AU Solar Car

& Cradlepoint Partnership

Anderson University’s solar car offers faculty and students the excitement and experience of building, modifying, and testing a car designed to meet the requirements of the American Solar Challenge. The car, named Solis Corvus (Sun Raven in Latin), arrived on campus during the summer of 2016. The car is part of the university’s curriculum, and students can get academic credit for their work. It is truly a hands-on experience as students prepare for careers in related fields. You can contact the team at solarcar@anderson.edu.

Cradlepoint is a leading provider of cloud-based wired and wireless networking solutions, and is generously sponsoring the equipment and software needed to set up and maintain this technology, with the Verizon LTE service as the only cost to AU. After installing the Cradlepoint software and equipment, the AU Solar Car team can now communicate via the internet, rather than using walkie-talkies as most teams do. The walkie-talkie system severely limits the range of communication between Solar Car team members while on cross-country competition drives.

How Cradlepoint Technology Works

With the Cradlepoint technology, the team members must simply be connected to the internet (using wifi or LTE data) to communicate with each other in real time from anywhere across the country. This is intended to be just the beginning of a longer partnership with Cradlepoint. “This partnership exposes students to these devices,” Dr. Kyle Tarplee, Assistant Professor of Electrical & Computer Engineering.

This technology can be used in other capacities on campus, including a backup internet connection, and training for other programs like the School of Nursing. In fact, the use of technology in the disaster response after Hurricane Katrina helped to bolster the funding of Cradlepoint. Using equipment that fits in a backpack and is connected to the Cradlepoint network, nurses working in disaster relief can do extensive medical tests in victim centers, send the results to doctors at hospitals or other facilities who can analyze them and send them back to the nurses so they can complete treatment.

The School of Science and Engineering faculty and staff look forward to the many benefits that this technology will bring to AU students. Cradlepoint also works with Ascension, the lead sponsor of the AU’s Cybersecurity Engineering Laboratory, where they deliver preconfigured units to avoid length wireless internet setup at their new Ascension facilities.

Student Team Members

Students currently working on the car include:

  • Tom Sheahan
  • Chris Hobbs
  • Riley Keesling
  • Robby Woolums

Past team members:

  • Josh Ewing
  • Smith Joseph
  • Matt Milford
  • Chris Newman
  • Caleb Overstreet
  • Rob Shaver
  • Jerell Sneed
  • Jacob White

Team member Chris Hobbs says the first time he saw the Solar Car, he knew he wanted to be involved. He joined the team because, in his words, “I enjoy working with my hands and working on cars.” As a mechanical engineering major, his work on the car is also related to his career goals.

Sponsors

Students on the team appreciate the gifts of donors whose support will help them reach their goals of becoming competitive on the national stage. Learn about corporate sponsorships levels.

Thank you to our current sponsors:

  • Perfecto Tool
  • Lehman’s Mechanical
  • C B Fabricating
  • Carter Express
  • Allred’s Collision Center
  • Anderson Speedway
  • CradlePoint
  • Battery Express
  • Borg Warner
  • Dossett’s Garage
  • AVT Composites
  • Ralph Engle
  • Terry Pahls
  • Mark Sipka

 

Give to the Solar Car