European Solar Challenge 2022

Here is a list of 14 teams from 10 countries (7 Challenger teams and 7 Cruiser teams) intending to race in the iLumen European Solar Challenge in September this year (with scrutineering beginning on the 15th). Team numbers are a bit of a guess on my part at this stage, and some of the teams (Aachen, Eindhoven, and Twente) will be fielding two cars. See also the race social media at      

The 24-hour track race will start at 13:00 on the 17th, with sunset at 19:49 that evening and sunrise at 07:18 the next morning, and with the race continuing until 13:00 on the 18th. The race will begin with a Le Mans-style start. The track is 4.011 km long. For fans at home interested in the weather, check the forecast. Also, at the top of this page is a webcam nearby, looking west, towards the Zolder racetrack. This webcam is at the track itself (with a view of the “Kleine Chicane,” looking roughly north from just about the centre of the track).

BE  Agoria Solar Team / KU Leuven 

Asymmetric challenger (BluePoint) – they are racing their catamaran here, and their newer BluePoint Atlas in South Africa.

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; came 6th at iESC 18; came 1st and 6th at iESC 20; won iESC 21; won Carrera Solar Atacama 18; and came 2nd at SCM 21. Their team number (8) is a long-standing tradition.

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

IT  Onda Solare 

Four-seat cruiser (Emilia 4 LT) – they won the American Solar Challenge (Cruiser class) in 2018, and they have written up their design process here, but they have since made substantial improvements to the vehicle, including to the aerodynamics, suspension, battery, and solar panels. There is also an unusual open tail. Immediately after iESC, they will also be attending the Italian Solar Challenge near Bologna    

Previously, Onda came 10th at WSC 13; participated in the WSC 19 Cruiser class; won the ASC 18 Cruiser class; came 10th at Abu Dhabi 15; came 6th at iESC 16; and won the iESC 21 Cruiser class. Their team number (9) is taken from the SS 9, the highway through Bologna, which was once the Roman Via Aemilia (hence also the name of their vehicle).

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

11  DE  Hochschule Bochum Solar Car Team 

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. Their current plans involve driving a 2003 vintage Land Rover Defender 110 across Europe, but they will race their SunRiser 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 3rd and 4th in the iESC 21 Cruiser class; came 1st and 7th at Albi Eco 18; came 1st and 2nd at Albi Eco 19; and came 3rd at Albi Eco 22.

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

17  CO  Kratos EAFIT 

Two-seat cruiser (Kratos) – this team seems to be building a new 4-seater Kratos II, but racing their older 2-seater. Their car has been packed for shipping.

Previously, Kratos came 13th at WSC 13; came 9th at WSC 15; participated at iESC 16; and came 4th in the iESC 18 Cruiser class.

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

21  NL  Solar Team Twente 

Three-wheel (tadpole) challenger (Red Horizon) – they are also racing their 2019 catamaran RED E.

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; came 1st and 2nd at iESC 18; came 2nd and 4th at iESC 20; came 3rd at iESC 21; and won SCM 21. Their team number (21) is a pun and a wish for success in the race (“Twente-One”).

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

23  GB  University of Nottingham Solar Racing Team 

Cruiser (new team) – their rather radical approach is to modify a Renault Twizy to have solar panels, improved electrics, and second life Nissan Leaf batteries. They aim to participate at iESC 2022 with their first car.


photo: UoN team (click image to zoom)

31  CH  Solar Energy Racers 

Challenger (SER-4) – they raced their SER-3 in South Africa and Australia, but they are racing their new SER-4 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; came 8th at iESC 16; and came 4th at iESC 21.


photo: Anthony Dekker (click image to zoom)

34  TR  Istanbul Technical University (ITU) 

Challenger (Ariba X) – this car replaces their older B.O.W. It has been touring Turkey before the race.

Previously, ITU came 17th at WSC 13; participated at WSC 17; came 7th at iESC 16; came 7th at iESC 20; and came 8th at iESC 21. Their team number (34) is the vehicle license plate prefix for Istanbul.

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

40  NL  Solar Team Eindhoven 

Four-seat cruiser (Stella Era) – their focus for 2021 was a Self-sustaining House On Wheels (Stella Vita). They are racing both it and their Stella Era here.

Previously, Eindhoven won the WSC 13 Cruiser class; won the WSC 15 Cruiser class; won the WSC 17 Cruiser class; won the WSC 19 Cruiser class; came 7th in the iESC 18 Cruiser class; and came 1st and 2nd in the iESC 20 Cruiser class. Their team number (40) is the Eindhoven telephone area code.

