Solartuk is a physical realisation of SE Asia in Australia, and is an example of how young Australians are contributing to a building more sustainable future across the region.
What is the expedition about?
Over the last twelve months, a team of young Australians have converted a Thai-made tuk tuk into a three-wheeled, sun-powered, long-range electric vehicle to promote sustainable transport and a low-carbon future.
On November 24, the team will embark on an expedition to travel the length of Australia, and then around the globe, to show that a green vehicle can go the distance.
What inspired this project?
The humble tuk tuk, also known as an auto-rickshaw, is used by millions of people around the world for their daily commute. They’re loud, dirty, small and fun. What they’re not known for is being part of a sustainable transport future, or the vehicle of choice for a long-distance expedition.
We care a lot about the environment, and believe we need to find more sustainable ways to live, work and travel, and transportation is an important part of the equation. We think that electric vehicles have a role to play, and would love to see a faster transition to greener forms of mobility. We think that if we can make it across Australia and the world in a slow-moving tuk tuk, then people needn’t be too worried about the range of their own, more appropriate, electric vehicles.
Tell us about your tuk?
Our vehicle is a second-hand, Thai-made vehicle from the Tuk Tuk Factory, a leading manufacturer of electric vehicles. It is undergoing upgrades – including the addition of a photovoltaic solar system – from an engineering team at RMIT University in Melbourne.
How can I get involved?
if we’re passing through your city or town, please come out and say hi!
Better yet, jump on our website and arrange a visit to your school, community or business. We’d love to drop by.
During each stop we are available to deliver education, outreach and workshops for schools, community and business groups.
We want to make the most of our visit, showcase and share the SolarTuk story, and meet with local sustainability leaders, innovators, educators, students and the general public. We also aim to visit various project related to solar energy, sustainability, and technology innovation.
If you live in one of these places and would like to host us, we would love to meet you. Whether its scones and a chat or a whole school visit, we are open to sharing our story far and wide.
Our Global Solar Circumnavigation will hit the road in 2019 and will travel across Australia and Southeast Asia all the way to Europe, North America before returning to our starting point in Melbourne, Australia.
SolarTuk is supported by a grant from the Australia-ASEAN Council.