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Illini Solar Car

Illini Solar Car

Team overview

Illini Solar Car

  • Car name

    Argo

  • University

    University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

  • Country

    United States

  • WSC class

    Adventure

  • Static Scrutineering

    Pass

Daily event results

Arrival time Control stop Kms from Darwin
Day 1 Oct 9 13:17:50 Daly Waters 588.225
Day 2 Oct 10 10:42:30 Tennant Creek 986.718
Day 3 Oct 11 13:20:30 Kulgera 1765.894
Day 4 Oct 12 14:57:57 Coober Pedy 2178.46
Day 5 Oct 13 13:03:37 Port Augusta 2720.27
Day 6 Oct 14 10:47:39 Adelaide 3020.59

How many times has your team participated in the event?

This is our first time participating in the event. Our team was founded in 2014 and has overcome operational difficulties of starting a new team and fostering support and acquiring resources. We are now bringing our first car, Argo to our first race.

What is the design philosophy behind your solar car?

Despite being a new team, we challenge ourselves to build a car of a higher standard. We wanted to build a car with high energy efficiency, and we knew that weight, aerodynamic efficiency, and the efficiencies of various major components contribute significantly to that.
We decided to build a carbon fiber monocoque with the lowest frontal area possible, and to use the best available motor, batteries, and solar cells. A lot of other parts were subsequently designed and built based on the manufacturing resources we have available with the consideration of time limitations.

What is unique about your solar car?

Our car is unique in that most parts on the car were designed and built by students. We provide students with more well-rounded and in-depth experience in doing so. Every circuit board used on the car, such as the car dashboard, battery Every circuit board used on the car, such as the car dashboard, battery protection system, and research grade power electronics was designed and coded in-house. The carbon fiber monocoque was designed, analyzed, and built from scratch. The solar array was also encapsulated by our members in the clean room facilities at our university.

Why does your team value participating in the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge?

We believe in raising more awareness in renewable energy through participating in large scale events such as the BWSC. Being at the same place and seeing all other teams working towards the same goal also inspires us to design and build an even better car. Besides, overcoming the logistical challenges in getting to Australia and finishing our first race means a lot to our team and our sponsors who have supported us all this while.

What is the one thing your team is looking forward to when you visit Australia?

We look forward to the entire experience of racing across the Australian outback.