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

45  PL  Lodz Solar Team 

Four-seat cruiser (Eagle Two) – this car is still going strong.

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; won the iESC 18 Cruiser class; and came 2nd in the iESC 21 Cruiser class. Their team number (45) is a tradition since 2015.

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

51  SE  Chalmers Solar Team 

Three-wheel (tadpole) challenger (Sköll) – they are racing their elegant bullet car again.

Previously, Chalmers came 21st at WSC 19; came 5th at iESC 21; participated at Swedish Solar Race 21; and came 6th at SCM 21.

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

70  DE  Sonnenwagen Aachen 

Three-wheel (outrigger) challenger (Covestro Photon) – they are also racing their older monohull, Covestro Sonnenwagen. Immediately after iESC, they will also be attending the Italian Solar Challenge near Bologna    

Previously, Aachen participated at WSC 17; came 6th at WSC 19; came 3rd at iESC 18; came 5th and 8th at iESC 20; came 2nd and 6th at iESC 21; and came 5th at SCM 21. Their team number (70) is the number they raced with in 2017.

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

81  TR  Solar Team Solaris (Dokuz Eylül University) 

Challenger (S11) – they have replaced their old catamaran with a bullet car, which they will be racing again. Immediately after iESC, they will also be attending the Italian Solar Challenge near Bologna    

Previously, Solaris participated in the WSC 13 Adventure class; came 25th at WSC 15; came 18th at WSC 19; came 9th at iESC 16; came 7th at iESC 21; came 2nd at Albi Eco 18; and came 2nd at MSRC 19.

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

99  NL  Fontys Automotive Solar Team (NovaFAST) 

Two-seat cruiser (new team) – this new team from the Fontys University of Applied Sciences is located in the Eindhoven area, 19 km from Solar Team Eindhoven. They aim to participate at iESC 2022 with their first car, and their roadmap has them participating at WSC in 2025.


picture credit (click image to zoom)

This page last updated 16:53 on 6 August 2022 AEST.


European Solar Challenge laps

Supplementary to my charts of iLumen European Solar Challenge results, the chart above shows lap timing during the race. Solid lines are Challenger class, while dashed lines are Cruiser class (Onda Solare won the Cruiser class on points). As in the 2020 event, key to Agoria’s success was stopping to recharge only once during the night. Also notice that Lodz covered 235 laps (943 km) in their Cruiser without stopping to recharge at all.


European Solar Challenge results

The iLumen European Solar Challenge is over. Challenger Class results are shown above, and Cruiser Class results below. The heights of the bars show points allocated in the various categories. Twente was third overall on points in the Challenger Class, although a very close second in terms of laps (344).

A number of teams had some unfortunate problems, and the Cruisers from Eindhoven and PUT Solar Dynamics were not able to hit the track at all. For pictures, see team social media (see my list of teams) or iESC social media at        (click on the icons).

Update: see also this lap chart.


European Solar Challenge begins

The iLumen European Solar Challenge is on again at Circuit Zolder (located roughly in the centre of the triangle formed by the nearby cities of Leuven, Eindhoven, and Aachen). The 24-hour track race starts at 13:00 on the 18th, with sunset at 19:45 that evening and sunrise at 07:20 the next morning, and with the race continuing until 13:00 on the 19th (see chart above). The race begins with a Le Mans-style start. The track is 4.011 km long.

For fans at home interested in the weather, check the forecast. Also, at the top of this page is a webcam nearby, looking west, towards the Zolder racetrack. This webcam is at the track itself (with a view of the “Kleine Chicane,” looking roughly north from just about the centre of the track). I have already posted a list of teams.

Follow the official race news feed and also social media at        (click on the icons). There is also a live timing board and tracker and a provisional results page.


Solar cars: Belgium and Morocco

Here is a list of 17 European teams from 11 countries (including Turkey and Morocco) – 11 Challengers and 6 Cruisers – intending to race in two major upcoming solar car events in the region this year. These events are:

  • iESC  iLumen European Solar Challenge        (16–19 September): Aachen, Agoria, Onda, Bochum, Twente, SER, ITU, Eindhoven, Lodz, Chalmers, PUT, Solaris, and Cluj
  • SCM  Solar Challenge Morocco (23–29 October): Solaride, Delft, Top Dutch, Aachen, Agoria, Twente, and Chalmers

In other recent news, several new cars have been revealed, and there was a small solar car event in Sweden.


