Can you imagine traveling from Europe to Japan through a bike? Generally, this may sound awkward but French cyclist, Florian Bailly, did it using a solar electric bike. He started out from Italy, Slovenia, Croatia, Serbia, Romania, Ukraine, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and China to the final destination - Japan all on the back of a 8,000 euro prototype bicycle that towed a solar panelled trailer.
By using a solar powered electric bicycle, Bailly was able to make the journey in two-thirds of the time it would take someone peddling normally. As such, he was able to rack up 120km a day allowing the journey to be completed in four months as opposed to six.
The key to his journey’s success was the solar trailer which carried two solar panels. These panels charged two lithium batteries that powered the bicycle’s electric motor enabling Bailly to travel at higher speeds with the same amount of pedalling.
Upon arriving at his destination in Tokyo, Bailly said: “I crossed desert, mountains and countryside, where there is nothing, nobody. Then in this big city with millions of people, it was crazy.” “I met a lot of people across the world. I was surprised– everyone, young, old people, rich or poor people, were interested in my bike. I don’t speak Chinese or Russian very well. So we had to talk with a few words or gestures. But everyone understands how this bike works.”
Bailly is now planning on returning to France where he will make a film about his exploits and promote the use of electric scooters and bicycles around the world.