Solar Car Challenge

The Year 8 students of North Albany Senior High School, were lucky enough to get involved in the 2020 Synergy Solar Car Challenge in term one. In doing so, students learned first-hand about the power and benefits of renewable energy, specifically solar energy

    

Classes took turns to work together to build and race miniature solar-powered cars. Over the course of 3 weeks, through many hours of building, adjusting and racing, 3 teams were selected to attend the Synergy Solar Challenge and race their cars against a multitude of other year 8 students from around the Great Southern.

Students Hayley Shanks, Thornton Hambley, Jayden Hathway, Finlay Robertson, Liam Versluis, Connor Davies and Mitchel Cooney made up the 3 wonder-teams. This year North Albany Senior High School was lucky enough to be chosen to host the competition.

Thursday, the 12th of March, began as a sunny and bright day here in the town of Albany. Hopes were high and adrenaline levels were pumping as the clock began and teams were given 1 hour to construct their cars from a collection of materials.

NASHS student teams were quick to complete their builds and took to the tracks to test and refine their cars. Unfortunately, as it does so often in this beautiful town, the clouds began to merge and the rain started to bucket down. Unlike the grass outside, however, the hopes of our racers were not dampened because we were able to add battery packs to our cars in the case of bad weather and race inside the protection of the school gymnasium. The races could still go on.

With students cheering triumphantly, and engines purring silently, the races began in a knockout round style. Of the three NASHS teams, one was bumped out of the competition in the qualifying finals and another bumped out in the preliminary finals. One NASHS team made it all the way to the Grand Final and placed 4th overall. 

What a fantastic first year for NASHS in the Synergy Solar Car Challenge. The feedback from all students involved has been overwhelmingly positive and everyone is looking forward to building and racing again in 2021. Many stated that it was “a wonderful and interesting way to learn about the great potential for renewable energy!”

Well done NASHS students! You have made the staff, school and community proud with your great efforts.

Zac McGill
Science Teacher