SCM  EE  Solaride  

Two-seat cruiser (new team) – this new team from Estonia has built a good-looking Cruiser. They are based in the city of Tartu.


picture credit (click image to zoom)

SCM  NL  Vattenfall Solar Team (Delft) 

Three-wheel (outrigger) challenger (new car: Nuna11) – this year will be the last year that Delft partners with Vattenfall. Starting in 2022, Brunel will be their main sponsor. They have been recruiting for the 2022 Sasol Solar Challenge, and will also race in Morocco. Their new car features an asymmetrical top surface (to create more downforce on the left wheel), a new motor controller (suitable for hills), and a LiFePO4 battery.

Previously, Delft won WSC 13; won WSC 15; won WSC 17; came 12th at WSC 19; won SASOL 14; won SASOL 16; and won SASOL 18. Their team number (3) is a long-standing tradition.

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

SCM  NL  Top Dutch Solar Racing 

Challenger (new car: Green Spirit) – they are hoping to race their new car in Morocco.

Previously, Top Dutch came 4th at WSC 19 and came 3rd at iESC 20.

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

SCM  DE  Sonnenwagen Aachen 

Three-wheel (outrigger) challenger (new car: Covestro Photon) – this team did very well in 2019, in spite of being blown off the road. They are excited about racing at Zolder again. They will race 2 cars at Zolder: the new car (7) and the previous car (70). In Morocco they will race as number 7.

Previously, Aachen participated at WSC 17; came 6th at WSC 19; came 3rd at iESC 18; came 5th and 8th at iESC 20; and came 2nd and 6th at iESC 21. Their usual team number (70) is the number they raced with in 2017.

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

SCM  BE  Agoria Solar Team / KU Leuven 

Three-wheel (tadpole) challenger (new car: BluePoint Atlas) – they have built a new car to defend their title. It is named after the Atlas Mountains. They are racing their previous car (BluePoint) at Zolder.

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; came 6th at iESC 18; came 1st and 6th at iESC 20; won iESC 21; and won Carrera Solar Atacama 18. Their team number (8) is a long-standing tradition.

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

IT  Onda Solare 

Four-seat cruiser (Emilia 4 LT) – they won the American Solar Challenge (Cruiser class) in 2018, and they have written up their design process here, but they have since made substantial improvements to the vehicle, including to the aerodynamics, suspension, battery, and solar panels. There is also an unusual open tail.

Previously, Onda came 10th at WSC 13; participated in the WSC 19 Cruiser class; won the ASC 18 Cruiser class; came 10th at Abu Dhabi 15; came 6th at iESC 16; and won the iESC 21 Cruiser class. Their team number (9) is taken from the SS 9, the highway through Bologna, which was once the Roman Via Aemilia (hence also the name of their vehicle).

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

11  DE  Hochschule Bochum Solar Car Team 

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. Their current plans involve a hybrid solar-hydrogen vehicle, called SolaH2, based on a 2003 vintage Land Rover Defender 110. They will race two cars at Zolder (the SunRiser and the older SolarWorld GT as 11 and 42 respectively).

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 3rd and 4th in the iESC 21 Cruiser class; came 1st and 7th at Albi Eco 18; and came 1st and 2nd at Albi Eco 19.

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

21  SCM  NL  Solar Team Twente 

Three-wheel (tadpole) challenger (new car: Red Horizon) – they have built a three-wheeler this year, and will race both at Zolder and in Morocco. Their Zolder car will be their 2019 RED E.

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; came 1st and 2nd at iESC 18; came 2nd and 4th at iESC 20; and came 3rd at iESC 21. Their team number (21) is a pun and a wish for success in the race (“Twente-One”).

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

31  CH  Solar Energy Racers 

Challenger (new car: SER-4) – they raced their SER-3 in South Africa and Australia. However, they still have their SER-2, and will race that at Zolder again. They are also building a new SER-4.

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; came 8th at iESC 16; and came 4th at iESC 21.

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

34  TR  Istanbul Technical University (ITU) 

Challenger (new car: Ariba X) – they discuss their plans here. They have built a new car to replace their older B.O.W.

Previously, ITU came 17th at WSC 13; participated at WSC 17; came 7th at iESC 16; came 7th at iESC 20; and came 8th at iESC 21. Their team number (34) is the vehicle license plate prefix for Istanbul.

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

40  NL  Solar Team Eindhoven 

Cruiser (new car: Stella Vita) – after building four “solar family cars,” their focus for 2021 is a Self-sustaining House On Wheels. They also took their Stella Era to Zolder, although they were prevented from racing.

