Trials in Australia of the Team’s entry for the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge included using a Tinytag data logger to provide valuable performance data with regard to temperature fluctuations, to help optimise the vehicle design.
Solar Team Great Britain is building a solar-powered car to
compete in the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge in October 2017.
Racing across Australia from Darwin to Adelaide, a distance of just
over 3000km, the Team hopes to demonstrate the very best of British
engineering and innovation. Throughout this process, the Team
wishes to inspire students and young professionals to apply their
talents to sustainability.
The car has been entered into the Cruiser Class; this focusses
on making further progress in the development of a road-legal
family sized solar powered car which can carry upto four
passengers. The end goal is to reach the end of the course with the
most passengers but with the lowest amount of initial energy. The
Challenge takes place over five days, with a defined 3 hour window
for the final time of arrival.
The Tinytag Plus
2 data logger with two thermistor probes was among a large
amount of measuring and monitoring equipment used on the trial,
which will help the Team to prepare a computer model to optimise
the car's design. The Tinytag data was particularly important as
the silicone solar panels used are temperature sensitive - if they
get too hot for example, they stop performing as effectively.
The recorded data illustrated how the temperature varied at
different speeds, and with different amounts of insulation. The
temperature curve showed how the performance of the insulation is
extremely dependent on the speed of the car. In addition, the data
has been passed to the Team's battery supplier to illustrate the
worst case temperature scenarios that can be expected, so this can
be taken into consideration for design and manufacture.
Find out more about Solar
Team Great Britain.
The image shows the car used in the trial for gathering data
- this information will help shape the design of the actual vehicle
entered in the Challenge.
The graph shows how leaving the car parked in direct
sunlight over a lunch stop resulted in a major spike above ambient