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Tuesday, July 08, 2008

2 Days of Scrutineering Complete

Nearing the end of day two of scrutineering our team finds itself with just two more stations to complete: array and dynamics.

Scrutineering lasts three days and is made up of eight stations that are used to ensure each team meets regulations and has both a safe car and a safe team. The eight stations are support, array, electrical, battery protection, mechanical, driver, body & sizing, and dynamics. The only station that does not relate directly to the solar car is the support station. This station ensures that the support vehicles have the proper equipment and that the team is practicing proper safety techniques. After demonstrating our safety procedures and getting a couple pointers from the safety officer, we were able to properly demonstrate safe roadside procedures and pass the station.

The array station checks for array power and measures the array to ensure it fits to regulations. We have passed most of the station, but we are still awaiting officials to create the templates needed to ensure we have the correct number of solar cells on our car. Hopefully officials will have the templates completed tomorrow. The electrical station looked into all electrical components of the solar car and was coupled with battery protection (BPS). BPS is important as it shuts off the battery pack if any battery module goes over voltage, gets too hot, or meets a few other non-safe conditions. We passed both these stations on our first pass!

Next we have the mechanical station. Receiving a yellow sticker at this station on Monday meant we had three things to fix on the vehicle. Returning to the station this afternoon, we have now received a green sticker and have cleared the mechanical station. We also weighed in our driver, passed egress (the driver was able to get out of the vehicle in under 10 seconds), and passed the driver station. Next up we have the body & sizing station. This station inspects the vehicle to ensure it meets many of the remaining regulations such as the size of the vehicle, the presence and intensity of lights, the visibility of the driver, and many others. Passing this station on Monday with a yellow sticker, we returned today and received a green sticker.

Following the main stations is dynamics. Teams must complete driver, body & sizing, mechanical, electrical, and battery protection with at least a yellow sticker before attempting to pass the dynamic station. Attending this station on Monday, we passed the turning tests, the figure eight test, and the slalom test. We need to return and repeat the U-turn test, and complete the dry and wet breaking. Unfortunately as soon as we were ready to return today, a large storm hit Cresson, Texas. With rumors of hail, we decided to put the car away and attend the station early tomorrow morning, when the station opens. While putting away the tent, our team took advantage of the Base-X tents. Within minutes of deciding to pack up camp for the upcoming storm, our team set up wind lines on the main tent and had a second tent set up for shelter.

And now the team prepares for sleep and heads to bed. Until tomorrow, good night!

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2 Comments:

Blogger Vance Shutes said...

Jeff,

Thank you for the detailed explanation of how the team prepares for its journey to Australia. Keep up the great work, and may the sun shine long on your efforts!

July 9, 2008 at 9:18 AM  
Anonymous Cramers said...

Congratulations on well-done preliminaries!

We've been watching the NASC scrutineering status website, and have seen the progress you've made - great job!

From: Kristine's Family

July 9, 2008 at 3:10 PM  

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