Two Dutch University Teams unveil Solar Cars for the Australian World Solar Challenge (Dutch Design 46)

World Solar Challenge 2009

Two Dutch University Teams have unveiled their new solar cars for the 2009 Australian World Solar Challenge (the 10th Challenge).

The WSC runs over 3,000 km from Darwin in North Australia to Adelaide in South Australia. The start will be on October 25, 2009.

Nuon Solar Team of TU Delft

The Nuon Solar Team consisting of 14 undergraduates from TU (Technical University) Delft, led by coach Wubbo Ockels, the only Dutch Astronaut, here left on the photo, have unveiled their entry for the unofficial world championship for solar cars. Nuna5 is ready for the team’s 5th title!

As the Nuon Solar Team has won 4 prior editions, their competitors will be putting every effort in beating them in this challenge. At first glance it seems that the Nuna5 is a further development of proven technology as could be found in its predecessor Nuna4

Twente University Solar Car Team
Twente University Solar Car Team Solar Team Twente will probably be one of the closest competitors of the Nuon Solar Car Team. Here is a video animation of it’s 2009 solar car:

They have refined two innovations of their former model: The cantilever wing design that enables them to turn the wing with solar cells to the sun and the Fresnel lenses to get more sun rays on the solar cells.

Some WSC History
To me it seems very odd that the “Official WSC Site” gives hardly any information about the 2009 edition.


The event evolved from an experiment by Danish-born adventurer Hans Tholstrup who, sponsored by BP, designed the world’s first solar car, called Quiet Achiever, in which he completed the BP Solar Trek, traversing the 4052 km (2,518 miles) between Sydney and Perth in 20 days. That was the precursor of the World Solar Challenge originally held every three years to one held every two years.

After the 4th race Hans Tholstrup sold the rights to the state of South Australia (source World Solar Challenge Wiki).

Results from the former editions:

  1. 1987
    1st Place General Motors “Sunraycer” (USA) average speed 66.9 Km/h
    2nd Place Ford Australia “Sunchaser” (AUS) average speed 44.48 Km/h
    3rd Place Biel College of Engineering (CH) average speed 42.93 Km/h
  2. 1990
    1st Place Biel College of Engineering (CH) average speed 65.18 Km/h
    2nd Place Honda “Dream” (Japan) average speed 54.67 Km/h
    3rd Place University of Michigan (USA) average Speed 52.53 Km/h
  3. 1993
    1st Place Honda “Dream” (Japan) average Speed 84.96 Km/h
    2nd Place Biel College of Engineering (CH) average speed 78.27 Km/h
    3rd Place Kyocera “Son of Sun” (Japan) average speed 70.76 Km/h
  4. 1996
    1st Place Honda “Dream II” (Japan) average speed 89.76 Km/h
    2nd Place United High Schools of Biel (CH) average speed 86 Km/h
    3rd Place Aisin Seiki “Aisol III” average speed 80.7 Km/h
  5. 1999
    1st Place Aurora “Aurora 101” (AUS) average speed 72.96 Km/h
    2nd Place Queens university “Radiance” (CAN) average speed 72.17 Km/h
    3rd Place University of Queensland “Sunshark” (AUS) average speed 71.68 Km/h
  6. 2001
    1st Place Nuna “Alpha Centauri” (NL) average speed 91.81 Km/h
    2nd Place Aurora “Aurora 101” (AUS) average speed 90.26 Km/h
    3rd Place University of Michigan (USA) average speed average speed 87.37 Km/h
  7. 2003
    1st Place Nuon “Nuna II” (NL) average speed 97.02 Km/h
    2nd Place Aurora “Aurora 101” (AUS) average speed 91.90 Km/h
    3rd Place MIT “Tesseract” (USA) average speed 90.20 Km/h
  8. 2005
    1st Place Nuon “Nuna III” (NL) average speed 102.75 Km/h
    2nd Place Aurora “Aurora 101” (AUS) average speed 92.03 Km/h
    3rd Place University of Michigan “Momentum” (USA) average speed 90.03 Km/h
  9. 2007 (NB lower average speeds due to 25% smaller solar panels)
    1st Place Nuon “Nuna 4” (NL) average speed 90.87 Km/h
    2nd Place Umicore “Umicar Infinity” (Belgium) average speed 88.05 Km/h
    3rd Place Aurora “Aurora 101” (Australia) average speed 85 Km/h

A New Name: Global Green Challenge:
Ah….It turns out there is a new site and a new name on the block which gives much more information: The Global Green Challenge. Apparently the event has evolved. This is the new logo:

Global Green Challenge Logo

Here is their list of 2009 participants

Some links for future reference:
German Team Bochum Hochschule will compete with a more car alike 4 wheel solar car
Belgian Umicore Solar Car Team will unveil their new car August 1, 2009
The Wiki List of Solar Car Teams was handy for researching this post.

A general Solar Cars site.

I believe that all parties involved have a task in bettering their communication. Teams involved communicate in their local languages and there are many loose ends.

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