Day five of the American Solar Challenge!
Today, we woke up in Springfield, MO. We tore down our tents and drove to Wilson's Creek National Battlefield, where we normalized our array and charged our battery off the sun. We got a bit of rain at 8:00 AM, but that soon passed and the sky started to clear, with lots of sun beating down for the start of the stage.
The third and longest stage started at 9:00 AM with a loop around the battlefield. The road was beautiful, lined with trees except where corn fields as old as the Civil War interrupted the forest.
Minnesota started fourth, rolling off the start line at 9:03 AM. After the Battlefield loop, we made our way to MO-13, then MO-7. Today, we are cruising towards the Brown V. Board of Education National Historic Site in Topeka, KS.
Today, we arrived in Topeka at 5:00 PM, an hour before the checkpoint closed. We manually normalized our array until 5:45 PM, the 45-minute mandatory checkpoint stop window. Because 5:45 PM was so close to the end of the day at 6:00 PM, we decided to stop for the day at the Brown V. Board of Education National Historic Site. Tomorrow we will start driving 15 minutes early because of this.
At 5:45 PM, we bolted on our normalization hardware and kept our car charging until 8:00 PM, when the battery was turned in to our observer. Iowa St. stayed at today's checkpoint as well, so we decided to go to dinner with part of their team after charging our battery. Our two teams flooded a local Steak 'n Shake, where we all got cold shakes to end our day nicely.