Posted on: May 9, 2017

Hundreds of Students to Compete in Nation’s Largest Solar-Powered Boat Competition

Metropolitan’s 15th annual Solar Cup™ gives high school students hands-on 

lessons in water resources, alternative energy development and sustainability 

WHAT: More than 700 students from 43 Southern California high school teams to race solar-powered boats they built over the past six months. The event culminates an education program sponsored by the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California through which students learn how to apply the math, science and engineering lessons they’ve learned in the classroom to the real world challenge of building the fastest solar-powered boat possible. After completing qualifying races, the boats compete in two 90-minute endurance heats around a 1.6 kilometer course and two 200-meter sprint race. 

Note: Student teams are putting the final touches on their boats and will test them in the water in various locations this weekend and next week. See attached sheet for a list of schools and call for testing details and to arrange coverage before May 19. 

WHEN: 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., May 19-21 

WHERE: Lake Skinner, Temecula Valley. Take Interstate 15 to Rancho California Road at Temecula, go 10 miles northeast to main gate, following signs to site. 

VISUALS: Each day of Solar Cup features students, decked out in team shirts and hats, working on, launching and racing solar-powered boats. Media boat is available to take reporters, photographers and television/cable crews onto lake for close-up footage. B-roll footage also is available via FTP site. Competition includes student-produced, 60-second water conservation videos and social media campaigns. 


Solar Cup began in 2002 with eight teams and about 80 students. In the 15 years since, it has grown into the nation’s largest solar-powered boat competition. Along the way, more than 10,000 young men and women have participated in Solar Cup competitions, where they’ve learned about water resource management, alternative energy development, and sustainability and been inspired to pursue careers in math, physics, engineering and environmental science. 

The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California is a state-established cooperative of 26 cities and water agencies serving nearly 19 million people in six counties. The district imports water from the Colorado River and Northern California to supplement local supplies, and helps its members to develop increased water conservation, recycling, storage and other resource-management programs.

2017 Solar Cup School List
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