About The Challenge

The Tasmanian Model Solar Challenge is the state division of the Australian-International Model Solar Challenge, a national competition where finalists from each state and territory compete against one another in the quest to be crowned Australia’s fastest model solar powered car.

The first model solar car event was held in the early 1990’s in Victoria. A group of university professors, teachers and mentors involved in the inaugural World Solar Challenge had found it to be a highly educational experience for their students and felt that a simpler, lower cost version of the event should be created and made accessible to a younger and much greater audience. The model solar challenge was thus formed, with many of the concepts and problems faced by those competing in the World Solar Challenge being preserved.

In order to participate in the model solar challenge students must design, build and race a model car that is powered by nothing more than direct sunlight. Unlike the World Solar Challenge there are no batteries allowed. Racing is conducted on a specially constructed track and cars navigate around this by the use of a guide rail.

New regulations for the challenge are released at the start of each school year and students then given several months to complete their solar cars for racing. The 2018 Tasmanian event is being held on October 20 with finalists then selected to compete at the nationals in late November or early December. 

The Challenge is all about making Science and Engineering fun and aims to foster and enhance student interest in areas of STEM. 

Below are a couple of short promotional video clips produced by the Sustainable Energy Association of Australia for the WA event and by Melbourne’s Swinburne University of Technology for the Victorian Model Solar Challenge. They give a great insight into what the Challenge is all about.

Getting involved in the Tasmanian Model Solar Challenge is easy. The competition is open to any Tasmanian school-aged student up to year 12 and there are no entry fees. Teams can be made up of a single student, a small group or an entire class. Students may even like to undertake the Challenge as a personal project away from school. All that is needed is the motivation to build a model solar powered car. 

Get Started Today!

Simply take the following steps to get your challenge underway today.

Step 1

First things first. Check out the new regulations for 2018. Teams will need to design their solar cars taking these into account. Skip to Section 8 for this year's car specifications.

Step 2

Take a bit of time to browse through some photos from past events. They are often a great place to start and might help give you a few ideas when designing your new car.

Step 3

Head on over to the Challenge Help and Supplies pages on this website for more information on building cars and where to go for parts and materials. Be sure to check for updates as more stuff is being added to these from time to time.

Step 4

Contact the Tasmanian Model Solar Challenge if you have any questions regarding the event, need something in the rules clarified or require any other assistance.

Step 5

Get designing and building today. At home or at school, by yourself or with friends, it doesn't really matter. The simplest cars can take just a few hours to build, more complex ones days, weeks or even months. It's entirely up to you! Just keep in mind that this year's Tasmanian event is being held on October 20th, 2018.

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