Previously, Eindhoven won the WSC 13 Cruiser class; won the WSC 15 Cruiser class; won the WSC 17 Cruiser class; won the WSC 19 Cruiser class; came 7th in the iESC 18 Cruiser class; and came 1st and 2nd in the iESC 20 Cruiser class. Their team number (40) is the Eindhoven telephone area code.

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

45  PL  Lodz Solar Team 

Four-seat cruiser (Eagle Two) – this team has some nice (Polish) news coverage here. They are working on improving their car.

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; won the iESC 18 Cruiser class; and came 2nd in the iESC 21 Cruiser class. Their team number (45) is a tradition since 2015.

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

51  SCM  SE  Chalmers Solar Team 

Three-wheel (tadpole) challenger (new car: Sköll) – they were the first Challenger-class team to reveal a render for their new car.

Previously, Chalmers came 21st at WSC 19; came 5th at iESC 21; and participated at Swedish Solar Race 21.

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

77  PL  PUT Solar Dynamics (Poznań University of Technology) 

Two-seat cruiser (new team with car: Klara) – they have revealed their car, which weighs 750 kg and has an 18.5 kWh battery. This (Polish) video describes their project. Sadly, they had pre-race electrical problems at the Zolder racetrack.

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

77  MA  Mines Rabat Solar Team 

Asymmetric challenger (new car: Eleadora 2) – they have worked hard to complete this car (see this video).

Previously, Mines Rabat participated at MSRC 19.

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

81  TR  Solar Team Solaris (Dokuz Eylül University) 

Challenger (new car: S11) – they missed the last ESC, but are attending in 2021 with their new car.

Previously, Solaris participated in the WSC 13 Adventure class; came 25th at WSC 15; came 18th at WSC 19; came 9th at iESC 16; came 7th at iESC 21; came 2nd at Albi Eco 18; and came 2nd at MSRC 19.

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

99  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 appear to have no online presence at all (although their institution does have a Formula Student team) but they are present at the track.

Previously, Cluj came 9th at iESC 21.


public domain photo

This page last updated 20:08 on 25 October 2021 AEDT.


Six new solar cars

For solar car fans, here are six newly revealed cars. They will race at one or both of:

SCM  NL  Vattenfall Solar Team (Delft) 

Three-wheel (outrigger) challenger (new car: Nuna11) – this year will be the last year that Delft partners with Vattenfall. Starting in 2022, Brunel will be their main sponsor. They have been recruiting for the 2022 Sasol Solar Challenge, and will also race in Morocco. Their new car features an asymmetrical top surface (to create more downforce on the left wheel), a new motor cntroller (suitable for hills), and a LiFePO4 battery.


Credit (click image to zoom)

iESC  SCM  NL  Top Dutch Solar Racing 

Challenger (new car: Green Spirit) – they are hoping to race their new car in Morocco.


Credit (click image to zoom)

iESC  SCM  BE  Agoria Solar Team / KU Leuven 

Three-wheel (tadpole) challenger (new car: BluePoint Atlas) – they have built a new car to defend their title. It is named after the Atlas Mountains.


Credit (click image to zoom)

iESC  SCM  NL  Solar Team Twente 

Three-wheel (tadpole) challenger (new car: Red Horizon) – they have built a three-wheeler this year, and will race both at Zolder and in Morocco.


Credit (click image to zoom)

iESC  SCM  DE  Sonnenwagen Aachen 

Three-wheel (outrigger) challenger (new car: Covestro Photon) – this team did very well in 2019, in spite of being blown off the road. They are excited about racing at Zolder again. They will race 2 cars at Zolder: the new car (7) and the previous car (70).


Credit (click image to zoom)

iESC  TR  Solar Team Solaris (Dokuz Eylül University) 

Challenger (new car: S11) – they missed the last ESC, but hope to attend the next one with their new car.


Credit (click image to zoom)


Exciting European solar car update

This list is obsolete; new version is here.

Here is a list of 18 European teams from 12 countries (including Turkey and Morocco) – 11 Challengers and 7 Cruisers – intending to race in two major upcoming solar car events in the region this year. These events are:

  • iESC  iLumen European Solar Challenge        (16–19 September): Top Dutch, Aachen, Agoria, Onda, Bochum, Twente, Nottingham, SER, ITU, Eindhoven, Lodz, Solaris, PUT, and Cluj
  • SCM  Solar Challenge Morocco (23–29 October): Solaride, Delft, Top Dutch, Aachen, Agoria, Twente, Chalmers, Mines Rabat, and others – NEW EVENT

In other recent news, several new cars have been revealed.


