Inaugural UC Irvine American Solar Challenge team gains support from local business

Students to build solar car to compete in renowned national race

The UC Irvine SolEaters

Sullivan Solar Power announced today they would be supporting students at UC Irvine competing in the American Solar Challenge, with the race taking place in 2020. The company has donated materials to the UC Irvine “SolEaters” to build a fully-solar vehicle, as part of a nationally and globally recognized competition that brings teams from colleges across the nation and the world to build and race a solar-powered vehicle. The competition is a nine-day long, two-thousand-mile race from Omaha, Nebraska to Bend, Oregon, with the student-built vehicles using only the power of the sun for their energy.

“Sullivan Solar Power is proud to support these incredibly driven and innovate students. They understand the need to harness sustainable resources like solar to power our lives and industries” said founder and president of Sullivan Solar Power, Daniel Sullivan. “The level of initiative and creativity from this technical team is impressive, and we are excited to help support the SolEaters on their journey to the competition.”

This will be UC Irvine’s first time participating in the national competition, which is organized by the Innovators Educational Foundation. The first solar race was held in 1990, with cars traveling from Orlando, Florida to Warren, Michigan. Since then, every two years students from universities throughout the country and around the world build solar-powered vehicles to compete in an endurance race across the United States.

The idolaters’ team consist of more than 20 passionate UC Irvine students with a variety of majors from mechanical engineering, materials science, electrical engineering, biomedical engineering, and business. This collaboration continues to push the boundaries of student skill sets in engineering, teamwork, and achievement beyond the classroom and puts them into practice. The race will test the team’s ability to design and build a street-legal car that is highly efficient and safe while being fully powered by the sun.

“Sullivan Solar Power has not only been incredibly helpful with providing our team with resources and support but also in providing the bigger picture to why a sustainable future requires a community effort,” said Project Manager of the UCI solar car team, Lizette Nguyen. “We appreciate Sullivan Solar Power for investing in our brand new team to build UCI’s first solar car to compete in the American Solar Challenge.”

The solar car has been named the ZotSun by the student team, and construction of the vehicle has commenced. It incorporates an asymmetric design to minimize aerodynamic drag and includes two Mitsuba motors, 416 Panasonic lithium ion cells, and 250 Sunpower silicon solar cells. Sullivan Solar Power donated in-kind materials to the building of the car and will play an active role in providing guidance and education as a resource to the team on campus.

To learn more about Sullivan Solar Power’s mission and projects, visit

About Sullivan Solar Power

Sullivan Solar Power is a turnkey solar system provider that delivers solar electric projects from concept to completion. The company has installed more than 7,500 systems and 70,000,000 watts of solar power ranging from small-scale residential to large-scale commercial and municipal systems. Sullivan Solar Power was founded by Daniel Sullivan in 2004. The firm has been named one of the fastest growing energy companies in the nation by Inc. Magazine and services Southern California. Sullivan Solar Power was voted Best Solar Power Company by both the San Diego Union Tribune and the Orange County Register. The company is a top developer for energy storage in the state. Regardless of project size and scope, Sullivan is committed to delivering the best products and the most qualified professionals to its customers. Visit or call 1.800.SULLIVAN.

Source: Sullivan Solar Power


Categories: Energy

Tags: american solar challenge, clean tech, irvine, mechanical engineering, orange county, renewable, solar, solar energy, students, uc irvine, university

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Sullivan Solar Power was founded in 2004 by Daniel Sullivan, a native San Diegan electrician who was inspired to lead a solar energy revolution. Today, Sullivan Solar Power has over 8,500 clients and is 1 of10 NABCEP Accredited companies in the U.S.

Tara Kelly
Tara Kelly
Director of Community Development , Sullivan Solar Power
Sullivan Solar Power
8949 Kenamar Dr. (101)
San Diego, CA 92121
United States