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Skip Navigation LinksDNREC : News : Delaware students invited to sign up for unique science and technology experience at annual Junior Solar Sprint on May 14

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Contact: Joanna Wilson, DNREC Public Affairs, 302-739-9902

Delaware students invited to sign up for unique science and technology experience at annual Junior Solar Sprint on May 14

DOVER (March 11, 2014) – Middle school students from across Delaware are invited to compete in the 20th annual Delaware Junior Solar Sprint (JSS) Competition on Wednesday, May 14 at Dover International Speedway. Sponsored by DNREC’s Division of Energy & Climate, the competition is open to all seventh and eighth graders attending public or private schools in Delaware.

Participants form teams of four to five students per car, with each team required to design, build and race 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 five fastest cars. Awards also will be given for most innovative design. 

Junior Solar Sprint (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.

“Students have an exciting opportunity to apply the scientific concepts they are learning in class to a real-world challenge with Junior Solar Sprint,” said 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 principles of science and math to get the fastest, most interesting, and best crafted vehicle possible,” she said.

For more information about the Delaware Junior Solar Sprint Competition, or to register for the event, please contact Crystal Nagyiski at More information also is available at

Delaware’s Junior Solar Sprint drew 80 students from around the state last year, and has hosted more than 1,700 Delaware middle schoolers since it began 20 years ago. The national 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.

Vol. 44, No. 62

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