What is the Young Solar Challenge?

During the project ‘Young Solar challenge’ (exists since 2014) Our goal is to bring young people/the youth in contact with technique/science, innovation and durability in a fun way by teaching them how to build a solar boat by their self. The amount of participating teams becomes more and more every year. All pupils and teachers that have participated are so excited about the project that when it ends they want to join again the following year, or even decide to follow a technical study.

What does it cost and what do you get for it?

To participate the school has to purchase a building kit. The kit costs € 1750,- ex BTW. This includes a cutting kit, (the wood for the body) the rent for 1 season for the use of the sun panels, accu, MPPT’s and motor. The lesson package consists of 3 junior classes at an academy/university, an instruction video which helps by building the boat, starting permits for the races and the nights at the camping’s. if you still have all the components but are you still building a boat than the kit costs € 1150,- ex BTW. 

Any other extra costs are for the catering. We offer a catering kit (costs for this will be announced later because we still have to discuss the price with the caterers.) the team can decide for them self if they want to take this deal or not. The kit includes: a breakfast- lunch package and a diner. 

You participate, and then?

We start handing out the kits after the Christmas holiday. If you want to have the kits earlier we can always discuss this. Handing out the kits is in connection with the junior classes though. If we hand out the kit for you earlier you do have to wait a little longer for the junior classes.

The junior classes are about building the boat, the electricity system but also about the team and the finances etc.

Team and accompaniment

The direct accompaniment is via school. We take care of everything we described by the kit. The rest of the accompaniment is for the school to decide. We are of course still always present for questions.

If you want to know and more about how it is for a school to accompany a project like this, there are diverse teachers who wouldn’t mind answering some questions for you. We can bring you in contact with one of them if you would like that.

The maximum of people in the team is 2 teachers and 8 students. For all ten of these people we will arrange the races and overnight stays. Less than this is also a possibility. That depends on the team, how experienced they are, how much time they get etc. There are also schools that allow several classes to participate in the project during the course of the project, but eventually one group of participants will be involved.

The races

Last year we organized 3 races in the period: May to June. The fun thing about participating to 3 races is that after every race you can develop your team even more. That’s also the case for the boat. Evaluate and improve.

The students who are going to control the boat have to take a swimming and a cruise test first. This way we can make sure that they are able to control the boat and are able to help themselves if they might fall into the water. Before the boat is allowed to participate in the races it is subjected to a thorough technical inspection. We want to make sure that everything happens how it’s supposed to happen because water and technique is still a combination that wouldn’t go together at all normally. To make everything happen perfectly the teams arrive at the camping a day before the race. On the first day all Inspections and preparations will take place. The day after it’s time to race! After every race there will of course be a award ceremony. The team that has the highest score after all races will be represented champion. 

Depending on the sign ups that we will get for the next season we will decide if it will be possible for us to have more than one preliminary rounds around the country. (For example in the top and in the bottom of the country). And that will end in a national final.

Young Solar Challenge in picture

The Young Solar Challenge is a combination of technique, tactics and teamwork. Here’s an overview in picture.