Solar cars reach the finish line

May 11, 2014

Thankfully the sun was shining brightly at the 18th Texas Solar Race Car Event held Saturday, May 10 at Gustafson Stadium.

Two hundred and fifty two teams competed from 60 Northside elementary schools.  After preliminary heats, quarterfinals, semifinals, and a final race, awards were handed out to the top eight teams.

Congratulations to the winning teams of 2014-

8th place: McAndrew Speed Demons
7th: Linton JANE
6th: Behlau Gummi Bears
5th: Forester The A Team
4th: Cable Super Cubs
3rd: Cable Turbo Cubs
2nd: Cable Lovelies
1st: Braun Station Red Flash

Northside School Board President Bobby Blount is the long-time organizer of the event which started as a mentorship project at Rayburn Middle School to give students hands-on lessons in teamwork, renewable energy, problem-solving, and science and engineering. The races are a culminating event for students who have been working for weeks designing and building miniature solar-powered cars.  

“I love seeing the students’ excitement as they compete,” says Blount. “This is a real-life problem for teams to solve and it’s important that students see science and math as fun. These races help do just that.”

Solar cars is an afterschool science program for fourth and fifth grade students. They are provided a solar panel, gear box, and axle rods but the rest of the car design is up to them. In addition to learning about teamwork, students are also developing their engineering skills through the design and testing process.

Sponsors for this year’s event are Northside Elementary Science Department, the Northside Education Foundation, the MITRE Corporation, the National Defense Education Program and Cryptologic Systems Division.

Visit the Northside ISD Facebook page for an album of race day pictures.