Solar Vehicle Team preps for summer competition, displays car at local events

BOONE—Appalachian State University's Solar Vehicle Team (SVT) will be competing in the Formula Sun Grand Prix (FSGP) July 22-28 at the Pittsburgh International Race Complex in Wampum, Penn.

Team Sunergy is working around the clock to ensure Apperion, the 2016 solar vehicle, is ready for the race. The team, led by advisors Dr. Jeremy Ferrell, Christopher Tolbert and Brad Johnson, consists of more than 20 graduate and undergraduate students majoring in a variety of programs. Over the last year, the team has built Apperion from the ground up using sustainable techniques to ensure vehicle reliability under all driving conditions.

Solar_vehicle_teamAssistant Project Director Duvey Rudow said the Appalachian team is different in that their commitment is to sustainability. "Other teams see the race as an engineering challenge," he said. "We see it as an opportunity to promote sustainability. We have been working for two years to get this project off the ground so we are very excited for the opportunity to compete against the other amazing teams."

The FSGP is an international track race that evaluates vehicles through time trials, slalom, water-soaked stopping and more.

Appalachian's SVT is the only North Carolina team in the competition and one of only two teams in the South, as they are one of the only schools in the region to have a solar team. This is the first time a North Carolina solar team will compete in this race.

Once Apperion qualifies, the team will participate in the American Solar Challenge, a grueling 1,800-mile road race from Eastern Ohio to the Black Hills of South Dakota.

Team Sunergy will be showcasing Apperion over the next several weeks at local events while raising funds for the upcoming trip. All members of the community are invited to learn more about Apperion and support the team.

Upcoming Events:
Friday, July 15
Team Sunergy at Music Fest 'n Sugar Grove
The team travels to Pittsburg to begin the competition on July 21. To learn more, visit

About the Appalachian State University Solar Vehicle Team

The Solar Vehicle Team, Team Sunergy, is a joint venture between the Department of Sustainable Technology and the Built Environment in the College of Fine and Applied Arts and the Department of Physics in the College of Arts and Sciences. The team focuses on advancing the technology and application of sustainable transportation while inspiring current and future generations to strive towards a more sustainable future. To learn more, visit

Published: Jul 4, 2016 12:52pm