Posts Tagged ‘water wind solar’

20 August

Sasol Solar Challenge 2014 of South Africa


Dear Friends, Visitors/Viewers/Readers,

(Please click on red links and note magenta)

Did you know about Sasol Solar Challenge 2014 in South Africa? It will be taking place starting from  Pretoria on September 27, 2014,

Pretoria, South Africa (credit: Google Map)

to Cape Town on October 4, 2014.

Cape Town, South Africa from Table Mountain (CC BY-SA 3.0 Andres de Wet-Own work)

During this eight day period, the challenge will also go through Kroonstad, Bloemfontein, Colesberg, Graaff-Reinet, Port Elizabeth, Knysna, and Swellendam. The main route will span approximately 2000km through the country, covering an average distance of 250km a day. Teams will have the option to expand their daily distance by driving loops varying from 58km up to 132km. Loops can be driven more than once and have to be completed entirely in order to count. Towns that are included by these loops are Sasolburg, Deneysville, Winburg, Senekal, Marqueard, Edenburg, Reddersburg, Hanover, Jansenville, Klipplaat, Stormsrivier, Heidelberg WC, Witsand and Caledon. It is expected that the top teams will reach a total of 6000km, covering at least 700km a day on average. To get a feel for Sasol Solar Challenge 2014, take a look at the video below:

Below is provided by Article on Sasol Solar Challenge (from Annalie Van Vuuren, Project/Event Manager), in italics:

Why SA is suitable for a solar race

An average of 300 days of sunshine per year and a unique South African terrain will put solar technology to the ultimate test. Traveling from the high inland plateau down to the mountainous escarpments and finally to the narrow coastal zone. Founder of the Sasol Solar Challenge Winstone Jordaan had the idea of building an electric car in 2003. After visiting the World Solar Challenge in 2005 he realized that people in South Africa did not possess basic knowledge about electric cars. He was impressed by the 1400 skilled students from all over the world in Australia, and could only imagine how much knowledge South Africa would be able to gain when hosting a solar challenge as well. This knowledge will result in accomplishing the ultimate goal; an improved future for South Africa.

Mission and vision SASC

Our eco-efficiency challenge allows teams from around the world to congregate in South Africa to participate and demonstrate the sophistication and performance of solar-powered vehicles. The underlining mission of the solar challenge is to increase the number of people in South Africa that are interested in the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) subjects. These subjects are crucial to get the country to a higher level.
Next, it will give us a platform where we can exercise our skills in building cars locally. This in turn will result in an increased level of knowledge in the industry about electric motors, battery systems, vehicle aerodynamics and more. Finally, the solar cars will show the public what solar panels can do. If people see solar panels driving a car, you will have a positive sentiment to it. Being more positive to this technology will also make electric vehicles more acceptable to people.

The Sasol Solar Challenge operates under the auspices of the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA) and Motorsport South Africa. The race has four different classes. These classes include the Olympia Class, the Adventure Class, the Cruiser Class and the Sustainability Fleet.


  1. Olympia class is the primary FIA class and the main competitive class for solar-electric vehicles. These cars have to be four wheelers and are not allowed to recharge via plug-in.
  2. Adventure Class is reserved for any other solar-electric vehicles that have been allowed in any previous international solar challenges or other major events, but do not necessarily conform to the Olympia Class regulation. Again, no plug-in recharging is allowed.
  3. Cruiser Class is designed primarily for practicality and can carry two or more occupants. The vehicles in this class are allowed to plug-in recharge overnight.
  4. Sustainability fleet: To provide a forum to further demonstrate advanced technologies in personal transport applications. Many of the participants here are from the formal motor industry. These vehicles are allowed to re-charge midway and overnight.

The main objective of the first race was to run it no matter what. In the past there have been two attempts to run a race in South Africa, however, both got cancelled at the last minute. This resulted in both national and internal teams being reluctant to take part in the event in 2008. Fortunately, we managed to get …. teams competing in the first South African Solar Challenge. Tokai was one of the teams competing in South Africa. Back then they competed with an eleven year-old car they built, with which they were able to win the race. The Japanese team leveraged massively from the victory in South Africa. It enabled them to receive sponsorships and build a new car to compete with in the World Solar Challenge, and ultimately win the Australian race.

