GM and DOE look to engineering students for answers

Engineering students around the country will be able to apply their education to a real-world challenge. The EcoCAR challenge, a contest sponsored by General Motors and the Dept. of Energy, will offer students the opportunity to design a car that gets maximum fuel economy and minimal emissions.

12/21/2007



Engineering students around the country will be able to apply their education to a real-world challenge. The EcoCAR challenge, a contest sponsored by General Motors and the Dept. of Energy, will offer students the opportunity to design a car that gets maximum fuel economy and minimal emissions. The students’ requirements include designing and building advanced propulsion solutions that emulate vehicle categories from the California Air Resources Board (CARB) zero emissions vehicle requirements. The alternative technologies include electric hybrids, fuel cells, bio-fuels, lightweight materials, and high-tech aerodynamics.

The EcoCAR challenge launches in the 2008-2009 academic year as a three-year program with GM, who provides production vehicles, parts, seed money, technical mentoring and operational support; while the DOE and the Argonne National Laboratory research facility will provide competition management, team evaluation, and technical support. The student team will develop their vehicle designs using GM’s modeling simulation process in the first year. In the second and third years, the team will build the vehicle and continue to refine, test, and improve vehicle operation. In April 2008, the judges will choose 16 finalists to participate in the contest.

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