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ASC/FSGP 2014 Wrap Up

Thanks to all the teams, sponsors, observers, and event staff that made this summer’s collegiate level American Solar Challenge (ASC) and Formula Sun Grand Prix (FSGP) solar car racing possible. 20 teams showed up to this event with a car, including a number of international and first-year teams. This is a higher number of participants than in recent years, which is promising for the future of solar car racing in America. See here for the full race results and more event information.

Of the 20 teams that showed up, 17 of them were eventually able to pass the rigorous Scrutineering inspections and get onto the Circuit of The Americas (COTA) track for the FSGP qualifier race powered by Austin Energy. The track event proved particularly challenging this year due to heavy cloud cover, the steep hill up to turn one, and a battery fire that delayed the final day of racing. For the second year in a row, Iowa State set the fast lap around the COTA track and this year was slightly faster than last with an average speed of 44.8mph. Congratulations to the following teams who ranked in the top three positions based on total number of official laps over the 3 day FSGP qualifier race.

FSGP 2014 Top 3 Positions

  • 1st: University of Michigan – 174 laps (596 mi)
  • 2nd: Oregon State – 124 laps (425 mi)
  • 3rd: University of Minnesota & Western Michigan University Tie – 110 laps (377 mi)

Only 4 registered teams met the official lap qualification requirements for ASC, including the University of Michigan, Oregon State, Iowa State, and QIAU HAVIN from Iran. 6 other teams were granted provisional qualification such that 10 teams were allowed to start the American Solar Challenge. One of these teams chose to withdraw before the start of the cross-country ASC start line. Another team was not able to meet their provisional qualification requirement and had to withdraw before the start of the 3rd day. This left us with just 8 teams finishing the 1700+ mile race from Austin, TX to Minneapolis, MN.  These 8 teams clearly demonstrated that their solar vehicles are capable of traveling long distances across varied road, traffic, and weather conditions. The top 6 teams completed the full event on solar energy without ever having to trailer their vehicle. This was no simple feat given the number of cloudy days. The University of Michigan soared to its 5th consecutive victory in the American Solar Challenge. They also were the first team to arrive at every checkpoint and stage stop throughout the race! Congratulations to the top thee ASC teams.

ASC 2014 Top 3 Positions

  • 1st: University of Michigan – 41:27:29 (hh:mm:ss elapsed)
  • 2nd: University of Minnesota – 45:19:09 (hh:mm:ss elapsed)
  • 3rd: Iowa State University – 50:18:46 (hh:mm:ss elapsed)

Photos from the event can be viewed on Flickr at the links below.

ASC/FSGP 2014 Event Information

This summer’s collegiate level solar car racing is taking place from Jul 14-28. Here are some important links to help you stay up to date with the 2014 event. We will do our best to keep the website regularly updated throughout the event but if you are looking for up to the minute stats and information, our social media feeds will be a better bet. If you are primarily interested in following a particular team, we suggest that you check out their website and social media feeds for more information. Some teams will have webcams and GPS tracking setup.

  • Team Status Board: This page tracks team’s administrative documents, vehicle design reports, and Scrutineering status. The goal here is simple: achieve all greens!
  • Team Rankings, Event Maps, Scheduling, & Information: This page features lots of information about both the FSGP and ASC racing events including official team rankings, schedules, and maps. There are portions of both events that are open to the public. If you get the chance, be sure to come out and see the cars up close and in person.
  • Twitter: This will likely be our most frequently updated feed with the latest tidbits of information about the event as it happens.
  • Facebook: Here you’ll find periodic updates, photos, and possibly some videos throughout each day.
  • Flickr: If you’re looking for photos from this event this is the place to find them. We’ll do our best to upload some new photos each day with more pictures to come from multiple sources after the event wraps up.

Mathworks Solar Car Workshop

Mathworks, one of our longtime event sponsors, is going to have a representative on site at COTA Wednesday, July 16 to host a solar car modeling workshop. This will take place at Event Center A from 1:00-2:30PM during the last day of Scrutineering. We strongly encourage you to send at least one or two team members to learn about the powers of Matlab Simulink software for design, analysis, and optimization of solar cars. You can find more information about the workshop at the following link Mathworks 2014 Solar Car Workshop.

Updated ASC 2014 Regs Posted

Revision C of the ASC 2014 Regulations have been posted. The updates pertain to ASC and FSGP 2014 operations as well as some changes to the penalties. Teams should be sure to read over the revised regulations before the race. This will give you a fresh understanding of race operations and vehicle requirements so you will be better prepared for the event. With the event starting in about a week we are getting very excited to see you all in Texas for Scrutineering soon.

ASC/FSGP 2014 Event Program

The event program for ASC and FSGP 2014 has now been released on our website. Enjoy.

ASC/FSGP 2014 Team Data Sheets

23 teams from around the world are registered to participate in ASC/FSGP 2014. Some are long time condensers and others are brand new to the event. Checkout the team data sheets to get to them all a little better.  The start of the event is just over 1 month away now. Best of luck to all the teams with finishing building and testing their cars.

Austin Energy Sponsors FSGP 2014

We would like to announce that Formula Sun Grand Prix 2014 is Powered by Austin Energy. We extend a warm welcome to Austin Energy as our newest event sponsor. They are the nation’s 8th largest publicly owned electric utility. They serve more than 420,000 customers and over 1 million residents with a mission to deliver clean, affordable, reliable energy and excellent customer service.

ASC 2014 Finish Line

We’re pleased to announce that the ASC 2014 finish line will be in Minneapolis at the University of Minnesota on Monday, July 28th. The awards ceremony dinner will also be held on campus that evening. With the start of the event just over 1 month away, we hope you’re all getting as excited as we are about Solaring up the Midwest this summer.

2014 Scrutinering & FSGP Schedule

We’ve released the initial version of schedule for the Circuit of the Americas scrutineering and FSGP qualifier race. It is available at the ASC/FSGP 2014 page or can be downloaded directly here.

ASC 2014 Starting at UT Austin

We can now confirm that the 2014 American Solar Challenge (ASC) will be starting at the University of Texas at Austin. The Cockrell School of Engineering will be hosting the starting line on Monday, July 21st. In order for solar car teams to participate in ASC, they must first successfully complete the Formula Sun Grand Prix qualifying race July 17-19 at the Circuit of the Americas. On July 20th teams will have a day off or racing to focus on prepping their cars for the cross country race and displaying their cars to the public at UT Austin. If you are interested in getting to meet the teams and learn about the cars, Sunday July 20th will be a great opportunity to do this. We hope to see you at UT Austin this summer as teams gear up for the start of their long journey to Minneapolis.