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Dutch solar car sets record pace

24 Oct 2003

Nuna II has won the World Solar Challenge in record time, living up to all expectations.

As widely expected, Nuna II, the solar-powered car built by the Dutch Nuon Solar Team, has won the World Solar Challenge in a record time. The car completed the 3010 km course across Australia in 30 hours 54 minutes, knocking 1 hour 45 minutes off its 2001 winning time.

Nuna II also managed to average a record-breaking speed of 97 km/h throughout the race, bettering its 2001 average of 91.8 km/h. It’s top speed during the race was 110 km/h.

The Dutch team’s closest rival was an Australian entry called Aurora, which crossed the finishing line just 1 hour and 43 minutes after Nuna II. The Aurora team said it was delighted with its performance as it finished inside Nuna’s 2001 winning time for the event. Aurora’s average speed was 91.89 km/h.

In hot pursuit of Aurora throughout the race was a car called Tesseract, developed by Massachusetts Institute of Technology, US. Finishing in third place overall, Tesseract recorded an average speed of 91.19 km/h.

The event officially draws to a close on October 28, when the slowest cars are expected to complete the challenge.

Jacqueline Hewett is news reporter on Optics.org and Opto & Laser Europe magazine.

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