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by Tim Beissmann

A solar car designed and constructed by the University of New South Wales has broken the world record to become the fastest solar-powered vehicle.

According to an AAP report, the Sunswift IV – IVy for short – officially broke the Guinness World Record today by reaching 88km/h – eclipsing the previous record by 9km/h.

The speed tests were held at the HMAS Albatross naval base at Nowra, after IVy unofficially hit speeds of more than 100km/h in a race between Darwin and Adelaide in 2009.

To officially break the record, the vehicle’s operators were required to remove its 24.75kg lithium-polymer battery to ensure the vehicle was powered only by solar cells.

IVy cost around $280,000 and took 18 months to produce. It is 4.6m long, and 1.8m tall and wide. The body is made of carbon fibre and it has three wheels, also made of carbon fibre.

At its peak, it produces around 1.3kW of power – about the same as a vacuum cleaner or a microwave.




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