Information on this blog is raw and sometimes unverified reporting straight from the road by teams. The event will issue a media release for any events requiring an official notification.

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Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Mon 19 Oct running smoothly (touch wood)

I get up early as usual, there are plenty of things that need to be done, whilst I know the car is here and safely locked in the pits at Hidden Valley, I still haven't seen it and it hasn't been out of the trailer, so we need to get it out and make sure things are up and running. We also need to go and get the support trailer which is in a transport company yard on the outskirts of Darwin.

I sort a bit of gear out and eventually the team begins to arise. I ask if they've slept well and what time they got to sleep, they all assure me it was around 11pm. I'm not so sure, it'll be interesting to see how well they make it through the day.

Around 7:30am I have seen that all of the team members are up and about, at 7:45 Julian, James, Jeandre and I take off out to Pinelands to get the support trailer. The rest of the team will meet us at Hidden Valley.

When we get there the team is busy unpacking the solar car trailer but have had to borrow some spanners to remove the wheel chocks to get the car out. Ours are in the crate at the bottom in front of the car and inaccessible with the car in. Mental note: Place tools required to get car out of trailer in box accessible with car in trailer.

The car comes out of the trailer and a number of teams come by to check it out. We remove the tape securing the array panels and look inside. The car seems to have survived the journey well and we set about installing batteries whilst Doug installs the brand new driver interface control board. This was the part that caused us problems in 2007 and I ordered a new one which arrived last week. I have one other one which works but does not allow us to have our display panels and a second spare that was given to us by the guys from UNSW, just trying to cover all bases.

We make changes to the current sense board, the readings were negative so we had to swap the wires around, and we install the batteries. Each Battery Pack weighs around 30kg and they are awkward to slide into the car but they seem to go in easily and it seems to be getting easier each time we do it. A quick check to see that every thing is plugged in correctly and we hold our breath as we power up. Everything boots first time including display panels for the motor controller. We are happy.

By this stage we have decided to send some of the team back to the apartments. They have some lunch and then go into town for some souvenir shopping. The crew at the race track fit the telemetry and current sense interface boards and go for a couple of laps around the circuit. Ross our Principal has taken some leave to come up to Darwin to see the start of the race and has come out to the track to see what is happening. He jumps into the support vehicle as we lap Hidden Valley Race track.

I am pleased with today's efforts and the crew left at the track head back to the accommodation. Spaghetti Bolognaise, garlic bread and leafy salad is on the menu for tonight and it goes down a treat. There seems to be enough to feed two teams though, but this is a bonus as we will freeze what is left and take it on our journey to Adelaide. Tomorrow night James is preparing a surprise for the team, I'm looking forward to it.

John Beattie Leeming SHS Solar Car Team.

1 comment:

Ashley Oversby :) said...

Hii guys!!! I wanna go next year!!! Keep up the good work and have fun.
And don't forget to turn off the car.