Technical Education

700 SoCal High School Students Competing in Nation's Largest Solar-Powered Boat Competition

About 700 students from 38 Southern California high school teams are expected to compete in the 14th annual Solar Cup, the nation’s largest solar-powered boat competition, May 13-15.

The event is the culmination of a year-long education program sponsored by the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California. The students have been learning about water conservation, alternative energy, engineering, math and science, according to a press release issued by the water district.

The competition will take place from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. this weekend at Lake Skinner in Temecula Valley. Students will test their boats in the water Friday, then race them Saturday and Sunday, a water district spokeswoman said.

The students will also show 60-second water conservation videos and social media campaigns that they have been working on for the past several months, the spokeswoman said.

The Solar Cup began in 2002 with eight teams and about 80 students, a press statement said. Along the way, about 10,000 students have participated in Solar Cup competitions, and many have gone on to careers in math, physics, engineering and environmental science after learning about water conservation and alternative energy development in this program, the statement said.

About the Author

Richard Chang is associate editor of THE Journal. He can be reached at [email protected].