Solar race: Fingers crossed

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It sounds like wishful thinking but the Charles Darwin University (CDU) is recruiting a team to represent the Territory in the World Solar Challenge in 2023.

The CDU took part in the longest distance solar car race in the world from 1995 to 2003, with its signature Desert Rose solar car representing the Territory in several races and breaking a world record at a speed of 135mph at the World Solar Rally in Japan in 1995.

Hundreds of solar cars travel south from Darwin in the competition that spans over 3,000 kilometres.

“Following the hiatus, the university returns this year with plans to form a talented and enthusiastic team to represent the Territory in this prestigious international event,” says a CDU release.

Team Leader Leith Darrach said the new design should be relatable to Territorians.

“We want to build a solar car that looks like a household car, which people can look at and think ‘I want one of that’.”

Mr Darrach said some of his students were already interested in being involved.

“This time we are going to engage the students and show them about the future because electric technology is going to be the way,” he said.

“If we get them involved, they can become experienced in their field even before they enter the workforce.”

A concept and design for the new CDU solar car will be developed in the coming year and the official testing and race will take place in October 2023.

PHOTO: Desert Rose 1996.

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