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Top Universities From Around The World Confirm Their Place In Abu Dhabi Solar Challenge
(8 October 2014)


The Abu Dhabi Solar Challenge took on a truly global flavor this week as top university teams from around the world confirmed their place in the Challenge at a conference held at Masdar Institute. This included the Petroleum Institute Team, who will fly the flag for the UAE, in entering the Abu Dhabi Solar Challenge

The Solar Challenge is sponsored by Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC), and hosted by Abu Dhabi’s renewable energy company Masdar, as part of Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week.  

Representatives from as far afield as the US, Italy and Japan attended the conference and confirmed their place in the Middle East’s first International Solarcar Federation-sanctioned challenge which takes place from 16-19 January 2015.

Although they are not competing in the inaugural Abu Dhabi Solar Challenge, local universities including United Arab Emirates University, Abu Dhabi University and the Higher Colleges of Technology also participated in the conference. They will also host competing international universities, such as Principia College from USA and University of Bologna based in Italy.

The partnerships between universities will create an environment for knowledge sharing and provide a stepping-stone for local and regional universities to explore their strengths in engineering with a view to entering future solar competitions.

Giuseppe Coia, team manager of Italy’s Onda Solare, said: “The partnership between teams and universities is important because it provides opportunity for students to get involved and take a lead in delivering a complex project. Working with team members, over time they are able to make the idea of a solar car a reality; gaining incredible experience along the way.”

“Our partnership allows my students to share all they know about designing, building, and racing solar cars,” added John Broere, representative of the Principia College Solar Car Team. “Taking everything we know into a new group dynamic can be incredibly stimulating for everyone involved. With the added perspective of our UAE partners, we should be able to make our entry better than it has ever been before.”

Petroleum Institute student and suspension specialist of the team, Yousuf Al Madhani echoed the value of academic partnerships: “I am looking forward to meeting the other teams from all over the world and having opportunity to exchange knowledge and to challenge them fairly.”

The other teams from across the wider Middle East region include HAVIN 2 from Qazvin Azad University, Iran, Fajer from Prince Mohammad Bin Fahd University, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and SOCRAT from Istanbul University, Turkey.

Japan is home to seven teams, the highest number participating from one country; Tokai from Tokai University, Sky Ace Quad from Ashiya University, NIT Solar Car from Nagoya Institute of Technology, Team Regalia from Osaka Institute of Technology, HIT from Hiroshima Institute of Technology, Lequion from Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology and OSU model S from Osaka Sangyo University.

The US has four teams entering the 2015 challenge; Cal Sol from University of California-Berkeley, Mercury from Illinois State University, OSUVST from Oregon State University and RA 9 from Principia College.  

Two teams will come from Australia; Arrow from Queensland University of Technology and Aurora. An additional three teams will come from Europe: Onda Solare from University of Bologna, Italy, SER from ZHAW School of Engineering, Switzerland and Punch Power Train from KU Leuven, Belgium.

Other teams are expected to confirm their participation in the coming weeks.

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