The second edition of the solar challenge included a 4 100 km route and five teams competing. The focus of this race was on recognition, compliance and alignment with the FIA. The biggest turning point is in this race that we had the first local university competing in the event. The route stretched from Pretoria down to Cape Town, going back to Pretoria via the southern- and west coast.

The aim of the 2012 event was to get more local teams participating, especially universities. A total of twelve teams competed in the third edition of the South African Solar Challenge. Half the teams competing were local teams.

2014 event

The aim of the 2014 Sasol Solar Challenge is to get more oversees teams competing in the race. The challenge will start in Pretoria on September 27th
through Kroonstad, Bloemfontein, Colesberg, Graaff-Reinet, Port Elizabeth, Knysna and Swellendam. The main route will span approximately 2000km through the country, covering an average distance of 250km a day. Teams will have the option to expand their daily distance, by driving loops varying from 58km up to 132km. Loops can be driven more than once and have to be completed entirely in order to count. Towns that are included by these loops are Sasolburg, Deneysville, Winburg, Senekal, Marqueard, Edenburg, Reddersburg, Hanover, Jansenville, Klipplaat, Stormsrivier, Heidelberg WC, Witsand and Caledon. It is expected that the top teams will reach a total of 6000km, covering at least 700km a day on average.

Education program
Every town the solar challenge passes, a number of schools will get involved through the education program. This education program will entail an education kit which explains how solar-powered vehicles work and material that enables them to build their own solar car. The body of the solar car will be made from recycled material. At the finish of each day, the schools will have a miniature solar car race. Furthermore, we will strongly encourage any school to visit the race, since children are very impressed by the appearance of solar cars. This will give them the opportunity to see what a solar car looks like inside and enable them to interact with the teams that compete in the race.


We are looking forward to the 2014 Sasol Solar Challenge event. South Africa is looking forward to welcome all competitors, officials, volunteers and prospectors to the race. It is still possible for teams to join our competition, the deadline for registration is the ….. Apart from competitors, the solar challenge also needs volunteers on the race, the deadline is … See the links below for the volunteer form if you are interested to join our event.

Links of interest

Official website:

Link to registration and regulation documents:

Twitter: @Solar_Challenge

Facebook: SA Solar Challenge

Instagram: @SASolarChallenge


It will be an amazing race! So come to South Africa and see the beautiful terrain during the Sasol Solar Challenge event!

~have a bright and sunny day~

Gathered, written, and posted by sunisthefuture-Susan Sun Nunamaker

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31 July

Why Should We Power The World With Wind-Water-Sunlight Quickly


If you are in favor of renewable/CLEAN energy, please sign the petition page showing support for FIT/CLEAN Program at Thank you.

It is an exciting time to be alive.  We earthlings may have many problems to deal with, but we are also equipped with many tools, terrific minds, and fantastic ways of communications.  My thirst for solutions for earth’s energy problem combined with my online teaching jobs permitted me to travel to various places from time to time to search for answer…to seek lessons learned and wisdom gathered…. Yes, I’ve attended many lectures by many scholars who have studied the energy issue.

Today, I want to share with you a talk by Mark Z. Jacobson, Director of the Atmosphere/Energy Program and Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Stanford University. Professor Jacobson started the talk by explaining what the problem we earthlings are facing today and why is there such an urgency in needing to deal with it quickly:

  • temperatures are rising quickly
  • Arctic sea ice area is decreasing quickly
  • air pollution mortality is one of the leading causes of death worldwide and higher temperature contributes to deaths
  • higher population and growing energy demand will lead to worsening air pollution and climate problems over time

This part of the talk helped me to realize that black carbon (main component of the soot particles) is also a very important factor for causing global warming, in addition to CO2 emission.  Annual premature earthlings’ deaths due to particulates is about 2.5-3 million (in U.S. that is translated into 50,000-100,000 and in Europe, 300,000-350,000 annual premature deaths due to air pollution).

