Τρίτη, 19 Απριλίου 2011

Ultra-Efficient Racer Gets 2,564.8 MPG

Shell Eco-marathon Universite Laval


For the third year in a row, students at Université Laval have built one of the most fuel-efficient cars on the planet, a slick three-wheeler that gets an amazing 2,564.8 mpg.
Of course, the car averages 15 mph and isn't very comfortable, but speed and practicality are not paramount at the Shell Eco-marathon. Squeezing every possible inch from a gallon of fuel is the only objective, and on that measure the Alerion Supermileage team trounced all challengers. Not only did the team from Quebec spank the second-place finishers by 766.1 mpg, its car (pictured) topped last year's performance by 77 mpg.
"With more teams participating this year, there are a lot of really smart and innovative fuel-efficient ideas to be seen," team manager Anthony Bernier said in a statement. "We put a lot of time and hard work into our vehicle and are very proud of how we did."
Photo: Shell
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Shell Eco-marathon Louisiana Technical University Roadster

The Eco-marathon, which wrapped up Sunday, is a race, of sorts. The only goal is doing 10 laps around a Houston park at an average speed of 15 mph while consuming the teeniest, tiniest amount of energy possible.
The cars run on everything from gasoline to ethanol to biodiesel, and this year Shell introduced an "e-mobility" category for battery electric, solar and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles.
Competition is divided into two categories. Alerion Supermileage is typical of the prototype class, which features slick, futuristic three-wheelers. The urban challenge class is for cars that look a bit more conventional. Conventional being relative, of course.
Top honors in the urban challenge division went to the crew from Louisiana Technical University. It's classic hot-rod-inspired Roadster (pictured above) achieved 646.7 mpg and took home the Design Award for best-looking car.
Photo: Shell

Shell Eco-marathon Cicero North Syracuse High School

Before the cars compete, they have to pass tech inspection to ensure they comply with the rules. Nick Pietricola of Cicero North Syracuse High School waits patiently for the judges to sign off on the team's hydrogen fuel cell vehicle, Clean Green Machine on Friday. It took first place in the hydrogen fuel cell category, achieving 44.1 miles per kilowatt-hour.
Photo: Shell

Shell Eco-marathon Wawasee High School

It doesn't matter if its Formula 1 or a supermileage race — the pits are always a busy place just before a race. Adam Glanden and Scot Hall of Wawasee High School in Syracuse, Indiana, prepare Diesel Weasel, their diesel-powered racer, for the start of competition on Saturday. The car took top honors in the diesel division with 574.8 mpg.
Photo: Shell

Shell Eco-marathon Louisiana Tech B'Vetti B

The competition drew 62 teams from as far away as Alaska. Some entered more than one car, which explains why there were 52 prototype vehicles and 12 urban-challenge vehicles.
Louisiana Tech is among the teams running two cars. Here, Sam Wade prepares the team's second car, B'Vetti B, for the start of tech inspection on Friday. The car achieved 101.1 mpg.
Photo: Shell

Shell Eco-marathon Drexel University

Drexel University students Pramod Abicnandani and Andrey Shum prep Green Dragon, the team's solar car, for the start of the race Saturday. The car took first place in the solar division, achieving 89.7 miles per kilowatt-hour.
Photo: Shell

Shell Eco-marathon Alerion Supermileage

The Alerion Supermileage team arrived from Quebec to discover the engine wasn't running properly.
"Our car was ready early this morning to go for the test runs, but they were delayed due to the rain," team member Philippe Bouchard said Friday. "Now our engine isn't running properly, so we missed our second chance to get on the road. This is especially a problem because we have a brand new pilot (driver)."

The engine finally ran like a charm, but the team had to deal with a drivechain malfunction during Sunday's competition. Once it sorted that problem, the car achieved 2,197 mpg on its first run. The team — Philippe Bouchard, Marc-Andre Nadeau and Louis-David Coulombe — tweaked the engine control unit and hit 2,557 mpg. The third run was good for 2,564.8 mpg and the $5,000 first place prize.
Photo: Shell

Shell Eco-marathon Loyola Marymount University

The Loyola Marymount University team takes its gasoline-powered prototype, Gen 3.2, through tech inspection. The car achieved 558 mpg in competition.
Photo: Shell

Shell Eco-marathon University of California-Berkeley

The University of California-Berkeley Super Mileage Vehicle team added the flames during the drive to Houston.
Photo: Shell

Shell Eco-marathon olytechnic Institute of NYU

Concept Zero, which looks like it could have been designed by Lamborghini, was damaged when some ham-handed mover got rough with the shipping crate. It wasn't terribly serious — bashed headlights, which are required in the urban challenge division, were the worst of it. But the team from Polytechnic Institute of NYU was scrambling before tech inspection.
"We even had to go buy new wires. It was crazy," said driver Ankur Vishwakarma.
Once the car hit the track, it achieved 113 mpg during its best run. Not enough for a big prize, but the team did go home with the Perseverance in the Face of Adversity Award.
Photo: Shell

Shell Eco-marathon 14

The "down to the wire" award has to go to the team from the University of Alaska Fairbanks, which didn't start building its car until two weeks before the race. Although the team knew about the race and wanted to attend, it didn't think it would have the cash to build the car and make the long haul to Houston. When funding finally came through, it was all hands on deck to get the EV built in time.
"A lot of other people thought it couldn't be done," driver Craig McKenzie said. "All you need is dedication and surviving without sleep. If you can do that, then you can do anything."
It wasn't enough that they finished the car the morning everyone flew to Houston. No, they had to check the car as baggage, which meant disassembling it in Alaska, then reassembling it in Houston.
"We got on the plane on Wednesday and arrived here in Houston on Thursday and put it together,” McKenzie said.
It may not look like much, but the funky little EV got 53 miles per kilowatt-hour.
McKenzie and teammate Allan Spangler working on the car in the pits Saturday.
Photos: Shell

Shell Eco-marathon St. Paul's School

Ryan Durr at the wheel of Clawzz, the car entered by St. Paul's School of Covington, Louisiana. The car features a 6-horsepower diesel engine burning biofuel. It was good for 179 mpg.
Photo: Shell

Shell Eco-marathon Mater Dei High School

Second place in the prototype class went to the kids from Mater Dei High School in Evansville, Indiana. Their car, Indy, achieved 1,798.7 mpg during its best run. That's Quinn Schroeder at the wheel during a practice run.
The Mater Dei kids are an ambitious lot — they entered four cars in this year's event. That's Ryan Wannemueller at the wheel of George, which looks like a modern take on the Peel 50 microcar. George returned 587 mpg during its best run.
Photos: Shell

Shell Eco-marathon  James B. Dudley High School

"Go big or go home" might be the team motto of the kids from James B. Dudley High School in Greensboro, South Carolina. Los Bon Dinh hits the track in the team's EV, Panther 2.

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