European Solar Challenge 2020

Here is a preliminary list of the 19 teams (from 11 countries, racing 12 Challengers and 7 Cruisers) registered so far for the iLumen European Solar Challenge at Circuit Zolder in Belgium, which is still expected to go ahead on 18–20 September. The 24 hour track race starts at 13:00 on the 19th, with sunset at 19:43 that evening and sunrise at 07:23 the next morning, and with the race continuing until 13:00 on the 20th. The race begins with a Le Mans-style start.

The regulations are much as for 2018 (6 m2 panels are allowed, as is night-time external charging). Scoring has changed somewhat, with a “dynamic parcour” replacing the chicane, and Cruisers being scored on a combination of straight lap counts and a variant of WSC-style energy scoring. Exact details are yet to be announced. Five teams (Kratos, Hydrómetra, Futuro, PUT, and Cluj) are bulding new cars for the race.

My reports on the 2018 event are report 1, report 2, and report 3. Follow the official race news feed and also social media at        (click on the icons).

BE  Agoria Solar Team (KU Leuven) 

Asymmetric challenger (BluePoint) – this Belgian team is now sponsored by Agoria. They won the 2019 World Solar Challenge. They will be racing at ESC, at Sasol in February 2021, and at WSC in October 2021.

Previously, Agoria came 6th at WSC 13; came 5th at WSC 15; came 3rd at WSC 17; won WSC 19; came 3rd at Abu Dhabi 15; came 2nd at iESC 16; and came 6th at iESC 18. Their team number (8) is a long-standing tradition.

 
Left: credit / Right: Anthony Dekker (click images to zoom)

CO  Kratos EAFIT–Postobon 

Two-seat cruiser (new car: Kratos II) – this team seems to be replacing their (very attractive) previous car. See their ESC team profile here.

Previously, Kratos participated at iESC 16 and came 4th in the iESC 18 Cruiser class.

 
Left: credit / Right: credit (click images to zoom – OLD PICS)

CO  Universidad Nacional de Colombia, Medellín (Hydrómetra) 

Challenger (new team) – this team has a background in boat racing, but are building a car for iESC.


picture credit (click image to zoom – OLD PIC)

DE  Bochum University of Applied Sciences (1) 

Two-seat cruiser (thyssenkrupp SunRiser) – For the 2019 World Solar Challenge, Bochum improved their sexy 2-seater SunRiser, which came 3rd in 2015. They also have a solar buggy team. See their ESC team profile here.

Previously, Bochum came 2nd in the WSC 13 Cruiser class; came 3rd in the WSC 15 Cruiser class; came 2nd in the WSC 17 Cruiser class; came 4th in the WSC 19 Cruiser class; came 3rd, 4th, and 5th at iESC 16; came 2nd, 3rd, and 5th in the iESC 18 Cruiser class; came 1st and 7th at Albi Eco 18; and came 1st and 2nd at Albi Eco 19.

 
Left: Anthony Dekker / Right: Anthony Dekker (click images to zoom)

DE  Bochum University of Applied Sciences (2) 

Four-seat cruiser (thyssenkrupp blue.cruiser) – Bochum’s blue.cruiser was their 2017 World Solar Challenge car. See their ESC team profile here.

 
Left: credit / Right: Anthony Dekker (click images to zoom)

DE  Sonnenwagen Aachen (1) 

Monohull challenger (Covestro Sonnenwagen) – this team did very well in the World Solar Challenge, in spite of being blown off the road.

Previously, Aachen participated at WSC 17; came 6th at WSC 19; and came 3rd at iESC 18. Their team number (70) is the number they raced with in 2017.

 
Left: credit / Right: Anthony Dekker (click images to zoom)

DE  Sonnenwagen Aachen (2) 

Asymmetric challenger (Huawei Sonnenwagen) – Aachen are also racing their 2017 car.


picture credit (click image to zoom)

IT  Futuro Solare Onlus 

Cruiser (new car: Archimede 2.0) – they have an exciting new design concept and are working on construction (see also this video).

Previously, Futuro participated at iESC 16 and participated at iESC 18.