As any good engineer/scholar would approach a problem, Professor Jacobson did not just  alarm us with problems but also evaluated possible solutions both with and without cost considerations.  From reviewing and ranking major proposed energy-related solutions to global warming, air pollution mortality, and energy security, his talk also considered various impacts of the proposed solutions such as water supply, land use, resource availability, reliability, wildlife, and  risk of cancer and nuclear proliferation.  Some data I was not aware of in the past was presented, such as the dramatic increase of organic gases (formaldehyde, 200% and  acetaldehyde, 4500%) and increased ozone generated from using ethanol.  In the final analysis, with consideration of materials, transmission infrastructure, costs, and politics, Professor Jacobson concludes that the best way to power the world is with Wind, Water, and Solar (WWS) technologies.



By 2030, the cost of using fossil fuel (13.5c/kWh) will be higher than using WWS (8-13 c/kWh) technologies.  Using WWS technologies will also eliminate 2.5-3 million air pollution premature deaths/year and global warming and provides energy stability.  Furthermore, converting to WWS and electricity/H2 will reduce global power demand by 30%.  The greatest concern regarding use of WWS is its variability;this is also addressed by Jacobson’s study by: ( 1.) interconnecting geographically-dispersed WWS;(2.) bundling WWS and using hydro to fill in gaps;(3.) demand-response (provide incentive to discourage use during peak/high demand period);(4.) oversizing peak capacity and producing hydrogen with excess for industry, vehicles;(5.)on-site storage;(6.)better forecasting.



The study concludes that the best way to power planet earth in the future is with Wind, Water, and Solar (WWS) technologies.  It is feasible both technically and economically.  Its potential barriers are up-front costs, transmission needs, lobbying, and politics.

Relevant papers can be found at

Dear Readers, this is exactly why I have written the series on Feed-In-Tariff, trying to urge all of our local and federal governments (not just the Floridians or residents of USA, but residents of planet earth) to give all of us the  incentive to participate  in our move toward the Renewable WWS age.  We, as individual home or business owners, may not be spending multiple millions of dollars for lobbying, but we are just as concerned with the future of energy use and welfare of our planet earth as any large utility companies.  We earthlings are all connected. The particulate matters from China or India or radiation material from Fukushima will impact all of us earthlings.  So as  individual earthlings, let’s start by calling attention and action for our immediate communities.  I, here in Florida, will try my very best in asking my community and local government to consider Feed-In-Tariff (discussions available by going to the search box at right and type in “feed in tariff”). Feed-In-Tariff, now rebranded as CLEAN program, may be utilized by individual home owners, small businesses, organizations such as schools, Y’s, hospitals, libraries, local McDonald’s, WalMart, police stations, and large power/utility companies/plant (refer to the piece I wrote on July 13, 2011, Answer For The Future Is In Hybrid Marriage-Solar And Fossil Fuel at alike. I hope you, readers from 85 countries (esp. for those who resides in countries not yet with Feed-In-Tariff), will do the same.  I will try to find a way to set up a petition page within few days.  Please feel free to email me at if you have any suggestions.  Any of your input will be welcomed.

Posted by sunisthefuture-Susan Sun Nunamaker,



BIO  for Mark Z. Jacobson (taken from Stanford University web site for energy seminar:

Professor/Director Jacobson currently sits on the U.S. Department of Energy Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) Federal Advisory Committee (ERAC) to the U.S. Secretary of Energy.  He received a B.S. in Civil Engineering with distinction, an A.B. in Economics with distinction, and an M.S. in Environmental Engineering from Stanford University, in 1988, an M.S. in Atmospheric Sciences in 1991 and a PhD in Atmospheric Sciences in 1994 from UCLA and has been on the faculty at Stanford since 1994.  His work relates to the development and application of numerical models to understand better the effects of energy systems and vehicles on climate and air pollution and the analysis of renewable energy resources. He has published two textbooks and 110 peer-reviewed scientific journal articles. His 2000 finding that black carbon, the main component of soot particles, may be the second-leading cause of global warming after carbon dioxide provided the original scientific basis for five recent U.S. proposed laws on black carbon. He received the 2005 American Meteorological Society Henry G. Houghton Award for “significant contributions to modeling aerosol chemistry and to understanding the role of soot and other carbon particles on climate.” In 2005, his group developed the first wind map of the world from data at the height of modern turbines. He recently co-authored a cover article in Scientific American with Dr. Mark DeLucchi of U.C. Davis and two more detailed analyses in Energy Policy on how to power the world with renewable energy.

Posted by sunisthefuture-Susan Sun Nunamaker,

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