Skip to main content

Winners for NREL’s 25th Solar and Lithium Ion Car Races

May 16, 2015

Sixty-three teams from 17 Colorado middle schools gathered at Dakota Ridge High School in Littleton today for the 25th Annual Junior Solar Sprint and Lithium Ion Battery car competitions. The day's event drew nearly 200 students eager to show and race the solar- and lithium ion-battery powered vehicles they designed and built. The trophy for fastest solar powered model car was given to students from Stargate School (Thornton), "SG Solar 2." The trophy for fastest lithium-ion powered model car was given to students from Bell Middle School (Golden), "BMS 2 Battery."

"It's really a game of can you get the best design and you can get the fastest car?" said Jack Cooper, a sixth-grader from Stargate racing a solar-powered car. "It's difficult to have both."

Each year, the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and other local sponsors host the races to show middle-school students that science, engineering, and design can be rewarding and to encourage them toward careers in STEM - science, technology, engineering, and math. The batteries used in the competition are supplied by DOE, and teams purchase authorized solar panels, then design and build the rest of their cars themselves. The competition showcases solar and lithium ion battery power technologies, both important scientific research focuses for NREL and DOE.

Trophies for the fastest solar powered model cars were given to students from Stargate School (Thornton), "SG Solar 2," first place; Ken Caryl Middle School (Littleton), "Banish the Moon," second place; and Arma Dei Academy (Littleton), Revolutionerz, third place.

Three solar design trophies based on technology, craftsmanship and innovation were given to teams The Logan School (Denver), "The E.-J.A.M.," first place; Ken Caryl Middle School (Littleton), "Banish the Moon," second place; and Southern Hills Middle School (Boulder), "Mad-a-gas Kar," third place.

Trophies for the fastest lithium-ion powered model cars were given to Colorado students from Bell Middle School (Golden), "BMS 2 Battery," first place; University Schools (Greeley), "US Battery 2," second place; and Southern Hills Middle School (Boulder), "Zoomroonies," third place.

Three lithium-ion design trophies based on technology, craftsmanship and innovation were given to teams from Ken Caryl Middle School (Littleton), "Starship Enterprise," first place; Skinner Middle School (Denver), "Purple Chickens," second place; and Southern Hills Middle School (Boulder), "Zoomroonies," third place.

The "Starchasers" team from Stargate School (Thornton) was awarded the Spirit Award for exhibiting good sportsmanship, including fairness and respectful behavior. The team competed in the solar category.

The annual competition is also sponsored by DOE's Office of Science, the Alliance for Sustainable Energy, Jefferson County Schools, and Dakota Ridge High School.

For more information on today's races visit the NREL Education web site.

Editors: High-resolution photographs of the competition are available by contacting  Wayne Hicks with NREL Public Affairs.

NREL is the U.S. Department of Energy's primary national laboratory for renewable energy and energy efficiency research and development. NREL is operated for the Energy Department by The Alliance for Sustainable Energy, LLC.

###



Visit NREL online at www.nrel.gov

—Wayne Hicks