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CalSol is on a mission to design, build, test, and race the world’s fastest and most solar-efficient vehicles. A team of undergraduate students from the University of California, Berkeley, CalSol was founded in 1990, and since then, they have built nine solar-powered vehicles. With multiple car companies transitioning to completely electric or solar vehicles, they’re paving the road for a sustainable future, and they’ll be doing it with Cadence CFD solutions.
CalSol’s eighth-generation vehicle, Zephyr, was first raced in 2014. Its best performance was during the 2018 Formula Sun Grand Prix, where it finished first. Its most recent race was at Kansas’ American Solar Challenge in the summer of 2022, where it placed fourth. Zephyr has about 280 solar cells on its solar ray and 420 lithium-ion cells in its battery pack. It has an aluminum space-frame chassis with a carbon fiber shell.
This shell, as said by CalSol’s mechanical lead, Yusuf Abubakr, is “hands-down the most important part of any solar car design.” Verifying the shell’s aerodynamic performance and meshing is the most important part of the FEA and CFD process. The previous softwares used by CalSol’s team have had limited meshing capabilities, but not Cadence’s meshing solutions. Cadence CFD saves time and improves fidelity with excellent quality mesh generation, and offers ease of interface with any simulation workflow.
“Designed with Cadence” is a series of videos that showcases creative products and technologies that are accelerating industry innovation using Cadence tools and solutions. Learn more about how CalSol uses Cadence products to stay ahead of the competition.
For more Designed with Cadence videos, check out the Cadence website and YouTube channel.