The static scrutineering in advance of the World Solar Challenge (WSC) are a struggle to the race. The static scrutineering” started on Oct 2nd with two cars and continued with 14 teams a day until Thursday.
The scrutineering is not intended to be a selection, but a presentation to qualify. “We expect every car to comply. If there are questions, it is up to the team to persuade the engineers” director Chris Selwood points out.
The first car to receive a “Go” was Violet vom Team Sunswift. Very well done, since the Team had to cancel the unveiling two weeks ago, do to an accident. Today the first German car, the Sonnenwagen qualified for dynamic scrutineering on Saturday. The blue.cruiser is on a good way. Other teams struggle to present their car in time. During test driving in Australia experience was gained, but also unexpected problems popped up. Bochums blue.cruiser arrived with delay in Darwin because test driving in Cober Pedy showed serious problems at the rear chassis.
Challenges and Disappointments
Non of the teams will discuss their problems in the public. The CUER Team from Cambridge seems to have bad luck: After they had to cancel the race last time, this time an accident ended all their dreams. The driver could leave the hospital, but the solar car can not be repaired in a few days. The MDH team is under pressure, because their battery has not arrived yet. Now the team plans to build a complete a new battery to keep the doors open to participate. The cars of the teams from Tehran and Mississippi have not been spotted at the static scrutineering. The organizing team as well as the participant put all their effort in preparation work for the race. The want everybody to start. The competitors help each other with advice, tools, parts as longs as there is still hope to get the car to the starting line on time.
To organize the static scrutineering efficiently the solar cars are send through a production line in the main hall of the Darwin Convention Center. Experts wait at each station to check compliance with the rules. They measure size, check lights and brakes, look precisely at all safty matters and seal the batteries. If they comply, the get a green dot until every concern is solved. The next step to the starting line will be dynamic scrutineering on Saturday at Hidden Vally racetrack.
Media presence is welcome in the outback. With the arrival of the teams in Darwin public interest is growing. The main sponsor of the event and also many participating teams have their own media car. They produce their own daily video clips. It is a lot of fun to take time to watch them. You will find a lot of lovely details that make the WSC a very special event. On my teamlist you’ll find links to all social media scources. A Dutch broadcasting station reports from Sunday a daily update from the race. Bochum announced to produce a dokumentary film from the race. They will present it 2018 in a movie theater in Bochum.