ASC 2014 Day 1
Our starting position was fifth in a lineup of ten cars, and we started ASC 2014 at 9:04 am. With a total downtime of 20 minutes for electrical repairs, the team is making good progress. We stopped for the night in Bowie, TX. Tomorrow we will finish the stage to arrive in Norman, OK. We are in the race for the top positions with Iowa State University, Principia, and the University of Michigan, who is currently in first place. All of us arrived at the stage stop in Weatherford Texas within 30 minutes of each other, so it is indeed a very close race!
On our day of rest, we worked hard to prepare backup circuit boards, organize our supplies, and prep our support vehicles. This paid off today, as we had no issues we could not quickly and easily solve. Our team worked well together in their race crew positions to minimize downtime, and the weather was sunny, which always helps!
For those of you who are new to solar car racing, the American Solar Challenge is a staged race. This means that we have to make it to certain cities by a certain date to continue racing. Once we reach those locations, we are done for the day besides charging the battery off of the solar array. There are also control stops, which the officials use to keep tags on all the teams. Control stops consist of a total of half an hour of solar charging and half an hour of rest. Teams must make it to control stops within a certain time frame, or else then will likely not complete a stage of the race.
Thank you to our sponsor of the day, PaR Systems! PaR helped us to create the chassis of our car by water-jet cutting fiberglass panels that are slotted together and glued to created our chassis.
Please look for the ASC 2014 and our UMNSVP twitter feeds for updated information. Otherwise, we will continue to update this blog when time permits!
The team was proud to see Centaurus III lined up with all of the other solar cars on the starting line!
Everyone is proud of the progress we have made, and how efficient and organized our pit stops have been. They are the best ones yet, and we are working well together as a team!