SCM  EE  Solaride  

Two-seat cruiser (new team) – this new team from Estonia hopes to build a Cruiser. They are based in the city of Tartu.


picture credit (click image to zoom)

SCM  NL  Vattenfall Solar Team (Delft) 

Three-wheel (outrigger) challenger (new car: Nuna11) – this year will be the last year that Delft partners with Vattenfall. Starting in 2022, Brunel will be their main sponsor. They have been recruiting for the 2022 Sasol Solar Challenge, and will also race in Morocco. Their new car features an asymmetrical top surface (to create more downforce on the left wheel), a new motor controller (suitable for hills), and a LiFePO4 battery.

Previously, Delft won WSC 13; won WSC 15; won WSC 17; came 12th at WSC 19; won SASOL 14; won SASOL 16; and won SASOL 18. Their team number (3) is a long-standing tradition.

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

iESC  SCM  NL  Top Dutch Solar Racing 

Challenger (new car: Green Spirit) – they are hoping to race their new car in Morocco.

Previously, Top Dutch came 4th at WSC 19 and came 3rd at iESC 20.

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

iESC  SCM  DE  Sonnenwagen Aachen 

Three-wheel (outrigger) challenger (new car: Covestro Photon) – this team did very well in 2019, in spite of being blown off the road. They are excited about racing at Zolder again. They will race 2 cars at Zolder: the new car (7) and the previous car (70). In Morocco they will race as number 7.

Previously, Aachen participated at WSC 17; came 6th at WSC 19; came 3rd at iESC 18; and came 5th and 8th at iESC 20. Their usual team number (70) is the number they raced with in 2017.

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

iESC  SCM  BE  Agoria Solar Team / KU Leuven 

Three-wheel (tadpole) challenger (new car: BluePoint Atlas) – they have built a new car to defend their title. It is named after the Atlas Mountains.

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; came 6th at iESC 18; came 1st and 6th at iESC 20; and won Carrera Solar Atacama 18. Their team number (8) is a long-standing tradition.

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

iESC  IT  Onda Solare 

Four-seat cruiser (Emilia 4 LT) – they won the American Solar Challenge (Cruiser class) in 2018, and they have written up their design process here, but they have since made substantial improvements to the vehicle, including to the aerodynamics, suspension, battery, and solar panels. There is also an unusual open tail.

Previously, Onda came 10th at WSC 13; participated in the WSC 19 Cruiser class; won the ASC 18 Cruiser class; came 10th at Abu Dhabi 15; and came 6th at iESC 16. Their team number (9) is taken from the SS 9, the highway through Bologna, which was once the Roman Via Aemilia (hence also the name of their vehicle).

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

11  iESC  DE  Hochschule Bochum Solar Car Team 

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. Their current plans appear to involve a hybrid solar-hydrogen vehicle. They will race two cars at older (11 and 42).

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)

21  iESC  SCM  NL  Solar Team Twente 

Three-wheel (tadpole) challenger (new car: Red Horizon) – they have built a three-wheeler this year, and will race both at Zolder and in Morocco.

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; came 1st and 2nd at iESC 18; and came 2nd and 4th at iESC 20. Their team number (21) is a pun and a wish for success in the race (“Twente-One”).

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

23  iESC  GB  University of Nottingham Solar Racing Team 

Cruiser (new team) – their rather radical approach is to modify a Renault Twizy to have solar panels and improved electrics.


public domain photo

31  iESC  CH  Solar Energy Racers 

Asymmetric challenger (new car: SER-4) – they raced their SER-3 in South Africa and Australia. They still have their SER-2, and they are also building a new car.

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.

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

34  iESC  TR  Istanbul Technical University (ITU) 

Challenger (new car: Ariba X) – they discuss their plans here.

Previously, ITU came 17th at WSC 13; participated at WSC 17; came 7th at iESC 16; and came 7th at iESC 20.

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

40  iESC  NL  Solar Team Eindhoven 

Cruiser (new car) – after building four “solar family cars,” their focus for 2021 is a Self-sustaining House On Wheels. However, they are also racing two cars at Zolder (5 and 40).

Previously, Eindhoven won the WSC 13 Cruiser class; won the WSC 15 Cruiser class; won the WSC 17 Cruiser class; won the WSC 19 Cruiser class; came 7th in the iESC 18 Cruiser class; and came 1st and 2nd in the iESC 20 Cruiser class. Their team number (40) is the Eindhoven telephone area code.

