Bay to welcome solar race cars

2018-09-26 06:01
Some of the e-Bikes to be displayed at Aldo Scribante Expo as part of the Sasol Solar Challenge Fun Zone today.Photo:SUPPLIED

Some of the e-Bikes to be displayed at Aldo Scribante Expo as part of the Sasol Solar Challenge Fun Zone today.Photo:SUPPLIED

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THE Mandela Bay Development Agency (MBDA), the Technology Innovation Agency and the uYilo eMobility programme based at the Nelson Mandela University will be hosting an interactive display of solar technology which is powering the next generation of transportation trends.

The expo, also dubbed the Fun Zone, is being hosted today, September 26, at Aldo Scribante as part and parcel of the activities to welcome the 15-team strong international Sasol Solar Challenge race expected from 15:00.

Residents and learners are encouraged to be part of the action as these impressive solar-powered electric vehicles make their way to Nelson Mandela Bay in a race for top honours against time. Growing from a mostly local event with only one professional competitor, this year the sixth Sasol Solar Challenge will be the biggest in its 10-year history.

Approximately 15 international teams, including 2016 Dutch title defenders Delft University, will join local teams to compete for the 2018 title.

The Sasol Solar Challenge is a biennial competition. Teams from across the world design and build solar-powered electric vehicles to drive across South Africa in an eight-day event.

This year the competing international teams are expected to travel distances between 2 500km and 5 000km.

“The 2018 event, which started on September 22 and will continue until September 30, traverses some of the world’s most beautiful and diverse landscapes, from savannah and mountains to coastal forest,” said Luvuyo Bangazi, MBDA spokesperson.

The teams will be in Nelson Mandela Bay today with Aldo Scribante Circuit as the finish line before they head out tomorrow, September 27, towards the Western Cape.

The race village and Fun Zone will open at 13:00 with several exhibitions on display, including the fun and popular Segway tours experience, which is usually seen at the beachfront.

The MBDA operated Uitenhage-based Science and Technology Centre will be on site to engage with learners.

In addition, the agency is in the process of converting its two tuk tuks into solar powered units ready to hit the streets in January 2019.

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