The Vattenfall Solar Team has broken the world endurance record for solar racing on Saturday. The students from Delft managed to cover a distance of more than 924 kilometers within twelve hours. That is 42 kilometers more than the record set in June 2017.
The solar car Nuna Phoenix drove a total of 328 laps on the RDW site in Lelystad. The world record attempt started at 07:00.
Because it can get 50 degrees in the cabin, a new driver took place every three hours. Due to the heat on Saturday, the solar panels were slightly cooled by the other team members during the switches by spraying them with water.
“A new world endurance record, while a few weeks ago we did not know whether the car would ever race again”, says team captain Niek Hogenboom. “We did this well. I am proud of our team.”
Nuna Phoenix built for racing in United States
Actually, the Nuna Phoenix was built for an international race in the United States, but it was canceled due to the corona crisis. This was a big disappointment for the students, as they hoped for revenge after a failed race in Australia last year.
At the time, the team was on its way to win the solar racing world title for the eighth time, but lost the lead a few hours before the finish as the car caught fire and then completely burned down. That is why a new car had to be built in eight months. The preparations normally take one year.
Due to the corona crisis, the students faced more setbacks. The 1.5 meter measure made building the Nuna Phoenix more difficult and an important sponsor withdrew. In order not to let the car get dusty, the students decided to go for a world record.