Wind Tunnel

Wind Tunnel Testing

On June 8th, part of our team traveled to Ottawa to visit the National Research Council in order to conduct aerodynamic characterization tests in their air tunnel facilities. Here are some of the experiences of the NRC visit that members of the Blue Sky team have shared:

 

“Our visit to the NRC presented me with an opportunity to work with industry professionals and put into practice the things I learn in the classroom. I found it quite humbling to know that the engineering feats around me utilize the same technology, from conceptualizing the idea to testing a prototype all the way to solving a very real problem. It makes me realize the room for my own technical growth and the possibilities ahead. It was quite a learning experience to work with the NRC, nonetheless I look forward to working with them again and await what new insights the data from the wind tunnel test brings us.”

– Nasa Nguyen, Industrial Engineering 1T9

“The NRC wind tunnel literally blew my mind. The people were great, so knowledgeable and helpful, and the wind tunnel was equally as impressive. For me, not only was this an opportunity to learn more about aerodynamics, but also to have a great time with my Blue Sky team. One of the best moments at the wind tunnel was seeing Eugene, our aerodynamic lead, holding the smoke wand in front of our car. There’s nothing like seeing Eugene get to do what he’s always wanted to, and that’s all thanks to the NRC.”

– Mackenzie Clark, Engineering Science 1T9

“On behalf of Blue Sky Solar Racing, we want to thank NRC for providing us with the opportunity for us to conduct aerodynamic characterization tests in your air tunnel facilities. This has given us important information about our 8th generation solar car – Horizon as well as important knowledge for the design of our next solar car. The NRC visit was a great experience for the Blue Sky members to gain this knowledge from wind tunnel testing and NRC’s professionals. ”

-Natasha Valenton, Mechanical Engineering 1T9

Wind Tunnel - Group

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Yorkville Exotic Car Show

 

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On Father’s Day, June 19th we were very fortunate to have the opportunity to display Horizon at the annual Yorkville Exotic Car Show. A number of our team members attended the event to share our experience with a lot of interested show-goers and car enthusiasts about our vehicle.

We are very grateful to the organizers who gave us the opportunity to participate in the event, and we hope to return next year!

Ben Mucsi, Engineering Science 1T9″

Blue Sky Solar Racing at Magellan Aerospace

Blue Sky Solar Racing Team would like to thank Magellan Aerospace for all their support! Magellan Aerospace helped our team welded all of our mechanical parts as well as  provided us facilities for manufacturing. 

We were generously invited to Magellan Aerospace to present and to do a test drive of our newest solar car Horizon. Our team was very excited to answer questions regarding our aerodynamic design, fabrication process, mechanical parts, and our electrical system.  

We would like to thank Magellan Aerospace again for all their support! We would not be able to do it without you!

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Horizon places 12th overall at WSC2015

After battling sandstorms, bushfires and strong headwinds, Horizon successfully completed the 3,000km journey across the Australian outback! The official time of 47hrs 39mins and 39secs places us 12th overall.

Thank you to all our sponsors, supporters and all those who helped us along the way! This would not have been possible without you.

Official results: http://www.worldsolarchallenge.org/dashboard/timing?day=
Photos: https://www.flickr.com/photos/blueskysolar/sets

 

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Testing on Cox Peninsula

Last week, Horizon passed the inspection by the Northern Territory Road Authority which means we were cleared to test on the highway along Cox Peninsula. It is the only public highway in the Northern Territory that solar cars are permitted to drive on.

Each day, we wake up at 6am to the sound of Amy Winehouse’s rendition of Valerie as our alarm clock. After a quick breakfast, we have our team meeting at 7am where we go through the plan for the day. We then put Horizon into the trailer and head out to Cox Peninsula, a 30-minute drive from our accommodations in Palmerston. Once we arrive at the starting point of our testing route, we perform a thorough check of each system in the car down to the very last bolt. When all is clear, we begin driving in caravan formation with the Lead vehicle out in front followed by the solar car and the Chase bringing up the rear.

Testing on the Australian roads is important because it gives us a chance to characterize the performance of the car to better understand the power consumption. It is also an opportunity for the drivers to become more familiar with the various sounds of the car so that during the race they are able to immediately identify anything that may be out of place. Lastly, we practice various procedures that may be needed during the race such as emergency pullovers, tire changes etc.

Next week we will be at the Hidden Valley racetrack for scrutineering. Only 10 days until the start of the 2015 Bridgestone World Solar Challenge! Follow our social media for the latest news and check out our Flickr for all the photos.

Inspection by Northern Territory Road Authority

Inspection by Northern Territory Road Authority

 

Road-side Pullover

Horizon driving along Cox Peninsula

Kangaroo crossing sign along Stuart Highway

Race Update 1

We’ve been a little quiet but very busy! Here are some updates on what we’ve been up to:

September 15 – Horizon departs Toronto for Adelaide via airfreight

Shipping a solar car, tools, and equipment is a big challenge. The shipment crate is custom made and we spend many hours packing and securing the car down to make sure it will survive the 18,000km journey from Toronto to New York, New York to Sydney, and finally Sydney to Adelaide! 

The custom crate that carries the solar car and equipment from Canada to Australia
The custom crate that carries the solar car and equipment from Canada to Australia

September 21 – Advance crew arrives in Adelaide

Four team members, what we like to call the 'advance crew', travelled to Adelaide to sort out some race logistics. The goal was to pick up Horizon and our equipment as well as the rental cars that will act as the support vehicles for the solar car during the race. We also had the opportunity to explore the city. We walked around Victoria Park and even visited the beautiful Brighton beach. Thank you to Brighton Secondary School for providing us with accommodations while in Adelaide!

Brighton beach in Adelaide, SA

Brighton beach in Adelaide, SA

September 24 – Advance crew picks up Horizon and equipment and departs for Darwin

On Sept 24. morning, we arrived at the Adelaide warehouse of CEVA Logistics, the company that managed the transport of our crate from Canada to Australia, and saw Horizon for the first time in a few weeks. We were excited but nervous as the crate was undergoing a quarantine inspection where the authorities checked our tools, equipment, and the car for any organic material. Thankfully, there were no major issues and the car was quickly released to us. We then began our drive up to Darwin. Along the way, we surveyed the race route making note of things like good camping spots, cattle grids, and roadwork. We even saw some kangaroos!

Kangaroo crossing sign along Stuart Highway

September 27 – Race crew assembles in Darwin

After over 30 hours of travelling, the rest of the crew arrived in Darwin. We were very happy to have everyone together. We immediately unpacked our equipment and set up shop so we could begin work on getting Horizon into race condition. Before we can drive on Australian roads, Horizon must be inspected by the Northern Territory Road Authority. Once this is complete, we will start testing.

We'd like to thank Palmerston Senior College for providing us with accommodations and a work space while in Darwin!

Only 18 days until the start of the race... Stay tuned for more!

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First team meeting in Australia