swarthmore-cop-car-solar
Daily Gazette

The best insult to drunkenly slur at cops when they break up your college kegger is, “You’re not even GREEN!” At least, it might be if you’re a rich liberal nerd at Swarthmore College. After all, cop cars’ electronic systems guzzle energy when the vehicles idle, which happens a lot. But unfortunately for Swatties, one of their own has joined forces with the Swarthmore Borough Police to make the force solar-powered. Students now may have to resort to the time-tested “You suck!”

Two former Swarthmore students got the ball rolling, snagging $5,000 in funding from the college president to put solar panels on a cop car. Sophomore Kara Bledsoe partnered with Engineering Professor Carr Everbach to finish the job. It was a bit of a bumpy road:

Solar panels are normally flat and rigid, but to mount these panels to a car, Everbach had to use rubber panels…[P]olice officers don’t want to find that they have left a solar panel by the side of the road in the middle of an emergency.

Aside from these difficulties, the only mishap that has occurred since the first panels were installed this past summer has been a manufacturing malfunction in one panel that caused the system to short and begin smoking.

Went to college and started smoking, eh? Tsk tsk. Next the cop car will think it gets Nietzsche.