A unique feature of the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge is that it is supported by its own Scientific Faculty, who review, debate and recommend to the Event Organiser appropriate rules, regulations and qualifying processes for the Event.

Under the stewardship of Event Director Chris Selwood AM and the Event Management team at the South Australian Tourism Commission, this unique event continues to push the boundaries and challenge participants.



Emeritus Professor John Storey
Chief Scientist

Qualifications: BSc(hons) in physics, PhD in chemistry

Primary area of interest: Ensuring that the event continues to challenge the smartest minds on the planet to apply innovative solutions to solar car design.

Years on the Faculty: Foundation Member of the Faculty

John competed in the first World Solar Challenge in 1987 as a member of “Team Marsupial”.  He has not missed an event since, acting as a technical scrutineer and, more recently as, an inaugural member of the Scientific Faculty.  Following his 1993 book “Solar Racing Cars” (with Art Schinckel and Chester Kyle), he co-wrote “Speed of Light”, an analysis of the 1996 World Solar Challenge and summary of the state-of the-art in solar car technology.  When not soaking up the Central Australian sunshine, John could sometimes previously be found on the high Antarctic plateau, where he and his colleagues built and operated the world’s only solar powered radioastronomical observatory.

Dr David Rand AM
Chief Energy Scientist

Qualifications: BA, MA, PhD, DSc – University of Cambridge. Fellow of the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering (FTSE). Member of the Order of Australia (AM).

Primary area of interest: Ensuring that the event continues to attract participation and thereby bring comfort to an ageing scientist in the sure knowledge that the quest for a sustainable world is in safe hands.

Years on the Faculty: Foundation Member of the Faculty

David was invited to formulate the battery regulations for the inaugural World Solar Challenge in 1987.  He has served as the Battery Technical Officer, and later as the Chief Energy Scientist, for all events to date.  With the steady improvement in the performance of the various battery chemistries, David’s role is to revise the regulations, from year to year, to reflect those conditions more accurately.  This is a challenge in itself, but one that David relishes.

David is currently an Honorary Research Fellow of CSIRO and also a Battery Science Advisor to the Consortium of Battery Innovation, a global pre-competitve research organisation based in the United Kingdom.

Paul Gwan
Chief Scrutineer

Qualifications: Dip Mech Eng, BSc

Primary area of interest: The overall adherence to the World Solar Challenge regulations from all competing teams.

Years on the Faculty: 13 events

Paul has been involved with the World Solar Challenge since 1996 when he was instrumental in developing the CSIRO in-wheel solar car motor and is the Chief Scrutineer - a key role in confirming that the solar cars entered for the race meet the relevant regulations.

Associate Professor Peter Pudney
Chair of the Regulations Committee

Qualifications: BAppSc (Computer Studies), MAppSc (Computer Studies), PhD (Applied Mathematics)

Primary area of interest: Energy-efficient transport

Years on the Faculty: 5 events

Peter joined the Aurora team in 1993, and was the race manager and strategist for Aurora from 1996 until 2009, except for 2007 when he drove the route with a small green electric car called Trev. He completed his PhD in optimal driving strategies for the solar cars in 2000, and joined the faculty in 2011.

Dr John K Ward
Assistant Chief Scrutineer

Qualifications: PhD & B.Eng (elec)

Primary area of interest: Energy management and strategy optimization - especially how these apply to the challenges facing electricity distribution networks with increasing renewable energy and how this can be mitigated using energy storage and demand management.

Years on the Faculty: 4 Events

John has been a volunteer since the 2005 World Solar Challenge and joined the Scientific Faculty in 2013. For his`day job’ he works for CSIRO Energy, where he leads a research team tackling the challenges of integrating large amounts of intermittent renewable energy into Australia’s electricity networks. As with solar cars, this means carefully balancing generation, loads and energy storage, just on a slightly larger scale. John also contributes to the development of (Australian) standards for PV installation, inverters and demand side management, with a particular focus on EVs.

Dr David Snowdon

Qualifications: BE (Computer Engineering), PhD (Computer Engineering) 

Primary area of interest: Hardware and software systems design, performance optimisation. 

Years on the Faculty: 4 Events

David has been involved with the World Solar Challenge since 1999, first as a team participant with the UNSW Team. He likes to consider the problems posed to the Faculty through the teams' lens. David has a strong philosophical sentiment behind his participation in the World Solar Challenge. He relishes the opportunity the Challenge provides to stimulate the world's best and brightest minds into thinking about how to solve a number of important problems which face the world today. It gets participants excited about ways to do things better than the status quo, introduces them to others who are as excited about fixing those problems, and at the same time, educates and excites the public about those possibilities.

Bart De MoitiÉ

Qualifications: BSc (Electromechanical Engineering), MSc (Electromechanical Engineering)

Primary area of interest: Witnessing the implementation of innovative solutions to the challenges presented to teams while ensuring compliance to the World Solar Challenge regulations.

Years on the Faculty: 2 Events

Bart has been involved with the World Solar Challenge since the 2011 event, where he was the Head of Mechanics for the Umicore Solar Team. After having completed the challenge successfully he decided to "switch sides" and join the next event as a volunteer. In the following events he fulfilled the roles of Observer, Scrutineering Assistant and Competitor Relations Officer. Somewhere in between he joined the 2014 Sasol Solar Challenge in South Africa as the Lead Observer. After the 2017 World Solar Challenge he joined the Scientific Faculty as the youngest and only European member.

Glenn Platt

Qualifications: BSc ElecEng (Hons), PhD (Electrical Engineering)

Primary area of interest: Renewable energy and clean technology.

Glenn Platt is an entrepreneur, technology leader and researcher in the renewable energy and clean technology space. Glenn has spun out several businesses working with solar, batteries and clean technologies, and led the Grids and Energy Efficiency program within CSIRO Energy. Glenn  is an adjunct professor at the University of Technology, Sydney. Prior to CSIRO, Glenn worked in Denmark with Nokia Mobile Phones on the standardisation and application of cutting-edge mobile communications technology. Before his time in Denmark, Glenn was employed in an engineering capacity for various Australian engineering consultancies, working on industrial automation and control projects. Glenn is a Vincent Fairfax Fellow, and a recipient of the Australian Financial Review Young Executive of the Year award.