LOS ANGELES--(EON: Enhanced Online News)--The build-up for Metropolitan Water District’s 11th annual Solar Cup™ officially begins over the next two Saturdays as students from 48 high schools in six Southern California counties piece together the hulls for the solar-powered boats they will equip and race next spring.
“It gives Southland high school students hands-on lessons in engineering, math, science, renewable resources and environmental education and communication, and informs them and their families about the sources of California’s drinking water and the continuing need for conservation”
Solar Cup, which Metropolitan began in 2002 with just eight teams and about 80 students, has become the nation’s largest solar-powered boat competition. This year, more than 700 students will participate as part of 40 Solar Cup teams (see attached list).
Metropolitan General Manager Jeffrey Kightlinger called Solar Cup one of the district’s most successful education and outreach programs.
“It gives Southland high school students hands-on lessons in engineering, math, science, renewable resources and environmental education and communication, and informs them and their families about the sources of California’s drinking water and the continuing need for conservation,” Kightlinger said.
“Along the way, Solar Cup also has encouraged many participants to attend college and to pursue careers in engineering, science, environmental issues and communication,” he added.
Beginning at 8 a.m. Saturday (Nov. 2), about half of the teams will gather at Three Valleys Municipal Water District headquarters in Claremont to build identical, canoe-like hulls out of kits of pre-cut, marine-grade plywood. The remaining teams will gather at Three Valleys the following Saturday (Nov. 9).
Once the hulls are completed, the teams take them back to their schools to equip them over the next seven months with motors, batteries, solar-collection panels, rudders and steering systems.
The program will conclude with the Solar Cup competition May 16-18, 2014 at Metropolitan’s Lake Skinner near Temecula in southwestern Riverside County, where the teams will compete in endurance and sprint races. The event is open to the public.
As part of the education program, Metropolitan provides the hull kits and tool boxes and sponsors technical workshops for the teams and their teachers/advisors that represent schools in Los Angeles, Orange, San Diego, Riverside, San Bernardino and Ventura counties.
Metropolitan’s member public water agencies and, in some cases, local water retailers, sponsor the teams to help equip the boats. In addition to individual schools, this year four teams are comprised of students from multiple schools—boats representing Temecula Valley, Perris Union High School District, Moreno Valley Unified School District and Hemet Unified School District.
The 2014 Solar Cup program includes five first-time, or rookie, teams, who will compete with each other. Another 34 returning, or veteran, teams must build a new hull but may re-use motors, batteries, solar panels and other equipment from previous years.
Teams also are required to submit technical reports and create a public service announcement. Winners in the newcomer and veteran divisions will have the highest number of points from the competitions, plus points awarded for attendance at workshops, technical reports and producing public service announcements.
Solar Cup’s technical advisor is Dr. Adrian Hightower, assistant professor of engineering in the Department of Engineering at Harvey Mudd College, Claremont, assisted by engineering students at Harvey Mudd and Occidental colleges.
The 2013 Solar Cup program had 40 teams, of which three were newcomers. First place in the rookie division was won by Glendora High School sponsored by Three Valleys Municipal Water District. First place in the veterans’ division went to Savannah High School, sponsored by Anaheim Public Utilities.
The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California is a cooperative of 26 cities and water agencies serving 19 million people in six counties. The district imports water from the Colorado River and Northern California to supplement local supplies, and helps its members to develop increased water conservation, recycling, storage and other resource-management programs.
2014 Solar Cup™ Team List
|Team/School Name||City||Member Agency Sponsor||Co-Sponsor Agency|
|Academia Avance||Los Angeles||Los Angeles Dept of Water & Power|
|Anaheim HS||Anaheim||Anaheim Public Utilities|
|Applied Technology HS||Montebello||Central Basin MWD|
|Arcadia HS||Arcadia||Upper San Gabriel Valley MWD|
|Arlington HS||Riverside||Western MWD||Riverside Public Utilities|
|Calabasas HS *||Calabasas||Las Virgenes MWD|
|California Academy of Math & Science||Carson||West Basin MWD|
|Canyon HS||Anaheim||Anaheim Public Utilities|
|Chino HS||Chino||Inland Empire Utilities Agency||City of Chino|
|Compton HS||Compton||City of Compton|
|David Gonzales School||Calabasas||Las Virgenes MWD|
|Duarte HS / Pamela Park||Duarte||Upper San Gabriel Valley MWD|
|Elsinore HS||Wildomar||Western MWD||Elsinore Valley MWD|
|Environmental Charter HS||Lawndale||West Basin MWD|
|Franklin HS||Los Angeles||Los Angeles Dept of Water & Power|
|Fremont Academy of Engineering & Design *||Pomona||Three Valleys MWD|
|Ganesha HS||Pomona||Three Valleys MWD|
|Glenn HS *||Norwalk||Central Basin MWD|
|Hemet Unified Team||Hemet||Eastern MWD||Rancho California Water District|
|High Tech High North County||San Marcos||San Diego County Water Authority|
|John Muir HS||Pasadena||Pasadena Water & Power|
|La Cañada HS||La Cañada Flintridge||Foothill MWD||La Cañada Irrigation District|
|Laguna Beach HS||Laguna Beach||Municipal Water District of Orange County||Laguna Beach County Water District|
|Long Beach Poly HS||Long Beach||Long Beach Water Department|
|Los Osos HS||Rancho Cucamonga||Inland Empire Utilities Agency||Cucamonga Valley Water District|
|Moreno Valley USD Team||San Jacinto||Eastern MWD||Rancho California Water District|
|Mountain View HS||El Monte||Upper San Gabriel Valley MWD|
|Norte Vista HS *||Riverside||Western MWD||Riverside Public Utilities|
|Oak Park HS||Oak Park||Calleguas MWD||Triunfo Sanitation District|
|Palos Verdes HS||Palos Verdes Estates||West Basin MWD|
|Palos Verdes Peninsula HS||Rolling Hills Estates||West Basin MWD|
|Paramount HS West||Paramount||Central Basin MWD|
|Perris Union High SD Team||Menifee||Eastern MWD||Rancho California Water District|
|Providence HS *||Burbank||Burbank Water & Power|
|San Dimas HS||San Dimas||Three Valleys MWD|
|Santana HS||La Puente||Three Valleys MWD||Walnut Valley Water District|
|Savanna HS||Anaheim||Anaheim Public Utilities|
|Temecula Valley Team||Temecula||Eastern MWD||Rancho California Water District|
|Warren HS||Downey||Central Basin MWD|
|West Covina HS *||West Covina||Upper San Gabriel Valley MWD|
* Rookie Teams