The Tshwane University of Technology (TUT) has unveiled its solar car, the SunChaser 3, which will compete in the Sasol Solar Challenge 10-year anniversary race.

The seven-day race will kick-start on 22 September in Pretoria, at Menlyn Maine Time Square, and run until 29 September, when it will end in Stellenbosch.

Sponsored by RS Components and armed with experience gained in previous races, the team is determined to reduce the gap between them and the world’s leading teams this year.

In an interview with eTUTor, team leader Johannes de Vries said the team manufactured most of its mechanical components at the institution.

“This year is definitely different, because of the more demanding regulations in terms of the solar panel size reduction. There is more focus on reducing the weight of the car since there is less energy available to move the car. It will be smaller in size and more aerodynamic compared to the previous car,” he said.

“We also experienced that the more we work on the design we gain better clarity and understanding of how to improve the design. I am confident that we are well resourced for this year’s race, and believe that we can best challenge the other teams.”

RS sponsored various components and tools to help construct SunChaser 3 and get it on the road.

“We’re extremely proud of the calibre of the engineers and technicians that are being developed in South Africa,” says Brian Andrew, MD of RS Components in sub-Saharan Africa. “Our role is to give them access to the tools, components and resources they require to design, build and maintain the innovations of tomorrow.

“We wish the TUT team all the best as they compete in the Sasol Solar Car 2018 Challenge.”