Another race chart (I’m using the same baseline speed I used in 2017). The right vertical axis shows arrival time at “end of timing” in Darwin time (Adelaide time is an hour later).
After repairs, Kogakuin and Aachen have reached Adelaide, followed by Antakari, Nagoya, Eclipse, and Jönköping University. Blue Sky are in Adelaide, but do not seem to have crossed the ceremonial finish line yet.
Another preliminary version of my race chart (I’m using the same baseline speed I used in 2017). The right vertical axis shows arrival time at “end of timing” in Darwin time (Adelaide time is an hour later).
There are now 9 international teams in Australia (more than the number of local teams). Eindhoven (#40), Agoria (#8), and part of Vattenfall (#3) are driving north to Darwin, while Top Dutch (#6) have a workshop in Port Augusta (and living quarters in Quorn).
#89 Estidamah – they have not responded to questions. They also might not turn up, although they have obtained several greens for compulsory documents.
#80 Beijing Institute of Technology – they never say much, but they always turn up in the end. I don’t expect this year to be any different.
#4 Antakari Solar Team – they are clearly behind schedule, but they are an experienced team. They will probably turn up. (edit: they have revealed a beautiful bullet car)
#55 Mines Rabat Solar Team – they seem to have run out of time. Can they finish the car and raise money for air freight? I’m not sure. (edit: it seems that they will attend the Moroccan Solar Challenge instead of WSC)
Below (click to zoom) is a solar car map of the Netherlands (north, south, east, west), plus the German cities of Aachen & Bochum and the Belgian city of Leuven, which are close enough to the Dutch border to be in the map region. That’s 7 solar car teams in a very small corner of the world! (base map modified from one by Alphathon).
In 2017, the University of Michigan produced a stunning monohull solar car, Novum, which went on to take second place in the World Solar Challenge (it is shown mirror-reflected above). Their 2019 car, Electrum, has a pointier nose, and a more streamlined tail.
The new Top Dutch team has very sensibly taken Novum as a starting point for their car, no doubt feeling that the Netherlands already has too many catamarans (every new team should, if possible, strive to emulate one of the leaders of the last World Solar Challenge). Top Dutch appear to have independently made tail modifications very similar to those of Electrum. The Covestro Sonnenwagen from Aachen also shows signs of being influenced by Novum, but with a quite different nose.
Not shown are the Japanese monohulls, which look a little different, and the unique asymmetric monohull from Stanford. It will be very interesting to see all these monohulls take on the compact catamarans from Delft, Twente, and Belgium in the race this October!
Recently I made a poster of the favourites (based purely on 2015 performance) for the 2017 WSC. Here is a somewhat more subjective list of new, innovative, and rising teams. All worth watching! For more details, see my annotated list of teams.