Traversing Australia on Sunshine

Dean Sigler Electric Aircraft Components, Electric Powerplants, GFC, Solar Power Leave a Comment

Australia supplies 3,000 kilometers (1,860 miles) of smooth road and abundant sunshine every year for the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge that bisects the country north to south.  Growing in numbers annually, this year’s five-day race drew 47 teams from 25 countries, with two teams from the Netherlands,  one from the University of Michigan in the United States and one from Tokai University in Japan trading the lead almost daily and battling it out for the first four places in the Challenger Class with daily consistency. University of Delft students had their second win in two years, while rivals from the University of Twente (the Netherlands) achieved a very strong second place overall.  The University of Michigan’s team was a consistent third-place …

Nudging the Speed Limit on Solar Power

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation Leave a Comment

Imagine driving through the desert with sundown approaching and the gas gauge teetering on empty. Wherever you are when the car runs out of gas or the clock reads 5:00 pm, you spend the night. Competitors in the Challenger Class of this year’s Bridgestone World Solar Challenge had to face this challenge to their comfort and peace of mind every evening for five days. Organizers of this international competition note, “It’s all about energy management!  Based on the original notion that a 1000 Watt car would complete the journey in 50 hours, solar cars are allowed a nominal 5 kilowatt hours of stored energy, which is 10% of that theoretical figure.  All other energy must come from the sun or …