From Darwin to Adelaide, the length of Australia, 3010 kilometres, without fuel!

On 19 October 30 cars will be jostling for position at the start of the 7th World Solar Challenge in Darwin, Australia. After winning in 2001 with Nuna I, the Nuon Solar Team, from the Netherlands, will be bidding to retain their title.

The strong team of twelve from Delft University of Technology and Erasmus University Rotterdam are determined to beat the world record and try to average 100 km/h, compared to 91.81 km/h in 2001. Nuna II uses advanced space technology, provided to the team through ESA’s Technology Transfer Programme, enabling the car to reach a theoretical top speed of over 170 km/h.

The aerodynamically optimised outer shell consists of space-age reinforced plastics to keep it light and strong. The main body is made from reinforced carbon fibre and aramide, a material used in satellites, but nowadays also in high-performance equipment such as bulletproof vests.

The car’s shell is covered with the best triple-junction gallium arsenide solar cells, developed for satellites. The same cells are being tested on the SMART-1 satellite launched to the Moon on 28 September this year. Nuna II also carries Maximum Power Point Trackers, small devices that guarantee an optimal balance between power from the battery and the solar cells, even in less favourable situations like shade and cloud.

“Will they win? I am sure they have a great chance,” says Wubbo Ockels, the first Dutch astronaut and today a professor at Delft University. “They have worked hard and with great dedication.”

In pursuit of their goal, the student team have collected an impressive line-up of supporters. ESA has provided them not only with engineering support through its Technology Transfer Programme, but with general support from its Education Office. Dutch energy company Nuon is the main sponsor.

If you are interested you will be able to follow the race on: www.esa.int

Media Contact

Pierre Brisson ESA

All news from this category: Transportation and Logistics

This field deals with all spatial and time-related activities involved in bridging the gap between goods and people, including their restructuring. This begins with the supplier and follows each stage of the operational value chain to product delivery and concludes with product disposal and recycling.

innovations-report provides informative reports and articles on such topics as traffic telematics, toll collection, traffic management systems, route planning, high-speed rail (Transrapid), traffic infrastructures, air safety, transport technologies, transport logistics, production logistics and mobility.

Back to the Homepage

Comments (0)

Write comment

Latest posts

Innovations through hair-thin optical fibres

Scientists at the University of Bonn have built hair-thin optical fibre filters in a very simple way. They are not only extremely compact and stable, but also colour-tunable. This means…

Artificial intelligence for sustainable agriculture

ZIM cooperation network on AI-based agricultural robotics launched The recently approved ZIM cooperation network “DeepFarmbots” met virtually for its official kick-off on November 25. The central goal of the network…

Teamwork in a molecule

Chemists at the University of Jena harness synergy effect of gallium Chemists at Friedrich Schiller University Jena have demonstrated the value of “teamwork” by successfully harnessing the interaction between two…

Partners & Sponsors

By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. more information

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.

Close