Connecting With The Community

Electrical System, Featured, General, Outreach, Solar, Texas / Monday, October 18th, 2021

After our triumphant victory at Texas Motor Speedway, our mentor, Dr. Alain Semet thought it would be a good idea to take our car, La Cucaracha, to a local car show to connect with the community and display our hard work.

Over the roars of the engines from the other cars, we explained our uniquely special project. Many people were unfamiliar with solar cars, so we explained everything about the internals of the car and our race at Texas Motor Speedway. We talked about components on the car such as lithium-ion batteries, our solar panels that we used, as well as the MPPTs (Maximum Power Point Tracker), Dyno (Dynamometer), and cooling system. We were able to illustrate how we competed in the Texas heat, how we kept cool with computer fans, and how our strategy paid off when our main competitor’s battery died on the third day. 

 Teddie Blahous [12] rests inside La Cucaracha at the Magnolia Car Show

Alexis Lee [11], a junior on the team, couldn’t contain her excitement as well. “It was so inspiring to meet people interested in the solar car from a variety of generations. Our audience ranged from young kids in strollers all the way to retired Boeing engineers. We commonly discussed Washington’s move to all electric cars, and the innovation to fight climate change. We hope to inspire others to take on influential projects, the same way we did!” It was an incredible sight to witness generations old and new coming to see our automobile and how blown away they were by how it looked and operated. I recall assisting two kids, ages 7 and 8, who were so excited about the car, asking questions about how the solar panels generated electricity, how that energy was stored, and how the car charged. There were also far older people who informed us that we were doing something that would have an impact on future generations, and that they were still glad that the engineering industry had hope because of people like us.

It was truly an amazing sight to see so many people interested in high school solar car racing. Hopefully, to those who attended, interested in solar powered vehicles, or are reading this blog post, it inspires you to start your own solar car team or transition to electric cars!  Feel free to contact us if you want more information on how you can do that, or if you have any questions on that process.

Hailin Truman [11], Teddie Blahous [12], and Daniel Sung [10] explain the car to visitors

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.