Our goal is to complete the solar car that was started by previous teams. We hope to bring the car to the point where it is drivable so that future teams can bring it to a state where it can viably compete in the American Solar Challenge.
With the rising cost of fossil fuels, alternative energy sources are becoming more and more necessary. To encourage interest in these alternative energy sources, the University of Utah Solar Vehicle Design Team will design and build a solar powered vehicle. Solar cells take the energy from the sun and convert it directly to electricity. They produce no emissions so they will not contribute to pollution in any way.
The solar car project is in its third year of development. The first team had ambitions to complete the car and enter it into competition. The second team was more realistic in their proposals to help complete drive systems for the car. Now, in the solar car’s third year it finally has the potential to be completed and entered into parades. The 2006–2007 solar car design team wants to fulfill the wishes of the previous year’s teams by completing what they have started. This year’s team will improve the performance of the solar car. The University of Utah will have its first solar race vehicle. Due to the hard work of previous teams and the quality of this year’s team, the 2006–2007 solar vehicle design team will see it to completion.
Some of the systems to be modified and/or built are the driver controls, mounting the solar panels, and wiring the panels to the battery array. This is a preliminary list and will be expanded upon in the following discussion. The team members have divided themselves based on personal interest into two groups, one for the exterior components and the other for the internal systems. We strongly believe that in order to make the solar vehicle competitive the team must be willing to separate the tasks and focus on the ultimate goal of a building a road worthy car.
This year’s team has members with a genuine interest in seeing the car completed. Not only will it be a rewarding experience as our senior design project, but it will also create real team skills that everyone can take with them as they pursue their careers. The solar car project has a renewed interest considering current fossil fuel markets. This project will serve a greater purpose, as it will show the vast potential of environmentally friendly energy solutions.
Page last modified on April 22, 2007, at 10:08 PM