World Solar Challenge to Shine Next Week

Proving the potential of solar energy, this Sunday 42 teams from around the world will begin a race from Darwin to Adelaide, Australia, in vehicles powered only by the sun.

The World Solar Challenge is a biennial competition covering nearly 1,900 miles through the Australian outback over eight days. Teams from universities, corporations, and even a few high schools participate, ultimately with the objective of promoting research on solar-powered cars. This year marks the 30th anniversary of the challenge to race using only unique gifts from the sun as fuel.

Hammacher Schlemmer embraces the potential of renewable energy, with a solar-powered vehicle in our own selection of unique gifts. This velomobile sports a solar-powered motor, enabling jaunts to be powered by the sun or through your pedaling power. A solar panel built into the roof powers the motor for up to 45 miles on a single charge or 100 miles when combined with pedaling, at up to 30 mph. Because it’s legally classified as a bicycle, the solar velomobile doesn’t require a license to drive. 

Our unique gifts bring solar power to your home, too. Offered only by Hammacher Schlemmer, this solar walkway light ranked first in all tests conducted by the Hammacher Schlemmer Institute. It generated 60 lumens—a measure of light intensity—and glowed for 75% longer than other models. Even after eight hours, its bright beam had not diminished. This solar-powered light automatically turns on at dusk, and the solar panel on top recharges in moderate to full sunshine.

Let solar power give you a charge when electricity is not available. This portable power station can use an optional solar panel, enabling you to charge devices anywhere. About the size of a toaster, the rechargeable power station transports easily in an RV, car, or boat or can serve as a backup power supply for a home or cabin to charges a smartphone, tablet or digital camera. It also provides power for CPAP machines and portable TV sets.

This year, the theme of the World Solar Challenge is “Dream Bigger. Go Farther.” It’s this passion among the racers and designers that will lead to improved solar technology in years to come. We eagerly await the inventions of tomorrow that bring renewable sources of energy into all our lives, every day.

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