New dates, rules for 2025 Bridgestone World Solar Challenge

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The biennial solar car race from Darwin to Adelaide will take place at the end of the Australian winter, from 24 August to 31 August 2025, rather than the traditional mid-October timeslot. “It means the sun will be lower in the sky, rising later, and setting earlier,” said Bridgestone World Solar Challenge ambassador and faculty member, Chris Selwood.

“With daily solar irradiation 20% lower than in October, the 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.”

The seasonal change is just one constraint set to challenge the participants in the next edition of the race. New regulations for both the single-seater Challenger Class and the two-seater Cruiser Class, are coming soon.

So far, the organisers have said that the Cruiser Class will allow overnight recharging. Both Cruiser and Challenger groups will compete in a single stage.

Changes for the Challenger Class include increased capacity to collect energy, but a reduction in the amount of allowed storage capacity. Specifically, it will be allowed a maximum on-board stored energy of 11 MJ, and an allowable solar cell area is 4m2 to 6m2.

The teams will have to practice “strategic” energy management, which “aligns with the kinds of challenges facing everyday providers who juggle supply and demand gaps between power availability versus power use,” according to the organisers.

More details about the emerging Explorer Class and full regulations, program highlights, and team registration details will be announced on World Environment Day on June 5.

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