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San Diego High Schools Compete In Solar Cup

San Diego High Schools Compete In Solar Cup
Two San Diego High School teams will compete in a solar-powered boat competition for the first time. The schools get started on the Solar Cup Saturday.

Two San Diego High School teams will compete in a solar-powered boat competition for the first time. The schools get started on the Solar Cup Saturday.

Teams from 36 Southern California high schools build and race 16-foot, one-person solar-powered boats.

The Solar Cup is a seven-month program sponsored by the Metropolitan Water District and its member public water agencies including the San Diego County Water Authority.

Scripps Ranch High School and the School of Science and Technology each get $4,000 from the water authority and local companies to equip the boats with solar panels and other materials.

Rob Hallwachs with the Metropolitian Water District says the event is more than a race for the students.

"Learning teamwork and problem solving," Hallwachs said. "They have hands-on application of their textbook lessons in science, math and physics."

He says the students and their teachers also attend technical workshops over the next seven months before they race the boats in May at Lake Skinner in Temecula.

The San Diego County high schools get started Saturday when they're given tool chests and kits of pre-cut marine-grade plywood to assemble the boats.