- Solar Team Twente presented their new solar car
- One of the major innovations is an electronic component that improves the efficiency of solar revenues.
The new car is half a metre narrower than the RED One, the car that placed second in Australia in 2015 after an extraordinary and exciting battle. The ever-innovative team also revealed one of the greatest secret weapons of this edition: SABINE 2.0. “Our strength lies in our will to innovate and improve. We were able to build the best solar car in the world by optimising all the different techniques in the car”, says Olivier Berghuis, team manager of Solar Team Twente.
Last year’s battle was exciting with a blood-curdling final result. Solar Team Twente came in second, just three minutes behind the winner. Olivier Berghuis: “The competition with the other teams encourages us to do that in which we excel: innovate. We, on our own, have developed techniques that provide answers to the visible effects of environmental pollution and globalisation. Winning the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge is just one of the many challenges that we face with the team.”
SABINE 2.0 is one of the biggest innovations in the RED Shift. It is an electronic component in the car that provides an efficiency boost to the revenues of the solar panel. The team finished half an hour earlier in 2015, thanks to the SABINE. Technical Manager and Race Leader Lars Klein: “SABINE is back. She has been completely redesigned and is now twice as efficient. We expect that SABINE 2.0 will save us an hour, this time.”
SABINE 2.0 is not the only thing responsible for the expected time savings. “Two other high-quality electronic innovations will support SABINE 2.0 in the car; a golden combination”, says Klein. The team announced that these three innovations have made electric driving a lot more efficient. “These efficiency gains in the electrical system brings the transition towards sustainable mobility around the world a lot closer”, Klein assures us. The team will announce what exactly these innovations mean at a later date.
Another significant change to the car, compared to the RED One, is that the car has become half a metre narrower. This change stems from the modifications in the regulations. The maximum allowed surface of the solar panel has been reduced from 6 to 4 square metres. In addition to this change, the team expects that they can gain much from small changes in the design. For example, the main wing has been placed forward in relation to the wheels of the car.
The name RED Shift stands for the shift of an era, which the team wants to bring about. “It is our ambition to contribute to a liveable world, in which sustainable systems replace fossil fuel”, says communication manager Gearte Nynke Noteboom. The name was picked from a “NameOurCar” campaign, in which the student team from Twente gave its fans the unique opportunity to contribute to the new solar car. Lourens Lenssen from Oosterwolde came up with the name and won the campaign. His prize was taking a ride in the car.
Solar Team Twente will participate in the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge on October 8, 2017: the prestigious and well-known race for cars that are powered by solar energy. Solar Team Twente, and over fifty other participants, will drive their solar car 3000 kilometres through the outback of Australia. The race is divided into four different classes. Twente’s Solar Team is participating in the Challenger class; the Formula 1 class for solar cars.
Solar Team Twente consists of nineteen students from Saxion and the University of Twente. They are turning their dreams into reality: winning the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge in October 2017. Solar Team Twente also consists of a strong network with more than 150 partners. They practice top sport together, and they are building the fastest solar car in the world.