The Aeolus Race will be run in Den Helder, a sea port in the Netherlands, on August 23, 2008. Six European teams will participate to this competition with wind-powered vehicles (WPVs). The track is a 5.3 kilometers seawall on the boundary between land and the sea. The students' team at the University of Stuttgart is ready to race the wind and will show its Ventomobile during a presentation at the University campus in Vaihingen on August 12, 2008. Of course, as the Aeolus Race is a competition, awards will be given by the organizers. And while it's logical that awards are given to the fastest team or for the best design, an unusual one will be granted for 'bad luck.' But read more...
You can see on the left the wind-powered Ventomobile, a vehicle built by students of the Team InVentus at Stuttgart University. (Photo: Tobias Klaus, Stuttgart University) Here is a link to a larger version) of this photo.
Here is an excerpt from the University of Stuttgart news release (link to the German version, "Fahren mit dem Wind"). "Students of the Team InVentus at Stuttgart University constructed a vehicle that is solely powered by wind energy, the Ventomobile. It took them many months of intense construction work to reach this goal. First wind tunnel testing produced very promising results. The extremely stylish three-wheeler features a two-bladed rotor on top, with a diameter of two meters. The efficiency of this setup proved to be extremely good."
If you're around Stuttgart on August 12, 2008, don't miss the presentation of the Ventomobile. "Attending journalists will get the opportunity to observe the vehicle during wind tunnel tests, to see the braiding of a drive shaft, and the laminating of a rotor blade. Subject to favourable wind conditions the Ventomobile can also be watched doing a test drive." I guess that a vast majority of you will not be in Stuttgart on this date, so here is a link to a short video of the construction of the Ventomobile (2 minutes and 33 seconds).
The Aeolus Race is organized by Windenergy Events. It will be one of several events occurring during The Tall Ships' Races 2008 which will take place in the Den Helder sea port, located about 80 km north of Amsterdam.
Now, let's look at some of the rules of this competition. Let's start with the specifications for a wind-powered vehicle (WPV).
- Land based vehicle driving on wheels and steered by a driver
- Propelled by a device with spinning blades or Darius turbine coupled to the wheels
- Storage of energy allowed, storage device shall be empty at start (verifiable)
And here is a partial list of requirements for the WPVs allowed to compete during the Aeolus Race.
- Circumferential bumper, height 0.5m above ground, outside dimensions: length = 4m, width: = 2m
- Vertical projection of all parts shall remain within the maximum length and width of the circumferential bumper
- Maximum height of the complete vehicle is 3.5m.
- Maximum rotor area 4m2
- Minimal 3 wheels, not in line
If you're in the Netherlands between August 20 and 23, 2008, go to Den Helder and support the teams behind these eco-friendly vehicles!
Sources: University of Stuttgart news release, via AlphaGalileo, August 4, 2008; and various websites
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