Biofuels 100th indy 500 will host emerging green tech day

Published on December 28th, 2010 | by Tina Casey


2011 Indy 500 Has Green Goodies in Store

December 28th, 2010 by  

100th indy 500 will host emerging green tech day2011 marks the 100th anniversary of the Indy 500, and Indiana’s venerable celebration of the motor vehicle will mark the occasion by hosting its first Emerging Tech Day, featuring cutting edge alternative fuel vehicles cooked up by teams of college and university students.  All you other states better look out, because not only will the event help shine a mainstream light on new clean tech for Indy 500 fans audiences nationwide, but it will also help cement Indiana’s leadership position in clean vehicle tech and green jobs.

Indy 500 Emerging Tech Day

Clean Tech Day is slated for May 7, and it will host Dartmouth College’s Formula Hybrid competition featuring student-designed, high efficiency, plug-in high performance vehicles. It will also include the 20-year-old American Solar Challenge and the Purdue evGrandPrix, a new event that ties into Purdue University’s focus on developing the next generation of electric vehicles – which in turn is part of a comprehensive collaboration between Indiana businesses, government and educational institutions to push the state into an electric vehicle future.

Indy 500 and a Greener NASCAR

Emerging Tech Day is part of an industry-wide effort by NASCAR to cut its carbon emissions. Let’s just say that if a fuel-focused industry like NASCAR can get itself together, anybody can, so it’s instructive to look at the range of actions that have been undertaken. NASCAR tracks are beginning to install solar energy and build new facilities to energy efficient LEED standards, and to host races that are offset with purchased renewable energy credits. Major companies are also starting to use a NASCAR as a promotional tie-in for green campaigns, such as Office Depot’s electronics recycling and new energy-saving shipping initiative.

Image: Indianapolis Motor Speedway by hyku on

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About the Author

specializes in military and corporate sustainability, advanced technology, emerging materials, biofuels, and water and wastewater issues. Tina’s articles are reposted frequently on Reuters, Scientific American, and many other sites. Views expressed are her own. Follow her on Twitter @TinaMCasey and Google+.

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  • Travis R

    This article is a bit misleading, and I feel I need to clarify a couple of things.

    The Indianapolis 500 race in May and the “Month of May” events that lead up to it, including the Emerging Tech Day, have nothing to do with NASCAR. This is all put on by the Indianapolis Motor Speedway (IMS).

    NASCAR is a motorsports sanctioning body that does sanction a race at IMS later in the year called the Brickyard 400, but has nothing to do with the Indy 500. The cars that race on Memorial Day weekend are IndyCars, and the Indy 500 is a sanctioned IndyCar event that is part of the IndyCar Series schedule. IndyCar has its history rooted in the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, but they are separate entities.

    NASCAR and IndyCar sanction events at places like IMS and other tracks around the world, but they do not own any tracks, and IMS is an independent, family-owned facility that hosts IndyCar- and NASCAR-sanctioned races. The same can be said about your article about the Pocono track – it is an independent facility that hosts a NASCAR race.

    While I understand that NASCAR is trying to make some green changes of their own, they have nothing to do with the solar installation at Pocono, Emerging Tech Day at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, or the Indy 500 race itself. Let’s not confuse “motorsports” with “NASCAR.” They are not synonymous – NASCAR is simply one form of motorsport.

    In this case, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway deserves the credit for putting together Emerging Tech Day.

    Anyway, I hope I don’t sound like a motorsports snob, but I just felt that there were a few things in this article that needed a bit more explanation. I hope that helps!

    • Tina Casey

      Travis: Thanks for all the extra information, it really rounds out the picture. In the interest of brevity we sometimes lose a lot of detail but hopefully don’t lose accuracy!

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