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Solar-Powered Vehicles Race across the United States

Solar-powered vehicle from University of Minnesota

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Today is the start of the 2010 American Solar Challenge (ASC) race. Solar-powered vehicles will leave from Broken Arrow, Oklahoma and head to Naperville, Illinois today. In three days, drivers will start in Topeka, Kansas and go to a checkpoint in Jefferson City, Missouri before heading to Rolla, Missouri.

Many of the solar-powered vehicle teams come from universities, like Stanford, Northwestern, Illinois State, and Iowa State University. But, like in the Solar Decathlon, some also come from other countries (i.e. Germany, Taiwan and Canada).

A total of 17 teams are participating in this year’s race.

“Researchers have been incorporating solar energy technology into a broader range of vehicles, from boats to automobiles and even airplanes. For example, the 2010 Toyota Prius even uses a small photovoltaic panel to help provide power for its interior,” CoolerPlanet reports. Perhaps we will see this race turn into a major national event in coming years.

For now, it looks quite interesting and fun, but still quite small.

For more info on the American Solar Challenge or World Solar Challenge, visit those links.

Image Credit: TJCoffey via flickr/CC license

 
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Zach is tryin' to help society help itself one word at a time. He spends most of his time here on CleanTechnica as its director, chief editor, and CEO. Zach is recognized globally as an electric vehicle, solar energy, and energy storage expert. He has presented about cleantech at conferences in India, the UAE, Ukraine, Poland, Germany, the Netherlands, the USA, Canada, and Curaçao. Zach has long-term investments in Tesla [TSLA], NIO [NIO], Xpeng [XPEV], Ford [F], ChargePoint [CHPT], Amazon [AMZN], Piedmont Lithium [PLL], Lithium Americas [LAC], Albemarle Corporation [ALB], Nouveau Monde Graphite [NMGRF], Talon Metals [TLOFF], Arclight Clean Transition Corp [ACTC], and Starbucks [SBUX]. But he does not offer (explicitly or implicitly) investment advice of any sort.

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