Racing against the wind, and beating it

| 29 August 2016 | Category: News

tegenwindracenEvery year in August, Dutch and international teams compete in Racing Aeolus Den Helder, to beat the headwind. The event is one of the largest sustainability races in the world. The contesters prove that they are able to sail against the wind.

This August seven student teams from all over the world gathered for the 9th time to make an effort to generate power from the headwind and race their hyper modern cars against the wind over the unique Dutch sea dyke in the Dutch town of Den Helder.


Measuring racing time

The winner of the race is the car that shows the best ratio between the speed of the car and the wiond speed. When this ration is over 1, you win from the wind! To calculate the ratio, the speed of the vehicle (Vcar) and the average wind speed and direction during the race over 500 meters dyke, is being measured (Vws). The ratio of Vcar / Vws shows how efficient the vehicle races against the wind.

Mac Gaunaa from the Danish team DTU is extremely happy. Team member Robert Mikkelsen finished with a ratio of an amazing 101,76 percent against the head wind at the Sea dyke. The Danish have proved something that many thought was impossible. That made them, just as in 2015, the winner of Racing AeolusDen Helder 2016 Cup.

For the organising Wind Energy Events this is a great accomplishment. ‘We have always claimed that racing against the wind faster than the head wind itself, is possible. However, when that actually does happen, we of course are extremely happy and proud’, says Hans Verhoef, chairman of the organizing foundation. ‘Mostly, this is an encouragement for these and other students of international schools and technical universities to continue to innovate. Obviously, it is always possible to extend technological boundaries.’

Sustainability race

In the whole world, there are only four large sustainability races: The World Solar Challenge in Australia, The Dong Energy Solar Challenge Boat Race in Friesland (Holland), The Shell Eco Marathon in Delft (for cars on fossile fuels, also in Holland) and last but not least The Racing Aeolus in Den Helder.



Category: News