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High school students compete in solar car race

High school students compete in solar car race

High school students compete in solar car race
Modified news release from SCHOTT
July 13, 2006

Powered by SCHOTT Solar Cells, Sundancer Makes Bid for 6th Consecutive Championship at Dell-Winston School Solar Car Challenge

Beginning on July 16th, high school students from the US, Puerto Rico and India will travel to Texas Motor Speedway to compete in the 11th annual Dell-Winston School Solar Car Challenge, a race tasking students to design, build and race their own solar powered cars.


Designed to encourage young people to study science, engineering, and technology, the Dell-Winston School Solar Car Challenge brings teams from high schools across the country each year to race their student-designed and built solar cars. On even numbered years the event takes place on a closed track at the world famous Texas Motor Speedway. On odd numbered years teams trek cross-country.

This year, the Sundancer Solar Race Team, from Houston, Miss., will attempt to win the Solar Car Challenge for the sixth year in a row.


“As winners of the last five challenges, our team knows we have a target on our back,” said Leigh Anna Springer, Sundancer team captain. “Since last year’s race we have worked hard to design, test and build this year’s Sundancer. Now it is a matter of putting our car to the test on the race track, and seeing if our car, driver and pit crew are up to the challenge.”

As in previous years, students on the 15-member Sundancer team designed and built the solar-powered car themselves, under the guidance of team coach and sponsor Keith Reese. The experience has helped students at the Houston Vocational Center gain valuable engineering and business skills, all within the context of the booming renewable energy industry.


Reese says that past participants in the program have moved on to become engineers at NASA and with the Army Corps of Engineers.


“Every year, the students work to improve all aspects of the car’s design from the year before,” said Reese. “They try to lower the weight of the car, streamline the aerodynamics and squeeze as much electricity out of the solar cells as possible.”


You can read more about the Sundancer team’s experiences building and preparing the car and at the race itself at www.sundancersolarcar.blogspot.com.


This is a modified news release from SCHOTT North America, Inc.