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Exact Solar Supports the 2024 Junior Solar Sprint

On Saturday, June 8, 2024, the Philadelphia Solar Energy Association (PSEA) held its 31st annual Junior Solar Sprint at Drexel University in Philadelphia. Exact Solar sponsored the event, helping build interest in solar as a career for the students who competed.

Under a sunny sky, students showcased their solar-powered model cars on Drexel University’s quad. The Junior Solar Sprint brought together students, teachers, parents, and volunteers for a day filled with competition, excitement, and renewable energy education.

The Junior Solar Sprint

The Junior Solar Sprint is a national program started by the Department of Energy in 1991 to inspire American students to pursue renewable technologies. It’s designed to teach students the fundamentals of solar photovoltaics (PV), basic electrical circuitry and wiring, battery storage, and the physics of energy transfer.

This event connects young students with engineers, scientists, and educators who act as mentors, helping students explore potential career pathways in STEM fields and encouraging the next generation of innovators.

On Saturday, middle school students from the Philadelphia area raced their pre-designed model solar cars across strips of black rubber laid out on the quad. The competition was fierce. Prizes were awarded to students for first, second, and third place in the following categories:

  • Speed
  • Technical Merit
  • Artistic Merit

Volunteers from PSEA and Drexel University worked tirelessly to ensure the success of this high-energy event. David Hammes, PSEA Board Member and Sales Engineer at Exact Solar, helped orchestrate the races and manage the finish line.

Students created several creative car designs, some thematic, others utilizing only recycled materials, and one that was a sandwich on wheels!

Exact Solar’s Commitment to Solar Education

The demand for qualified engineers, installers, and trained designers will grow as the solar industry grows. Exact Solar knows that if we want to hire great talent as we grow, we must foster young minds and help train the next generation.

That’s why we sponsor events like The Junior Solar Sprint, collaborate with workforce development programs like OIC Philadelphia, and are working behind the scenes to create a solar installer apprenticeship program.  

The Junior Solar Sprint is part of PSEA’s SPRINTS solar education program for 5th and 6th graders. It is available for download on PSEA’s website. This program is designed to improve the quality of STEM education and foster an early interest in renewable energy.

Looking Forward

Exact Solar looks forward to continuing to support this incredible event. We’re excited to see what else these students will create as they continue their STEM journeys!

If you’re interested in hosting a Junior Solar Sprint of your own or would just like to empower your child to build their own solar-powered car, here are a few resources you can use:

Solar energy is an incredible technology that can power much more than plastic cars. If you’re tired of paying exponentially growing power bills, Exact Solar would love to offer you a free consultation to show you how much you could save with solar energy! 

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