of Light’. From our home base, we are going to start the tour with our partners, family, and friends. In addition, we are going to make contacts and share our vision with expats living in Eindhoven.”
In addition to a valid license plate, the vehicle also passed all tests before it was allowed to hit the road. However, the solar-powered vehicle’s drivetrain malfunctioned. The team decided it was unsafe to travel on the road and towed the RV, stopping in Zolder.
In Zolder, the team’s engineers in vehicle dynamics worked hard to resolve the powertrain’s issues by assembling new components. After they had fixed the problem with the powertrain, they set off for Brussels, where they stayed for a night. The next destination was France, where the team took Stella Vita through Paris, Le Mans, Ile De Re, Bordeaux, and Biarritz. Following France, the group drove to Spain.
Although it was a smooth ride between Zaragoza through Madrid, after hearing odd sounds from the RV, The team decided it was time to be transported by trailer from Toledo to Cordoba to ensure safety.
After a series of obstacles, the team made it to their destination, Tarifa, after having traveled over 1,242 miles (2,000 kilometers). Meeting many students and climate activists, the team raised awareness and presented an innovative and sustainable method of mobility. The most impressive part is that the trip was completed without stopping for fuel or plugging in to charge. A self-sufficient home on wheels, Stella Vita, was powered by the sun alone.