Scrutineering Day 2

After being the only team to complete scrutineering yesterday, today was considerably more laid back, but it was not without things to do. In the morning, several team members attended a safety meeting to get a refresher on first aid and to make sure that we are being as safe as possible during the race.

In the meantime, the electrical team was busy building backup boards and ensuring that everything on the car was working up to our standards; sometimes barely meeting the rules is just not enough. This included building a new driver interface board and tweaking the battery protection for more reliable operation.

Our strategy team is also hard at work developing the suite of tools that we will use to determine how fast to go at any given time. Headed up by Tyler and Konrad, they have been painstakingly developing models of every possible aspect of the car so we can accurately predict its behavior.

The remainder of the day was marked by team members walking around the pits familiarizing themselves with other teams and offering our services to them to help them qualify for the race. After all, what fun would it be if we were the only team racing? We have especially been helping out our pit neighbors Oregon State University, a first-time solar car team that was funded out of the team members' pockets; we really admire their team members' dedication. Sam helped Illinois State (who a purchased our 2001 car Borealis I for the 2005 race) debug their motor controller. We have also been in close contact with our other pit neighbors and good friends Principia College.

Unfortunately, our day was cut short by a line of thunderstorms rolling through about dinnertime. Thanks to our strategy team, we were well-advised of the weather and were able to put our car away before the storm hit. We elected not to risk damaging our car, since all the small projects we are currently working on are not time-critical and should be finished in time for the qualifier. As far as we know, we are still the only team that is fully scrutineered.

We are looking forward tomorrow to possibly get Centaurus out on the track to have our drivers run a few laps and shake down the car before qualifying begins on Thursday.

--David Towey, Crew Chief

July 8, 2008



As a parent of one of you ... THANK YOU FOR THESE UPDATES! I know you must be tired after your busy days, but we really appreciate it. We were especially moved by the news of you helping other teams. That is true team spirit. FYI, the Oregon State team was mentioned on the national radio news the other day; I bet you guys will make the news for helping them!

Posted by: Betsy Heller | July 8, 2008 10:36 PM

You guys are amazing! (Emily, are you okay with being "one of the guys"? Congratulations again on being ready to race. I think it's wonderful that you're helping other teams. As I've visited the other teams' websites, I see that almost everyone has an "adopt a cell" program. Neat idea. Have fun today!

Posted by: Jeanne LaMoore | July 9, 2008 10:19 AM

Pretty sure solar cars are the coolest thing to exist!

Posted by: Kate | July 9, 2008 2:00 PM

From a former team member, congratulations on building a new car, and being the first through scrutineering! I'm glad to see that the team continues to design and build one of the best piece of engineering that I have seen. Also, I like that while staying competitive, you are continuing the tradition of helping other teams when they need it.
Keep up the good work!

Posted by: Andy Clements | July 9, 2008 4:52 PM

Keep those updates coming in. We appreciate being able to be up to date. I see that you have at least two more cars ready to race (Red River and Calgary) Thanks for helping others out. That is true team spirit.

Posted by: Roger Coffey (Tyler's Dad) | July 9, 2008 10:23 PM