The Mechanical Team is in charge of the overall design of the solar car. They design and build the aerodynamic shell, the chassis, and the vehicle's suspension. Aside from building the solar car, the Mechanical Team coordinate the driver controls such as steering, braking, and acceleration.
The electrical team is responsible for the design, selection, and installation of all electrical subsystems in the car. These systems include, but are not limited to, the battery pack, battery protection system (BPS), motor controllers, sensors, driver control interface, and the solar array. All circuit boards on the car, except for the motor controllers and MPPTs (Maximum Power Point Trackers), are custom designed and assembled by member of the electrical team. These boards are then programmed by electrical team members in collaboration with members of the computer science team. They also collaborate on the implementation of the telemetry system for the car, which is used for strategy during our races. For Gato del Sol VI the electrical team designed and built a new battery pack, dashboard, solar array, 12 new PCBs (printed circuit boards), implanted two new motors, and implemented four new MPPTS. Unfortunately, the new BPS was not completed in time for the 2018 race so an off the shelf unit was temporarily used in its place. In the coming years the team will work on refining the design of Gato del Sol VI to reduce power consumption, component size, and cost leading up to our next vehicle.
The Strategy & Computer Science Team is mainly responsible for data collection and strategy planning. During the race, they collect real-time data from the many embedded systems on the car, including the battery, motor, Maximum Power Point Trackers (MPPT), and various other devices. They then take those data and further analyze them to infer more useful information like the battery state of charge, battery runtime, and optimal speed for maximum travel distance. The analysis sector is in work-in-progress, and they will soon create a model of Gato V to fully understand its behavior for more accurate strategy.
This Business Team in responsible for creating the public image of our team. The Business Team finds our donors that make funding the team possible. They plans outreach events that we take the car to and showcase our work. The Business Team is also in charge of updating our social media outlets.