Sunswift IV – Solar Powered Car

University of New South Wales’ Sunswift solar racing team left for Darwin last weekend along with their new solar powered car that can attain speeds of up to 115km/h using the same amount of power as some small household appliances.
 
The Sunswift team will be in Darwin to participate in this year’s Global Green Challenge; a 3000km race from Darwin to Adelaide. The Global Green Challenge grew from the World Solar Challenge – the world’s leading showcase of the latest advances in hybrid, electric, solar, low emission, and alternative energy vehicles. 38 Solar cars and teams from 17 countries are poised to take on the Eco Challenge category of the Global Green Challenge. 
 
Sunswift IV is a three-wheeled, hand-built carbon fibre machine. The car cruises at 90km/h and can reach a top speed of 115km/h using just 1,300 watts. The vehicle has around the same length and width as a small sedan but half the height and one-tenth the weight. The single-seater car is emissions free and can run on battery power, stored from its solar cell array, for up to five hours when sunlight is not available.
 
Further specifications of the Sunswift IV:
 
Dimensions
– (L) 4.6m (W) 1.8m (H) 1.8m
Body & Chassis – (Frame) Monocoque (Body Material) Carbon Fiber
Suspension – (Front) Double Wishbone (Rear) Trailing Arm
Steering – Rack and Pinion
Wheels & Tires – (Number) 3 (Wheels) Carbon Fiber (Tires) Dunlop Solarma
Brakes – (Front) Hydraulic dual redundancy (Rear) Hand brake (Regen) CSIRO wheelmotor
Energy Storage – (Chemistry) Lithium Polymer (Weight) 24.75kg
Motor – (Type) Brushless CSIRO 3 phase DC (Power) 1800W (Efficiency) 98%
Controller – (Type) Tritium wave sculptor (Power) 20KW (Efficiency) 97%
Solar Array – (Quantity) 400 (Type) Silicon A300 + Topcells UNSW (Efficiency) 22%
Performance – (Solar Only@ 5.998m2) 1300W (Max Speed)115 km/hr (Est. Avg.) 85 km/hr
Project Cost – (Cost) $280,000 (Project Time) 18 months