Grid Scale, Solar

Dell and Winston School Kick Off Solar Car Race

The 2002 Dell-Winston Solar Car Challenge opened July 15 with Texas State Representative Will Hartnett, Indy Racing League driver Greg Ray and other local elected officials on hand at the Dallas City Hall plaza.

Austin, Texas – July 17, 2002 [SolarAccess.com] Representative Hartnett welcomed the teams and their self-made, solar-powered cars and proclaimed July 15 as “Dell-Winston Solar Car Day.” The seventh annual race, taking place July 16-18 at the Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth, provides high school students from across the country and Mexico with hands-on experience in the sciences and advanced technology. “During the next eight years, science and engineering jobs are expected to increase by nearly 50 percent. We need to encourage more young men and woman to enter the sciences to fill these positions,” said Dr. Lehman Marks, event director and founder of the event. “Programs like the Dell-Winston Solar Car Challenge help teach high school students the skills they need to become the scientists and engineers of tomorrow.” Participating in this year’s race are teams from Covina, California; Ridgway, Colorado; Columbus, Indiana; Salina, Kansas; Houston, Mississippi; Newburgh, New York; Texas teams from Dallas and Pampa and two teams from Juarez, Mexico. The students have worked for the last 12-18 months creating their solar cars for the race. Fans with Internet access will be able to see where each car is located on the track as well as the number of completed laps. In addition, solar car teams attend workshops conducted by The Winston School throughout the year leading up to the race and use Dell notebooks to help with the engineering and design of their solar cars. Each year, the Dell-Winston Solar Car Challenge rotates between the Texas Motor Speedway and a cross-country route. During next year’s cross-country race – currently planned to go from Round Rock, Texas, to Orlando, Florida – solar car teams will use Dell notebooks to gauge solar car battery usage, monitor weather patterns and track competitors via global positioning systems. “Dell is proud to help provide these students with the tools needed to compete not only in this week’s event but in the workforce of the future,” said Karen Bruett, director of education and healthcare marketing for Dell. Based in Dallas, The Winston School is focused on realizing the potential of bright children who learn differently through individualized learning strategies and to prepare graduates for college-level work. In 1993, The Winston School launched an education program to provide curriculum materials, on-site visits and workshop opportunities for high schools across the country. The program has taught more than 8,500 students in 22 countries about the wonders of science and demonstrated that high school students can build and race solar cars.