Designing and building a Solar Powered Car

Partner: Portslade Aldridge Community Academy, Portslade, Brighton
Partner type: Maintained School
Project category: Academic

Students from Portslade Aldridge Community Academy, UTC Harbourside and Ardingly College work together to design, build and then race a solar powered car across Australia. This project is the first one in a school in Europe. Students are involved with presenting ideas to potential sponsors, designing the car and driving it across the outback.

Aims of the project

To engage the wider community with our Solar Car project, and to help students from the state sector with developing STEM, and marketing skills.

Background and goals

Our Head of Science championed the idea of building and racing a solar Car across Australia, and has developed links with industry.


Ardingly College contributes a generous budget towards the project and some sponsorship is gained through industry. Our Head of science is engaged in the project as a proportion of his time, and we resource further technical and administrative support to enable the project to take place. Each car takes two years to design and build.


Hugely positive feedback from other schools, universities and companies involved.

Pupil involvement

Boys and girls in the upper secondary age group are involved, including Sixth Form students.

Frequency and duration

The project is on-going