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2019 STEM Design Challenge: Junior Solar Sprint

June 15, 2019
10:00:am - 2:00:pm
Cape Cod Community College
Tennis Courts
2240 Iyannough Rd.
West Barnstable, MA 02668
  • Students design and build a solar car to race in the solar sprint.


The Cape Cod Regional STEM Network, in partnership with Cape & Islands Self Reliance, announces the 2019 Annual STEM Design Challenge. Students in grades 3-8 from across the Cape & Islands are invited to design, build and compete in a Junior Solar Sprint (JSS) competition to be held at Cape Cod Community College on June 15, 2019. JSS is a national program that was developed to provide a hands-on opportunity for students to apply Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) concepts, creativity, and problem-solving skills as they design, construct, and race solar-powered cars.

Each Junior Solar Sprint team is required to design and build a model car no larger than 30 cm x 60 cm x 30 cm. The cars must be powered by sunlight using a solar photovoltaic cell that converts the sun’s energy into electricity. Students must consider such critical factors as aerodynamic drag, rolling resistance, weight, and drive train when designing their cars for speed and reliability. The race is a double elimination competition with awards going to the fastest cars. Awards also will be given in design categories.

“Students have an exciting opportunity to apply the scientific concepts they are learning in class to a real-world challenge with Junior Solar Sprint,” says Lynda Haitz, national program manager for JSS at the Technology Student Association. “Kids develop teamwork and problem-solving abilities, investigate environmental issues, gain hands-on engineering skills, and use principals of science and math to get the fastest, most interesting, and best crafted vehicle possible,” she said.

This event starts at 10 am, on June 15, 2019, at the tennis courts at Cape Cod Community College. Races will begin at 10:30 and the awards ceremony will take place at 1:30. To enter a team, teachers and parents can use the registration link in the box to the right. Rules for this competition are attached in the PDF document in the resources box.

Design challenge instructions, material specifications, lesson plans, video tutorials and additional documents are available in the resources link in the box to the right.

The Junior Solar Sprint program is sponsored by the U.S. Army Educational Outreach Program and is managed by the Technology Student Association. The Army Educational Outreach Program is comprised of Army sponsored research, education, competitions, internships and practical experiences designed to engage and guide students and teachers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education. Visit for more information.