Supercharged performance from Sussex solar racers

Training Posted 13/11/18
A team of whiz-kids from Ardingly College raced past the finish line at Circuit Zolder, Belgium, as they took part in the prestigious ILumen European Solar Challenge.

Thirty five students from Ardingly who were representing Great Britain and Northern Ireland, were involved finishing tenth of twenty in the big race – after speeding through a 24-hour circuit in particularly testing conditions.

During the race, the Sussex competitors managed to complete 140 laps and a total of 590km.

Ardingly are the only school to have ever entered this event and were competing against prestigious university and industry based teams.

The event was the culmination of years of hard work, with pupils designing and building their competing car with the very latest of eco-technology so that it can harness power directly from the sun.

Dr Andrew Spiers MBE, director of science and technology, said: “The Ardingly Solar project is really about engaging young people with environmental engineering. It is our hope that by building this car and refining its performance, our students will feel a sense of responsibility about the environment, learn about cutting-edge technology, and take away a determination to make a positive difference.”

Over the past eight years, more than 300 students have been involved in the Ardingly Solar project with local businesses Cirrus Laser, Cordek, Tracmaster, Time24, Lincoln Binns and XBex, industry professionals, and universities from the South of England.

With success under their belts, the solar project team will now turn their attention to preparing the car for the Australian Bridgestone World Solar Challenge in October 2019. In 2015, they made it to sixth place.

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