We have already received some great entries for the DIY Eco-tech contest such as this solar-powered hydrofoil
sent in by reader Terrence Breitsameter for the Solar Energy Society at Marquette University. Not only did they build this solar-powered boat, they race it competitively as well. In order to preserve the secrets of the trade (and prevent his competition from getting a heads up), Terrance wasn't able to give out all of the information about the boat, but we were able to pry some details from him. The hydrofoil is a
carbon-fiber construction with commercially available parts that the team customized. Inside the
frame lies a hotswapable drivetrain that they can change in under 5 minutes to help them switch between sprints and endurance races. By using hand-made solar panels and hand-customized solar cells, they are able to have their lightweight hydrofoil lift up and float on top the water for speeds of up to 20 mph, hopefully leaving the competition in their mist.
Although Terrance states that the hydrofoil is used solely for competition, we know a secret agent vehicle when we see one. If you have a double super secret eco-tech innovation you would like to share, please send it to us at: contest [at] treehugger [dot] com by September 15th for your shot at a Voltaic Systems solar backpack, a two year subscription to MAKE Magazine, and a limited edition MAKE T-shirt.
Note - The original version of this post attributed the hydrofoil solely to Terrance. That is incorrect. Terrance himself described the boat as a team effort which he was only a part of. We apologize for any confusion this may have caused.