 
Left: credit / Right: credit (click images to zoom)

NL  Solar Team Twente 

Asymmetric challenger (RED E) – their tiny, beautiful GaAs catamaran RED E was badly damaged by a wind gust at the World Solar Challenge but now lives again. It will be raced at Zolder by the next edition of the team, as one of their first actions. See their ESC team profile here.

Previously, Twente came 3rd at WSC 13; came 2nd at WSC 15; came 5th at WSC 17; came 17th at WSC 19; won iESC 16; and came 1st and 2nd at iESC 18. Their team number (21) is a pun and a wish for success in the race (“Twente-One”).

 
Left: credit / Right: credit (click images to zoom)

NL  Top Dutch Solar Racing 

Monohull challenger (Green Lightning) – I declared this team “best new team” in Australia. Their car has four-wheel steering at low speed and two-wheel steering at high speed.

Previously, Top Dutch came 4th at WSC 19.

 
Left: credit / Right: credit (click images to zoom)

PL  Lodz Solar Team 

Four-seat cruiser (Eagle Two) – it is good to see this team back again.

Previously, Lodz participated in the WSC 15 Cruiser class; participated in the WSC 17 Cruiser class; participated in the WSC 19 Cruiser class; came 5th at SASOL 16; and won the iESC 18 Cruiser class. Their team number (45) is a tradition since 2015.

 
Left: credit / Right: credit (click images to zoom)

PL  PUT Solar Dynamics (Poznań University of Technology) 

Two-seat cruiser (new team) – they are making good progress on construction. This (Polish) video describes their project. They had originally hoped to race at WSC 19.

 
Left: credit / Right: credit (click images to zoom)

RO  TU Cluj-Napoca Solar Racing Team

Challenger (new team with car: SolisEV-1) – this is a brand-new team from Cluj-Napoca in Romania. They have a Formula Student background. See their ESC team profile here.


public domain photo

SE  JU Solar Team 

Asymmetric challenger (Axelent) – this Swedish team came 10th in Australia.

Previously, JU came 20th at WSC 13; came 15th at WSC 15; came 8th at WSC 17; and came 10th at WSC 19. Their team number (46) is the Swedish national telephone prefix.

 
Left: credit / Right: Anthony Dekker (click images to zoom)

CH  Solar Energy Racers 

Asymmetric challenger (SER-2) – they raced their SER-3 in South Africa and Australia. However, their older SER-2 (with a 6 m2 array) is legal under the regulations, and they are racing that here. See their ESC team profile here.

Previously, SER came 5th at WSC 13; came 15th at WSC 19; came 2nd at ASC 16; came 11th at Abu Dhabi 15; came 3rd at SASOL 18; and came 8th at iESC 16.


picture credit (click image to zoom)

TR  Istanbul Technical University (ITU) 

Challenger (BOW ISTKA) – “BOW” stands for “Bees On Wheels,” from the ITU logo.

Previously, ITU came 17th at WSC 13; participated at WSC 17; and came 7th at iESC 16.


photo: Anthony Dekker (click image to zoom)

TR  Dokuz Eylül University (Solaris) 

Asymmetric challenger (S10) – they believe the new car to be 44% more efficient than the 2015 model. Given the overlap with WSC 2021, I am not sure if they will still compete in South Africa. See their ESC team profile here.

Previously, Solaris participated in the WSC 13 Adventure class; came 25th at WSC 15; came 22nd at WSC 19; came 9th at iESC 16; came 2nd at Albi Eco 18; and came 2nd at MSRC 19.

 
Left: credit / Right: credit (click images to zoom)

GB  Durham University 

Asymmetric challenger (Ortus) – they report 24% lower drag and 28% lower weight than their previous car. See their ESC team profile here.

Previously, Durham came 27th at WSC 15; participated at WSC 17; and came 14th at WSC 19.

 
Left: credit / Right: Anthony Dekker (click images to zoom)

GB  Ardingly College 

Two-seat cruiser (Ardingly Solar Car) – this high-school team came 6th in the 2018 iESC Cruiser class, but have upgraded the car since then.

Previously, Ardingly participated in the WSC 15 Cruiser class; participated in the WSC 19 Adventure class; came 6th in the iESC 18 Cruiser class; and participated at Albi Eco 19.

 
Left: credit / Right: Anthony Dekker (click images to zoom)

This page last updated 00:35 on 1 July 2020 AEST.