WSC: three more gem awards


Interior of the thyssenkrupp blue.cruiser, the car from Hochschule Bochum

My “Sustainability” gem for the World Solar Challenge goes to Hochschule Bochum for their elegant interior, finished with renewable natural products such as pineapple leather, vegetable linens, wood, and cork.


The “Sustainability” gem goes to Hochschule Bochum

 


The car we did not see, Persian Gazelle 4 from the University of Tehran

The “Sexy Car” gem goes to the car we did not see, Persian Gazelle 4 from the University of Tehran. This car was heavily damaged in transit, and was unable to race. It looked beautiful, though, being reminiscent of a Lamborghini Aventador.


The “Sexy Car” gem goes to the University of Tehran

 


Red Shift, the car from Solar Team Twente

Previously awarded was the “Best Solar Car Name” gem, to Solar Team Twente, for their car name, Red Shift. Twente’s car name was a reference to the shift from fossil fuels to renewable energy, as well as continuing the naming sequence previously established with their Red Engine (2013) and Red One (2015) – and being a really, really geeky way of saying “eat my dust.” The car was indeed very fast.


The “Best Solar Car Name” gem went to Solar Team Twente


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WSC: three gem awards


Nuna9, the car from Nuon Solar Team

It has been my tradition to hand out “Gem Awards” after major solar car races. This WSC, the “Faster Than Lightning” gem again goes to Nuon Solar Team, the undefeated Challenger champions.


The 2017 “Faster Than Lightning” gem goes to Nuon Solar Team

 


Stella Vie, the car from Solar Team Eindhoven

The “Solar Family Car” gem again goes to Solar Team Eindhoven. They completely dominated the Cruiser class.


The 2017 “Solar Family Car” gem goes to Solar Team Eindhoven

 


Western Sydney Solar Team

The “Solar Car Family” gems go to Western Sydney Solar Team, for the way that they welcomed international teams passing through Sydney. Western Sydney Solar Team are, of course, also Australian champions in the Challenger class.


The 2017 “Solar Car Family” gems go to Western Sydney Solar Team


WSC: Challenger class charts

Based on data from the WSC web site, the final race chart above (click to zoom) shows Challenger-class timings (for the cars that did not trailer). It is drawn with reference to a baseline speed of 83.89 km/h. This is the speed that would complete the race (to “end of timing”) in 4 days and 5 hours. The left vertical axis shows how far behind the baseline cars are driving. Straight lines represent cars driving at a consistent speed. The right vertical axis shows arrival time at “end of timing” in Darwin time (Adelaide time is an hour later). The twists and turns of the lines here reveal many of the dramatic events of the race, such as the spate of bad weather. The chart below shows average speeds.


WSC: Did I pick them?

Before the World Solar Challenge, I made up up some posters of personal picks (below, click to zoom). How did I do? The top five Challengers these year were indeed as in 2015, although in a different order. Eindhoven and Bochum indeed look like they will be first and second in the Cruisers (although Sunswift, with their car problems, did less well than I expected).

Among my “dark horses,” Western Sydney improved on their 2015 result to come 6th (making them Australian champions!) and Kogakuin’s radical design came 7th. Aachen did not do as well as I expected; nor did the South African car. Stanford look like they might come 11th, but none of my speculative Cruiser picks made the top 3 (which makes me sad; I like those cars even more now I’ve seen them up close). At the time I made the picks, Arrow had not revealed much information, so I did not anticipate how strong their Cruiser debut would be. Congratulations to them and to all the teams!


WSC: A quick chart

The chart above (click to zoom) is another of my classic race charts for this year’s race. Five Challengers have arrived, and two more are expected tomorrow afternoon. The chart is drawn with reference to a baseline speed of 83.89 km/h. This is the speed that would complete the race (to end of timing) in 4 days and 5 hours (that’s a substantially slower baseline than I used in 2015). The vertical axis shows how far behind the baseline cars are driving. Straight lines represent cars driving at a consistent speed. The right vertical axis shows arrival time at “end of timing” in Darwin time (Adelaide time is an hour later). Open coloured circles show simplistically extrapolated arrival times.

Update Friday: Aachen (70) still seems to be in the race. Guestimates for Cruiser arrival times are given as coloured squares. Unfortunately the WSC web site is misbehaving again, so there are no reliable control stop times for today.


WSC: Thursday morning

On the morning of Day 5, Nuon is still powering along. There should be full sun at least until Port Augusta. The map above (click to zoom) shows GPS positions extrapolated using GPS time lag and the average speed since the start of the race. The table below shows team numbers, raw road distance from Darwin, average speed, extrapolated road distance, class (or number of seats for Cruiser class), team name, and team social media links. For a live map of raw GPS data, see the official tracker.

3 2684 km 81.6 kph 2685.8 km C Nuon 
2 2520.5 km 76.6 kph 2522.6 km C Michigan 
8 2476.5 km 75.4 kph 2481.7 km C Punch 
10 2469.9 km 75 kph 2470.1 km C Tokai 
21 2440.9 km 74.2 kph 2440.9 km C Twente 
11 2311.3 km 69.2 kph 2313.4 km 4 Bochum 
75 2270.5 km 68.7 kph 2270.5 km A Sunswift 
38 2251.1 km 67.4 kph 2251.1 km A NWU 
40 2248.4 km 67.3 kph 2250 km 5 Eindhoven 
53 2236 km 66.9 kph 2236 km A Choctaw 
42 2223.3 km 67 kph 2223.3 km A TAFE SA 
30 2205.7 km 66 kph 2207.2 km 2 Arrow 
35 2152.8 km 63.5 kph 2154.5 km 2 HK IVE 
15 2121.5 km 62.6 kph 2122 km C WSU 
49 2107.9 km 62.2 kph 2107.9 km A Siam Tech 
22 2103.9 km 62 kph 2103.9 km A MDH 
94 2086.9 km 61.6 kph 2089 km 2 Minnesota 
45 2083.2 km 61.4 kph 2083.2 km A Lodz 
88 2076.1 km 61.2 kph 2077.4 km C Kogakuin 
7 2068.1 km 61.4 kph 2068.1 km A Adelaide 
9 2018.3 km 59.6 kph 2018.3 km A PrISUm 
95 2002.3 km 59.1 kph 2004.5 km 2 Apollo 
52 1944.7 km 57.4 kph 1944.7 km A Illini 
82 1927.1 km 56.9 kph 1927.1 km A KUST 
32 1899.3 km 56 kph 1899.3 km A Principia 
46 1889.2 km 55.7 kph 1889.2 km C JU 
77 1885 km 55.6 kph 1886.1 km C Blue Sky 
25 1876.3 km 55.3 kph 1876.8 km C Nagoya 
4 1866.6 km 55.1 kph 1868.1 km C Antakari 
28 1853.5 km 54.7 kph 1853.5 km A KNUT 
16 1813.2 km 53.5 kph 1815.1 km C Stanford 
43 1786.5 km 97.2 kph 1786.5 km A ANU 
18 1766.1 km 1766.1 km A EcoPhoton 
20 1766.1 km 1766.1 km A Durham 
5 1765.9 km 1765.9 km A Singapore 
37 1765.9 km 1765.9 km C Goko 
70 1765.9 km 1765.9 km C Aachen 
71 1679.2 km 48.8 kph 1681.2 km C ITU 

Glendambo control stop.