Solar-Powered Car “Violet” to Compete in the 30th Bridgestone World Solar Challenge in Australia
The Sunswift team from the University of New South Wales is readying its solar-powered sedan creation for the 30th Bridgestone World Solar Challenge. The competition will be held on October 8th and feature solar-powered vehicles trying to outspeed one another as they brave the intensity of the Australian outback.
Named “Violet,” this car is the largest solar-powered vehicle that the team has produced ever since it first banded together for the World Solar Challenge in 1995. The vehicle manifests an elongated sedan body with an appearance similar to a modern-day consumer car. The students state that their intent was to show how alternative energy technology could be practical and accessible to the average car owner.
Weighing just 880 pounds, this creature can travel 68 mph while energized by just 7 kilowatts of horsepower. Simba Kuestler, team leader for Sunswift, states that the car is particularly efficient, running on “as much power as a four-slice toaster.”
With such rough terrain and a long distance to cover, one must wonder if Violet is equipped to weather these challenges. After all, the race spans the width of the continent from the northern region of Darwin to the southern region of Adelaide, a total length of 1,877 miles.
Violet has a capacity to travel 497 miles on solar panel energy alone, since it is outfitted with this technology on its hood and roof. Lithium batteries offer a secondary source of solar power, delivering an additional 249 miles. These ratings are based on a maximum speed of 81 mph.
The first car to cross the finish line in the early morning hours of October 12th will win the race. Best of luck to Violet and the Sunswift team as they embark on this race.
News Source: Live Science