If you’re lucky, you may have witnessed a one-of-a-kind, sleek, red-and-white vehicle cruising by on the Stanford campus. Beyond its futuristic appearance, the real triumph of this car is that it runs on the sun – and it’s the latest race car representing the decades-long legacy of the Stanford Solar Car Project.

The Stanford Solar Car Project is a nonprofit, student-run organization that was founded in 1989 and is open to students in any field. It’s a multidisciplinary engineering effort from a team that often begins without any engineering experience. On a two-year cycle, the team builds a race car from the ground up, learning and applying mechanical, electrical, and computer engineering, while also figuring out how to plan and strategize for races.

Over the years, the cars made have participated in solar car races around the world – some of which have occurred in inhospitable conditions, like headwinds and cloudy days. But when conditions are right, this homemade, solar-powered speedster can reach speeds up to 70 miles an hour.