What We Do
CalSol, the UC Berkeley Solar Vehicle Team, is a non-profit organization whose purpose is to design, build, test, and race fully solar-powered vehicles. We have built a multitude of solar cars in the past, racing them at national and international competitions. Composed of over fifty undergraduate students from a variety of disciplines, we provide students with hands-on experience with real-world engineering, project management, and business aptitude.
Our members come from a variety of backgrounds and a wide range of majors across engineering and the humanities. They learn valuable skills that cannot be replicated in a classroom, and gain real-world engineering experience. Our members hone their leadership and stress-management skills in high-stakes competitions, and bond closely over the course of the build cycle.
By building a competitive solar vehicle, CalSol aims to advance renewable energy technology. The cutting-edge, efficient vehicle systems that we develop are the first step in building mass-market solutions to real-world energy and environmental concerns. Our solar array power point trackers being developed were presented at a research conference for their efficiency and power density.
Throughout the year, CalSol participates in various community and campus events to spread awareness of green tenchnology and inspire participation in STEM activities. We demonstrate our technology to local schools, and present our vehicle and mission at Maker Fair, Engineering 4 Kids, Cal Day, Discovery Days, and other wide-reaching events.
Formula Sun Grand Prix
A 3 day race on the only Formula One track in the United States, the track challenges every aspect of vehicle dynamics and performance.
Our last three showings at the track resulted in first (2017), second (2019), and fifth (2021) place finishes.
American Solar Challenge
A 7 day race across America, the differing weather and terrain conditions make this race a real challenge.
In 2018 we were able to complete the race entirely under solar power, and we will build on that success as we compete in 2022 and 2024.
Bridgestone World Solar Challenge
A 6 day race across Australia from Darwin to Adelaide, the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge is the ultimate test of speed and efficiency.
We hope to use our experience from racing in the 2019 BWSC and a cutting-edge new car to land a podium finish in 2023.