Axalta Supports German Student Racing Team's World Solar Challenge Entry

Axalta Supports German Student Racing Team’s World Solar Challenge Entry

This year, the team comprises 58 students from mechanical and electrical engineering, mechatronics, IT, sustainable development, architecture, economics, humanities, e-mobility and many other fields.

In an official ceremony on July 5, 2017, the SolarCar Team, made up of students from Bochum University of Applied Sciences, Germany, unveiled the design of their entry for the 2017 Bridgestone World Solar Challenge – the thyssenkrupp blue.cruiser – which takes place in Australia Oct. 8-15, 2017. The solar car was painted by Axalta Coating Systems at its Cromax Training Center in Bonn, Germany.

The thyssenkrupp blue.cruiser is the culmination of a 15-year research and development process. This year, the team comprises 58 students from mechanical and electrical engineering, mechatronics, IT, sustainable development, architecture, economics, humanities, e-mobility and many other fields.

To keep the overall weight of the car down, the thyssenkrupp blue.cruiser has a steel frame and a carbon fiber skin. Although the carbon is lightweight, it’s very porous, which makes it a challenge to paint and keep the paint weight to a minimum. The SolarCar Team supplied Axalta technicians with a sample of the car’s carbon fiber a few weeks in advance of the painting, which allowed the Axalta technical team to test different combinations of coating layers to determine what would provide the best coverage and produce the most lightweight finish.

The result was the application of a universal, high-quality, two-component polyester putty to compensate for the slightly uneven substrate and to ensure good adhesion. This was followed by an acrylic-based variable two-component high-solids filler for good isolation before finishing with the waterborne basecoat and fast air-dry two-component high solids clearcoat. For the project, Axalta leveraged its experience coating production cars made of carbon fiber for some of the world’s leading automotive manufacturers.

“Axalta is passionate about supporting students and community engagement, and this project is the ultimate combination of our product technology, our extensive motorsports experience and our commitment to sustainability, which was of particular importance to the team as they wanted to ensure sustainable materials were used,” says Dirk Sauer, technical service manager for Axalta in Germany, who oversaw the project. “The clearcoat we used, for example, dries extremely quickly at ambient temperatures, yet delivers an ultra-smooth surface, perfect for reducing drag.”

Axalta’s support of the SolarCar Team reflects the convergence of the company’s product technology, commitment to motorsports, university relations program and corporate social responsibility initiatives. Its participation in university racing teams enables Axalta to help students recognize not only the role of coatings in motorsports, but also the applied technology, engineering and innovation that go into the company’s products.

The SolarCar Team hopes to win the prize for best design, an award the university has secured for each of its six previous World Solar Challenge entries.

For more information on Axalta, visit

Article courtesy BodyShop Business.

You May Also Like

Congratulations To Guess The Car Winners

To win, you need to enter the contest and be randomly selected. Don’t miss your chance!

Despite us practically giving the answer to last week's puzzle within the puzzle itself (c'mon, four identification cards?), we have to admit that we were a bit surprised at the variety of incorrect guesses we received. That's what makes each week fun, however!

The CORRECT answer to this weeks's puzzle was the VW ID4 (See? We told you.), In the end, here are the 10 lucky winners who were randomly selected to receive a $10 McDonalds Gift Card.

March Madness Hits Pop Quiz Entries

Not a winner this time? This week’s contest is a new Guess The Car. Enter for free each week.

Were Things Better When They Were Simpler?  

Getting nostalgic about the good old days is easy, but many forget the struggles of the day.

Congratulations To March MindGames Masters

Those who figured out the answer to the puzzle from the image can see things others can’t.

For Crossword Players, Luck Is A Real Thing

The only way to win is to complete the puzzle. Not everyone can do it!

Other Posts

TechForce Announces Winners of Techs Rock Awards

Misael Rodriguez and Dustin Thomas are the grand-prize winners.

Pop Quizzers Were Lost In Translation This Week

We weren’t talking about ‘de bumper, we were talking about… read on.

Pop Quiz Answers Were Right, Despite What Computer Said

Luckily, 80 percent is the new 100 percent – well, the CURRENT 100 percent.

Techs Rock Candidate Profiles – Emerging Technologies

These techs prove emerging technology keeps the industry moving forward.