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

45  iESC  PL  Lodz Solar Team 

Four-seat cruiser (Eagle Two) – this team has some nice (Polish) news coverage here. They are working on improving their car.

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

51  SCM  SE  Chalmers Solar Team 

Three-wheel (tadpole) challenger (new car: Sköll) – they were the first Challenger-class team to reveal a render for their new car.

Previously, Chalmers came 21st at WSC 19 and participated at Swedish Solar Race 21.

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

77  SCM  MA  Mines Rabat Solar Team 

Asymmetric challenger (new car: Eleadora 2) – they have worked hard to complete this car (see this video).

Previously, Mines Rabat participated at MSRC 19.

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

81  iESC  TR  Solar Team Solaris (Dokuz Eylül University) 

Challenger (new car: S11) – they missed the last ESC, but hope to attend the next one with their new car.

Previously, Solaris participated in the WSC 13 Adventure class; came 25th at WSC 15; came 18th 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)

88  iESC  PL  PUT Solar Dynamics (Poznań University of Technology) 

Two-seat cruiser (new team with car: Klara) – they have revealed their car, which weighs 750 kg and has an 18.5 kWh battery. This (Polish) video describes their project.

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

99  iESC  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 appear to have no online presence at all, and I have extremely grave doubts about their participation (although their institution does have a Formula Student team).


public domain photo

This page last updated 10:56 on 19 August 2021 AEST.


European solar car teams

Although the World Solar Challenge and the Sasol Solar Challenge have been cancelled, the American Solar Challenge and a special iLumen European Solar Challenge are going ahead. Here, as a placeholder, is a list of 24 European teams from 11 countries (including Turkey) – 15 Challengers and 9 Cruisers. None of them have registered for ASC, but about half of them are likely to compete in iESC in September (others might participate in the Albi Eco Race in October). You may wish to follow the official iESC social media at        (click on the icons).

In recent news, PUT from Poland have revealed their Cruiser Klara, Chalmers have revealed a tadpole render, Twente have announced that they are also building a three-wheeler (called Red Horizon), and HUST have revealed a three-fairing design.


NL  Vattenfall Solar Team (Delft) 

Challenger (new car: Nuna11) – this year will be the last year that Delft partners with Vattenfall. They have been recruiting for the 2022 Sasol Solar Challenge.

Previously, Delft won WSC 13; won WSC 15; won WSC 17; came 12th at WSC 19; won SASOL 14; won SASOL 16; and won SASOL 18. Their team number (3) is a long-standing tradition.

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

FR  Eco Solar Breizh 

Symmetric challenger (Heol) – they are regulars at the Albi Eco Race.

Previously, Breizh came 14th at Abu Dhabi 15; came 7th at iESC 18; came 5th at Albi Eco 18; came 3rd at Albi Eco 19; and won MSRC 19.


picture credit (click image to zoom)

NL  Top Dutch Solar Racing 

Challenger (new car) – I am not sure what their plans are, exactly.

Previously, Top Dutch came 4th at WSC 19 and came 3rd at iESC 20.

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

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)

BE  Agoria Solar Team / KU Leuven 

Challenger (new car) – they are building a new car, and planning their next racing adventure.

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; came 6th at iESC 18; came 1st and 6th at iESC 20; and won Carrera Solar Atacama 18. Their team number (8) is a long-standing tradition.

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

IT  Onda Solare 

Four-seat cruiser (Emilia 4 LT) – they won the American Solar Challenge (Cruiser class) in 2018, and they have written up their design process here, but they have since made substantial improvements to the vehicle, including to the aerodynamics, suspension, battery, and solar panels. There is also an unusual open tail.

Previously, Onda came 10th at WSC 13; participated in the WSC 19 Cruiser class; won the ASC 18 Cruiser class; came 10th at Abu Dhabi 15; and came 6th at iESC 16. Their team number (9) is taken from the SS 9, the highway through Bologna, which was once the Roman Via Aemilia (hence also the name of their vehicle).

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

11  DE  Hochschule Bochum Solar Car Team 

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. Their current plans appear to involve a hybrid solar-hydrogen vehicle.

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)

12  GB  Cambridge University Eco Racing 

Four-seat cruiser (Helia) – they will be staying in the UK this year.

Previously, Cambridge came 22nd at WSC 15; participated in the WSC 19 Cruiser class; and came 10th at iESC 16.

