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Faculty members

Faculty members

A unique aspect of the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge is that the event maintains a faculty of technical experts and alumni who have been drawn together as an 'advisory board' to help develop regulations and procedures which challenge the status quo of accepted wisdom and encourage new ideas.  While faculty members demonstrate a great deal of expertise and passion for their own scientific discipline, they are able apply their skills to the concept of solar car competition in general and the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge in particular.  

Faculty members can be found helping to resolve intricate technical questions in the scrutineering hall and advising Officials on issues of compliance along the route. Although the Faculty was only formalised in the last decade, for some members,  involvement in the World Solar Challenge go back to the very first event in 1987.  With both highly regarded academic and scientific credentials and long standing experience of the event, faculty members have a great deal of admiration for each other as demonstrated by respectful debate of the diverse opinions which often emerge when breaking new ground.  


Chris Selwood AM - BWSC Ambassador

Qualifications: Electrical Engineering

Primary area of interest: Passion for this planet and his unflagging interest in alternative energy and sustainable transport

Years on the Faculty:  6 Events (foundation member of faculty)


Bridgestone World Solar Challenge Event Ambassador, Chris Selwood AM, is an electrical engineer by training, but he has never been one to follow a conventional path. Born in the UK, he spent much of his early working life as a production manager for movies, and later in event management, travelling the world.

He fell in love with the Australian bush and in 1991 chose to call South Australia home. He went on to manage the logistics and operations of some of Australia’s most notable outdoor, adventure events. Chris’s journey to the World Solar Challenge came about through his passion for this planet and his unflagging interest in alternative energy and sustainable transport. Chris has a more than 30 year history with the event, which he began in 1993 as a volunteer - fast forward nine years and he was running the event. Though this year he is passing the operational baton to others, he continues as Ambassador and official spokesperson, sharing his knowledge, experience, and passion with the next generation.


Emeritus Professor John Storey - Chief ScientistJStorey

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: 6 Events (foundation member of 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 first as a technical scrutineer and, more recently as, an inaugural member of the Scientific Faculty. Following his 1993 book “Solar Racing Cars” (with Ant Schinckel and Chester Kyle), he co-wrote “Speed of Light”, an analysis of the 1996 WSC and summary of the then state-of the-art in solar car technology.

John’s background includes a PhD in chemistry and over 30 years as professor of physics. His research interests have included the development of astronomical instrumentation and kilowatt-scale autonomous power systems for remote Antarctic stations and field camps. He lives on an isolated rural property near Canberra, completely off grid, and drives an EV – also charged from solar panels.

For John the highlight of every event is meeting and talking with the brilliant young students in each team. It gives him hope that maybe the planet does have a future, after all.

Dr David Rand AM – Chief Energy ScientistDRand

Qualifications: BA, MA, PhD, DSc – all from the 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: 6 Events (foundation member of 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.  The innovations on display in the World Solar Challenge are at the heart of all electric vehicles, whether they be powered by batteries alone or by hybrid engines.  This is why the particular emphasis that the World Solar Challenge places on setting technical regulations that always enable teams to use cutting-edge batteries in real-life operating conditions is so important.  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.  There is strong evidence that the battery lessons learnt from the World Solar Challenge have contributed to the automotive industry’s efforts to reduce its carbon footprint through progressive electrification of road vehicles.

Paul Gwan PGwan

Qualifications: Dip Mech Eng, BSc

Primary area of interest: The overall adherence to the World Solar Challenge regulations and the enjoyment of participating with teams from all around the world. 

Years on the Faculty: 6 Events (foundation member of faculty) 


Paul has been involved with the World Solar Challenge since 1996 when he was instrumental in developing the CSIRO in-wheel solar car motor. What is most exciting is that now a large contingent of contestants are using the 98% super-efficient motor. Paul held the position of Chief Scrutineer through to and including the 2019 Bridgestone World Solar Challenge, with his role being to confirm that the solar cars that had entered the challenge met the relevant regulations.

Prof. Peter Pudney - Chair of the Technical Committee  PPudney

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

Primary area of interest: Energy-efficient transport

Years on the Faculty: 6 Events (foundation member of faculty)


Peter first became involved in the World Solar Challenge in 1993, when he was asked by the Aurora Vehicles Association to help them determine the best way to manage their energy system. He joined the team for the 1993 event, and was hooked. From 1996 until 2009 he was the race manager and strategist for Aurora, except for 2007 when he drove the route with a small green electric car called Trev. He completed his PhD, "Optimal energy management for solar-powered cars", in 2000. He also helped design and build cars with Aurora and with the South Australian Solar Car Consortium. In 2011 Peter was asked to be a Judge for the Event, and since then he has chaired the Technical Faculty.

Dr John K Ward - Chief Scrutineer Jward

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: 6 Events (foundation member of faculty)


John has been a volunteer since the 2005 World Solar Challenge. For his `day job’ he works for CSIRO Energy Technology, 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. He brings this experience to the technical faculty and scrutineering process.

Dr David Snowdon - Cruiser Class ManagerDSnowden

Qualifications: Bachelor of Engineering (BE) (Computer Engineering), Hons class 1. Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

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

Years on the Faculty: 6 Events (foundation member of faculty)


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 - Assistant Chief ScrutineerPhoto bart (1)

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: 3 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 Bridgestone World Solar Challenge he joined the Scientific Faculty as the youngest and only European member.

“I love seeing the teams come up with innovative solutions to the various challenges we present to them every event. We do not make it easy, but they rise to the challenge and it great to see.”

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

Primary area of interest:  Renewable energy and clean technology.

Years on the Faculty: 3 Events 


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.

Dr Kirsty Veale 


Senior engineering fellow at CERN - Large Hadron Collider project) (Geneva) 

Years on the Faculty: 2 Events


Solar racing has been a big part of Kirsty's life since 2011, when they started competing locally, in South Africa, and then in Australia. Aiming to produce something technologically advanced in this unique environment is a thrill that cannot easily be matched. Kirsty chose to join the faculty because they were bitten by the solar bug and love the technology, team spirit, and adventure.

Now, Kirsty will be part of the other side, moving from competitor to faculty. Setting regulations to challenge the new generation of competitors and available technology while also ensuring everyone is safe. Kirsty's area of focus is vehicle mechanics and simulation. This year, the excitement for Kirsty is to be part of another race and to see how the teams address some of the new regulations while still ensuring they have a competitive edge.


Dr Fiona Leverone

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Specialist engineer designing solar thermal rocket propulsion systems at Dawn Aerospace (Netherlands)

Years on the Faculty: 2 Events



Dr Fiona's area of focus is renewable energy systems and simulation. They are excited to see the teams work together to overcome the technical challenges of the race while being able to share this unique competition. 

The interest to be involved in the WSC is to be able to give back to the WSC community. Fiona feels privileged to contribute to advancing the competition from a technical point of view and being able to see the innovations and technology advancements that the teams can achieve around these constraints.