Central University of Technology: Seilatsatsi


TEAM | Central University of Technology: Seilatsatsi


COUNTRY | South Africa

CLASS | Challenger

Team Seilatsatsi is back to compete for the second time in the Sasol Solar Challenge and are bringing a brand-new car for this year’s challenge.

For the 2018 Sasol Solar Challenge, the team built their first solar car in a very short time, and felt they needed more time for testing. Their experience now enables them to improve on their 2018 strategy.

Their first solar car was named Pere ea Letsatsi – a Sesotho name that means ‘horse from the sun’. For the 2022 challenge, their new car will be called ‘Ntsu’ – Eagle.

“We have learned a great deal from our participation in the 2018 Sasol Solar Challenge competing with Pere ea Letsatsi and because of our resilience, passion and enduring spirit, Ntsu was born,” said team leader Nicolaas Luwes. “An eagle, can soar higher than other birds, soaring with almost no energy lost.  The new car design looks like an eagle head and we’re hoping it will fly – or rather, drive like an eagle.”

Ntsu will be revealed at the university’s launch ceremony on the 19th of August. The car will have a new chassis, aiming for reliability on uneven road surfaces. The new design will incorporate 3D-printing of custom components, electronics and many other features.

The strong team of 14 members comprises of staff, alumni and current students ranging from 24 to 42 years of age. Skills range includes computer, electronic, electrical and mechanical engineering.

In the 2018 Sasol Solar Challenge, the team won the coveted community engagement award for the demonstration of technologies to the school learners along the route. They loaded 360° footage shot from their solar car onto virtual reality headsets which young kids from towns along the route used to immerse themselves in the driving experience.

“We are looking forward to experiencing the heights that Ntsu will soar to and invite communities along the route to show your support for the team as we make our way through South Africa’s prestigious event – the Sasol Solar Challenge,” said Luwes.

The eight-day challenge will travel from Johannesburg to Cape town. It will make its first stop in the Free State - touching in six towns including Sasolburg and Bloemfontein.