Tuesday, April 15th, provided just the kind of warm, sunny weather appropriate for the unveiling of Cal State L.A.'s third solar-powered electric vehicle, the Solar Eagle III. The unveiling, dubbed "Roll-Out Rally" by the University Community, got underway at high noon, officially kicking off Cal State L.A.'s celebration of Earth Week 1997.
An estimated 2,000 people were present in Cal State L.A.'s Jesse Owens Stadium for the festivities. Master of Ceremonies, eight-time Emmy Award winning KABC talk radio personality, Mario Machado, presided over the event. Guests of honor included the president of Cal State L.A., James Rosser; Dr. Raymond Landis, the Dean of the School of Engineering and Technology; Sharon Morris, Deputy Mayor of Los Angeles; Lillian Kawasaki, General Manager of Environmental Affairs for the City of Los Angeles; Dick Roberto, Cal State L.A. Mechanical Engineering professor and faculty advisor for the Solar Eagle III project; and Kathleen Hansen, student representative of Team Solar Eagle III.
The event was part Roll-Out and part Homecoming as Cal State L.A.'s first two solar-powered electric vehicles, the Solar Eagle and the Solar Eagle II, were present to pass on their legacy to the Solar Eagle III. It wasn't all warm and fuzzy, however! The friendly, competitive spirit got the best of all three teams, and the rally ended in an exciting race between the three world-class race cars. Of course, the Solar Eagle III crossed the finish line first, but the first two Solar Eagles kept it close with a few nose-to-nose, nail-biting moments on the straight-aways.
The festivities closed with a luncheon convened to thank the Corporate Sponsors of the Solar Eagle III, as well as bid the team good luck at Sunrayce '97.
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