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Polar Racing: Formula E teams take on ice racing

Ever since its conception, one of Formula E’s main concerns has been raising awareness of climate change. Teams have not been strangers to this matter, and in this opportunity, Jaguar Racing and Venturi have taken their cars to the poles, driving on the ice. 

Jaguar Racing driver Nelson Piquet Jr. took on the challenge to drive the Jaguar I-Pace car in the Jaguar Land Rover Ice Academy, based in Arjeplog, Sweden. 

The test was carried out under a temperature of -40°C with a car identical to the ones used at the Jaguar I-Pace eTrophy.

One of the aims the test had was to prove how effective the car’s thermal management system was in said climate circumstances. 

The Brazilian drove the car on a frozen lake and said after his experience: “Driving it on the frozen lakes, and feeling the performance in such extreme conditions, is something I will not forget for a while”. 

But Jaguar were not the only team to test electric vehicles in the ice. Venturi recently tested their “Venturi Antarctica”, a vehicle designed to endure the South Pole’s extreme weather conditions, as it will serve for transportation purposes for the scientists who reside in Antarctica. 

The idea and creation of the Antarctica, came after Prince Albert II of Monaco’s visit to the South Pole, where there was a lack of environmentally-friendly vehicles for the researchers and scientists to use. This led to Monaco-based manufacturer Venturi to be tasked with the creation of a vehicle of the desired characteristics, which would provide a solution for the Antarctica residents. 

This polar exploration vehicle, which is the first electrically-powered of its kind, endured tests at Auron, a ski resort in France, where aspects like on-board installations, the management of energy and batteries, lighting and deicing functions, parking, and charging were tested for a number of days. 

Testing continued in a climate chamber in Modena, Italy, preparing the Antarctica for the -50°C temperatures it will withstand in the future. 

In March, the testing will be resumed in Telegraph Creek, British Columbia, Canada, where the climate conditions resemble the ones this vehicle will encounter in the South Pole. This testing will also be part of the ‘Venturi Global Challenges’. 

Once the tests in Canada are concluded, the vehicle will be shipped to Antarctica, as Venturi have stated in a press release. 

 

Photo by Jaguar Racing Media. 

Andrea Perilli

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