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

20  GB  Durham University Electric Motorsport 

Asymmetric challenger (Ortus) – Durham are the UK’s premier team. They have been upgrading their car after racing in Australia in 2019. They are one of the few teams to report a CdA value (0.107 for Ortus). They displayed great initiative by running their own Ouston Solar Challenge when Covid-19 prevented their travel to iESC 2020.

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)

21  NL  Solar Team Twente 

Three-wheel challenger (new car: Red Horizon) – they are building a three-wheeler this year.

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; came 1st and 2nd at iESC 18; and came 2nd and 4th at iESC 20. Their team number (21) is a pun and a wish for success in the race (“Twente-One”).

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

22  SE  MDH Solar Team 

Challenger (new car) – I am not sure what their plans are, exactly.

Previously, MDH participated at WSC 17 and participated at WSC 19.

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

23  SE  Halmstad University Solar Team 

Three-wheel challenger (new car: Heart 4) – they have revealed a three-fairing car, which they will be racing in Sweden.

Previously, HUST participated at WSC 19.

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

31  CH  Solar Energy Racers 

Asymmetric challenger (SER-3) – they raced their SER-3 in South Africa and Australia. However, they still have their SER-2.

Previously, SER-3 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.

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

34  TR  Istanbul Technical University (ITU) 

Challenger (B.O.W.) – the name of their old car (“B.O.W.”) stood for “Bees On Wheels,” from the ITU logo. I am not sure of their current plans.

Previously, ITU came 17th at WSC 13; participated at WSC 17; came 7th at iESC 16; and came 7th at iESC 20.

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

40  NL  Solar Team Eindhoven 

Cruiser (new car) – after building four “solar family cars,” their focus for 2021 is a Self-sustaining House On Wheels.

Previously, Eindhoven won the WSC 13 Cruiser class; won the WSC 15 Cruiser class; won the WSC 17 Cruiser class; won the WSC 19 Cruiser class; came 7th in the iESC 18 Cruiser class; and came 1st and 2nd in the iESC 20 Cruiser class. Their team number (40) is the Eindhoven telephone area code.

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

43  GB  Ardingly Ifield Solar 

Two-seat cruiser (Ardingly Solar Car) – this high-school team came 6th in the 2018 iESC Cruiser class, and have upgraded the car since then. However, their focus does not seem to be on racing at this time.

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)

45  PL  Lodz Solar Team 

Four-seat cruiser (Eagle Two) – this team has some nice (Polish) news coverage here. They are working on improving their car.

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

46  SE  JU Solar Team 

Challenger (new car) – they have announced that they are aiming for the 2022 Sasol Solar Challenge.

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: Anthony Dekker / Right: Anthony Dekker (click images to zoom – OLD PICS)

51  SE  Chalmers Solar Team 

Three-wheel (tadpole) challenger (new car: Sköll) – they were the first Challenger-class team to reveal a render for their new car.

Previously, Chalmers came 21st at WSC 19.

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

70  DE  Sonnenwagen Aachen 

Challenger (new car: Sonnenwagen 3) – this team did very well in 2019, in spite of being blown off the road. They have begun production of a new car.

Previously, Aachen participated at WSC 17; came 6th at WSC 19; came 3rd at iESC 18; and came 5th and 8th at iESC 20. Their team number (70) is the number they raced with in 2017.

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

84  TR  Solar Team Solaris (Dokuz Eylül University) 

Asymmetric challenger (S10) – they did some testing before ESC (which they were sadly unable to attend). They have not mentioned building a new car.

Previously, Solaris participated in the WSC 13 Adventure class; came 25th at WSC 15; came 18th 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)

899  TR  ESTU Solar Team (ex Anadolu) 

Challenger (new car: Sunatolia III) – this is the team formerly known as Anadolu. Their exact plans are unclear.

Previously, ESTU came 19th at WSC 15; came 2nd at SASOL 14; and participated at SASOL 16.


picture credit (click image to zoom – OLD PIC)

900  PL  PUT Solar Dynamics (Poznań University of Technology) 

Two-seat cruiser (new team with car: Klara) – they have revealed their car, which weighs 750 kg and has an 18.5 kWh battery. This (Polish) video describes their project.

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

901  EE  Solaride  

Two-seat cruiser (new team) – this new team from Estonia hopes to build a Cruiser. They are based in the city of Tartu.


picture credit (click image to zoom)

This page last updated 17:37 on 10 April 2021 AEST.


iESC Special 2021 Edition!

In breaking news, there will be a special 2021 edition of the 24-hour iLumen European Solar Challenge (iESC) on September 18-19 this year. Thirteen teams have already confirmed participation.

