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MIT wins first American solar car race.

MIT wins first American solar car race

The Solectria V, a solar-power car built and raced by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and sponsored by Dow Chemical U.S.A. and Arco Solar, blazed to the finish of the first U.S. solar car race last month. Looking like a high-tech soapbox racer topped with a flat board, the Solectria V finished ahead of the only other competitor--the Mana La--which is sponsored by John Paul Mitchell Systems of Hawaii. The Mana La, designed to use wind power as well as solar power, broke down and didn't finish the race.

The American Solar Cup race was held Sept. 17 in Visalia, Calif., over a 159.3-mile course, on public roads among regular traffic. This year's race is seen as a prelude to a much different race in 1989, says race director Robert Cotter. Plans for next year's solar race include a long-distance portion that could last as long as five days, and a race at a "major motor speedway" to test speed, efficiency and/or mileage, Cotter says.
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Title Annotation:Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Publication:Science News
Date:Oct 22, 1988
Words:177
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