Day 2 we woke up bright and early for our 6am team meeting, we discussed strategy for the day and had a quick breakfast before heading to the paddocks and starting work.
Our goals for the day were to get Sofie and Alice into tech inspection, so right at 8am we lined up with Sofie and got the tech inspection process started. There are 11 tech inspection stations for Hydrogen Prototype technical inspection: Weight, Horn, Timed Escape, Mechanical Systems, Hydrogen, Electrical Systems, Brake Test, Harness Test, Dimensions, Visibility, and Seat Belt. Sofie easily passed Weight, Timed Escape, Brake Test, Dimensions, Seat Belt, and Visibility. The horn was not installed yet, and when we got to Mechanical, we had some fixes we needed to do for Sofie’s steering wheel post before we could pass that station. We moved on to Hydrogen anyways, which is typically one of the most difficult stations to pass, and we passed our hydrogen leak test on the first go! Unfortunately we weren’t able to finish our inspection because the Shell Eco-marathon Opening Ceremonies were beginning and tech inspection was closing until 2pm.
We’ve had a very exciting summer designing and building our own custom hydrogen fuel cell in Dr. Secanell ‘s Energy Systems Design (ESD) Lab. This new fuel cell will allow our vehicles to run more efficiently and help the team expand it’s innovation in fuel cell technology. There are many parts that go into the cell and one of the essential components that has been completed is the humidifier. The humidifier is important to the system because it increases the cell’s overall efficiency, performance, and reliability. Without humidification, the membranes that are used to exchange protons become too dry and can result in poor function or failure of the fuel cell.
Like previous days, our team had an early start; at 6:00am our team took Sofie to line up for racing. Even though prototype races started at 9:30am, we lined up early to get near the front of the queue to ensure we would be one of the first to race. Despite our very early wake-up, there were a few teams in front of us in line. In line, we conditioned our fuel cell (similar to how an athlete warms up before a race or game, our fuel cell performs best after having been running for a bit) because it allows the membranes in the fuel cell to become hydrated.
Our team had another early start this morning we lined up Alice at tech inspection at 7:45am to get in at 8:00am, when it opened. We passed with flying colours for most of the stations like Brakes, Safety Belt, Visibility, and Horn. Only the Hydrogen station gave us issues (the start-up cycle wouldn’t complete) and so we left tech inspection with 9/10 of our checks completed. Our Fuel Cell team worked diligently all morning to fix the issue. With tech inspection permanently closing at 4:00pm today, our team knows how crucial it is to pass this hydrogen test.
The team got up bright and early to move both cars to the test track for the competition photos and attend the ecomarathon opening event.
Sofie’s final technical inspection will soon be underway. More to come
We had a massive number of people show up to our AGM! This was our most successful AGM ever with enough people to almost completely fill a big lecture hall in ETLC. Thank you to everybody who came. We hope you join our team and learn valuable skills while building the most fuel-efficient vehicles in the world.
It’s been a good couple of weeks in terms of videos. We released our promotional video for the 2016-17 year and in the same week, the University of Alberta featured us at the Celebrate Teaching, Learning, Research event in a video. We hope you enjoy them!
Here’s our 2016-17 promo video:
Interested in learning outside the classroom? Gaining hands-on engineering, business, community engagement, or education experience? What about changing the world and making friends while you’re at it?
EcoCar is hosting its Annual General Meeting to celebrate last year’s success, discuss the state of the team, and our vision for the future (of the team and of the world). Here, we will also welcome anyone interested in joining our team and introduce you to some of our team’s senior members and learn more about the team.
The team woke up early as usual and after their morning chores, headed to the park to finish the work started the previous day. The Mec E’s – Jerry, Chris P, Chris O and Kent – installed the hall-effect sensor and Nik hooked up his laptop to begin testing. After some fiddling with the code and the GUI, the go-pedal was pushed. An even louder VROOOOOOOOM! We didn’t know if it was possible, but the motor was going faster than yesterday! Hilariously, the noise was loud enough to scare Alex and Nathan quite a bit.