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Perfect Timing to Accelerate Towards Green Energy

Perfect Timing to Accelerate Towards Green Energy

07 May 2024

Perfect Timing to Accelerate Towards Green Energy

Announcing the most significant step-change since the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge’s (BWSC) inception in 1987, BWSC Ambassador, Chris Selwood AM, said the 2025 Challenge will shift from its traditional mid-October timeslot, to 24 - 31 August, the end of the Australian winter!

‘They say timing is everything and since 1987, competitors have crossed Australia at one of the sunniest times of the year. At the end of August, the sun will be lower in the sky, rising later, and setting earlier. Daily solar irradiation is around 20% lower than in October and teams will need an even greater focus on energy efficiency, because the world’s energy needs don’t stop when the sun isn’t shining,’ Chris said.

‘Competing in this unique 3,000-kilometre adventure even when the sun is not directly overhead is just one of the regulation shifts set to challenge the field to drive decarbonisation through sustainable mobility,’ he said.

‘As the world faces the global challenge of eliminating our carbon footprint, the Scientific Faculty recognises the role the world’s greatest innovation and engineering challenge has in exploring green technology, energy efficiency, and mobility possibilities. New regulations to encourage these ‘what ifs’ and raise the sustainability bar even higher, focus on enabling the world’s brightest competitors to consider an even greater range of renewable energy solutions.
‘The new look 2025 BWSC will include new regulations for both the Challenger and Cruiser Classes.

‘The Challenger Class, which has captured the imagination of teams around the world for decades, will have increased capacity to collect energy with the trade-off being a reduction in storage capacity. This change encourages strategic energy management aligning with real-world challenges facing everyday providers who juggle supply and demand gaps between power availability versus power use. By reducing the amount of energy storage allowed in cars, the 2025 BWSC will challenge teams to develop systems for managing the car’s energy use to match the available sunlight, without compromising performance.

‘The Cruiser Class which saw teams fail to finish in 2023, is also set for a shakeup. The Cruiser competition was created to encourage ‘green to the mainstream’ concept cars kitted out with innovative, sustainable, and potentially practical features that could find their way into real-world design. In 2025, Cruiser Class design judging will include incentives for sustainable, marketable, smart design features. Cruisers will compete in a single stage, with the winner taking line honours in Adelaide. Cars will carry two occupants and overnight recharging will be more flexible, forming a key part of team strategy.

‘The South Australian Government recognises the challenging road to decarbonisation involves a range of integrated pathways and solutions including battery electrification, solar, wind, synthetic fuels, and green hydrogen. Ahead of the 40th Anniversary of the event in 2027, Expressions of Interest will be welcomed in 2025 for a new future-focused, demonstration category. The Explorer Class will give the BWSC an even broader platform to showcase prospective ideas, technology, and renewables and further expand the BWSC’s visionary quest for harnessing renewable energy sources by championing people that can solve problems. With its vast, global talent pool of inventive, change-making competitors, event alumni, industry and government stakeholders, the Challenge is in pole position to explore and road-test solutions and collaborative opportunities to drive a sustainable future.

‘To further encourage alignment with industry needs, skills pathways, and to support the journey to more sustainable mobility through decarbonisation, global forums and roundtables will continue to be a focus of the event program highlighting the BWSC as a unique stage to connect and engage industry and attract future talent to our shores.

‘The full regulations, program highlights, and team registration details will be announced on World Environment Day, June 5,’ Chris concluded.