For more details, follow the official race social media at        (click on the icons).


The Ouston Solar Challenge

Durham University Electric Motorsport (DUEM) is the UK’s premier solar racing team. After previous participation in 2015 and 2017, they came 14th at the 2019 World Solar Challenge, crossing Australia from the Timor Sea to the Spencer Gulf on solar power alone. As with all the other major solar car teams, I have followed their progress with keen interest.

The iLumen European Solar Challenge (iESC) is one of the world’s top four solar car events, as well as being valuable training for teams intending to go to the World Solar Challenge (see my extensive coverage of iESC). The main part of the iESC is a tough 24-hour endurance race at Circuit Zolder. DUEM naturally wanted to participate this September. When the Covid situation prevented them from doing so, they decided to run their own event – a kind of “virtual iESC” – synchronised with the Zolder race. To my knowledge, they are the only team in the world to have done something like that.

 
Left: Durham University Electric Motorsport (DUEM) wth their car Ortus at the 2019 World Solar Challenge; Right: I watched DUEM race this year via social media – this is the closest I can get to Durham in these difficult times (both photos mine). Click images to zoom.

The location chosen by DUEM was Ouston Airfield, a former World War II airfield about 50 km north of Durham University. The NW quadrant of the airfield was used as a racetrack between 1959 and 1964 (the airfield now houses Albemarle Barracks). To mimic the 4.011 km track at Circuit Zolder, DUEM planned out a 4.5 km course at Ouston mixing straights and tight turns (runway 04/22, part of runway 14/32, and the eastern perimeter track). However, examining Ouston Airfield on Google Maps reveals weeds springing up through cracks in the tarmac. Not perhaps the best place to drive a solar car, you might think! To make matters worse, while Zolder had bright sunshine and blue skies this year, Ouston had cloudy skies and overnight rain.

 
Left: DUEM and Ortus at Ouston (DUEM photo); Right: A concrete pillbox at Ouston reflects its former RAF identity (photo: Dean Allison). Click images to zoom.

So how did DUEM do? They clocked up 414 km, which is equivalent to 103 laps at Circuit Zolder. Given the weather conditions, we should be comparing their performance to the rainy 2018 iESC event. They would have ranked 8th in the Challenger class at Zolder that year, which isn’t too shabby, considering the seven flat tyres DUEM experienced as a result of the bumpy road surface at Ouston.

However, the iESC isn’t just about showing what one’s solar car can do – it is very much also a training event, giving newly recruited novices experience in many different aspects of solar racing. One such aspect is in fact dealing with less-than-ideal road surfaces. The highway south from Darwin incorporates some tricky features such as cattle grids, and solar vehicles must be robust enough to take such features in their stride. DUEM’s “Ouston Solar Challenge” probably provided better training in this regard than the iESC does.

 
Left: Nuna9 crosses a cattle grid in the 2017 World Solar Challenge (photo: Jorrit Lousberg); Right: the challenge of the track surface at Ouston (detail of DUEM photo). Click images to zoom.

As well as making cars robust enough to resist vibration due to the road surface, there are also procedural factors associated with “nasties” on the road. Vanguard/scout subteams must check for issues such as dead kangaroos on the road, either dealing with them or notifying the subteam in the escort vehicle. That subteam, in turn, must keep the solar car driver informed of hazards as they come up. At Ouston, DUEM marked hazards on the track with traffic cones, and their escort vehicle did a superb job of instructing the solar-car driver by radio on dealing with the hazards. Again, this is an aspect of solar racing not really tested at iESC.

 
Left: Twente’s 2019 escort vehicle (photo: Patrick Ooms); Right: DUEM’s escort vehicle guides Ortus through the hazards (detail of DUEM photo). Click images to zoom.

One activity common to the international family of solar car teams (whether at iESC, the World Solar Challenge, or during DUEM’s 24 hours at Ouston) is the need to work on the car from time to time. DUEM, like the teams that raced at iESC, has (I’m sure) learned valuable lessons from doing so. Of course, iESC offered the luxury of pit boxes, which were rather lacking at Ouston.

 
Left: Twente does a rapid motor replacement at iESC 2020 (photo: Martina Ketelaar/Andreas Kajim/Solar Team Twente); Right: DUEM works on Ortus in the rain (DUEM photo). Click images to zoom.

I am not entirely certain what DUEM will be doing with the experience they gained at Ouston, but you can follow their progress on their website or on their social media (click on the icons):