Sunswift Racing

Current project

VIP Snapshot

Design and build the next generation solar-electric car (SEV). Be part of the Sunswift Racing team who is revolutionising the way we travel.

VIP ChallENG research goals

Sunswift Racing is UNSW’s solar-electric racing team and is Australia's top team. We combine innovative research with hands-on skills to create clean energy transport solutions. To prove the feasibility of our technology, we design and build solar-powered cars to race in the biennial Bridgestone World Solar Challenge – a 3,000km race from Darwin to Adelaide competing against universities from all around the world. Since its formation, Sunswift has produced seven solar-electric cars and has established a world-class reputation for fast-tracking careers, winning trophies and breaking world records. Recently, the team set a Guinness World Record for the lowest energy consumption while driving across Australia in a solar-electric car.

  • Composite design
  • Manufacturing
  • Electrical
  • Mechanical
  • Composites
  • Solar array design
  • Battery Design
  • Battery Management Systems
  • Finite element analysis
  • Computational fluid dynamics
  • Control systems
  • Sensor interfaces
  • Wired and wireless communications
  • Electrical circuit design
  • Telemetry
  • Low power circuits
  • Material Science
  • Business
  • Built Environment
The new Sunswift car for 2022

Explore the Sunswift Racing sub-teams

Below are the various aspects of Sunswift Racing you can choose to explore.

The Mechanical Team looks after the chassis, interior and exterior of the car as well as many of its moving parts. This includes everything from suspension and steering to the door hinges and latches. The Mechanical Team relies heavily on CAD, making use of packages such as ANSYS and SolidWorks to design and analyse parts. Come manufacturing time, the Mechanical Team performs much of the machining and composites work needed to bring the car to life. The Mechanical team also works with all other departments to facilitate integration of Electrical, Computer Science and Photovoltaic systems.

The Electrical Team develops and implements a wide range of electrical systems in the car. This includes everything from the electrical drive train and safety systems to the battery and hardware for communication networks. Altium is heavily used, which is an industry standard PCB design and development software. We design and build the various PCBs within the car ourselves. The Electrical Team works with all other departments to ensure a seamless integration with the Computer Science, Mechanical, and Photovoltaic systems.

The Software Team creates necessary Software Solutions for the general running of Sunswift Racing. This includes everything from coding the nodes in the car that enables it to drive to developing a solution that allows everyone in the team and also the public to view the current status of the car. We work with a range of computing languages and tools such as C, C#, Python, Bash, Docker, JS, Rust, and more!

The Photovoltaic Team designs and optimises the Solar Array with the sole intention of generating electricity to power all onboard electronics. This starts from the rigorously designed Photovoltaic Cells to the Maximum Power Point Trackers that enhance the quality of energy generation. It also includes temperature and irradiance sensors that monitor environmental conditions, thus allowing the team to establish diagnostic benchmarks of performance. We rely on various CAD programs being used to both design seamless fittings as well as pre-plan the fit of components in conjunction with other Sunswift departments.

The Systems Engineering Team handles the operations of the team across all departments. As an interdisciplinary field of engineering, the department manages the project's complex systems. It also handles the interfaces between departments to ensure they integrate together as a cohesive unit. Responsibilities include Verification and Validation, Operational Analysis, Functional Analysis, and Requirements Management. Systems Engineers have both a top-level view of the project as well as have the chance to work with the design engineers on the ground.

Team Academic Lead