In another recent solar powered racer debut, this time out of the Philippines, we continue to see how truly global the field is making up the upcoming World Solar Challenge in October in the outback of Australia. Team Solar Philippines has debuted Sikat II and, like the other teams in the race, it is made up mostly of college students.
De La Salle University said last week the car was the collaborative work of 50 mechanical and electrical engineering students plus six faculty members. It also, like the other vehicles being unveiled for this event, has its share of corporate sponsors that “helped make it possible,” including in this case First Phil Holdings, First Gen, Energy Development Corporation, Sunpower, Ufreight, Shell, and Motolite.
Sikat II is an improved upon version of previous solar racers Team Solar Philippines has built. The team is aiming high this year – in the top three of the competition to be exact – so they spent seven months of their lives making this reportedly the most efficient version to date.
The entry from the Philippines runs at an average speed of 80 kph (49.7 MPH) and a maximum speed of 110 kph (68.3 MPH). It uses Sunpower Silicon solar panels with an estimated efficiency of 22%. It also uses a power output of 1300W.
Of note on this car as well is a new battery management system, improved telemetry, upgraded wiring, and cruise control. Its brakes are also newly designed and the solar car has a new suspension system. For aerodynamics, it has a lower coefficient of drag achieved through modifications in fairings.
The World Solar Challenge, established in 1987, this year boasts teams from over 20 countries. Teams who we’ve already highlighted include Cambridge, Delft University of Technology, Stanford University, University of Michigan, University of Minnesota, École de technologie supérieure, University of New South Wales, University of Bologna and University of Toronto.