Welcome to NUsolar
We’re building the future of sustainability engineering and leadership at Northwestern University
The Northwestern University Solar Car Team is a student organization that designs, builds, and races solar powered vehicles. Our mission is to provide opportunities for Northwestern Students to gain hands on experience with challenging engineering problems related to energy efficient design, advanced composite materials manufacturing, high power electrical systems, and embedded microprocessing.
Design, Build, Test. NUsolar provides hands-on project management, design, and manufacturing experience in addition to providing an outlet for students to demonstrate their skills. Our members create CAD models of their designs and then get to build them using advanced manufacturing methods in our world-class prototyping shop.
NUsolar is a completely student-run organization, so team members can take on a wide spectrum of responsibilities in including engineering, manufacturing, operations, marketing and finance. Students learn how to create project plans, communicate professionally with corporations, and teach each other what it takes to make a solar car.
We’re the solar car team– sustainability is our middle name. We frequently do outreach events with our solar car in the Greater Chicago area. Our goal is to get the public excited about how Northwestern students are making advances in alternative energy transportation. If you have questions about scheduling a visit, head over to Education page.
SC6 is made up of a composite monocoque chassis and airfoil shaped body, with a steel roll cage. The structural parts of the body are comprised of carbon fiber/Nomex sandwich glued together with high strength epoxy. Several steel and aluminum plates reinforce the steering and suspension system, which bears high amounts of stress.
Just as our other past cars, SC6 is a fully functional electric vehicle which can be legally driven on any road, although we don’t plan on taking it out on the highway just yet. It is equipped with headlights, turn signals, and a rear-view camera system for driving in reverse.
Every year, 30 teams from around the Americas gather in Austin, TX to race in the American Solar Challenge and Formula Sun Grand Prix.
The races consist of an endurance section on the Circuit of the Americas Formula 1 track, and a cross-country section where caravans of solar cars travel half-way across the U.S, stopping at different checkpoints along the way.