Dartmouth & Georgia Tech Take First Place at Formula Hybrid Competition

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May 8, 2018

For the first time in 12 years of competition, Dartmouth Formula Racing (DFR) completed all events at Formula Hybrid including being the only car this year to finish all 44 laps of the Endurance Event. DFR also took first in the hybrid category for Engineering Design, Acceleration, and Autocross. The HyTech Racing team from Georgia Tech secured a first place finish in the electric category with high scores in Project Management, Design, and the Endurance Event.

Held from April 30–May 3 at the New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon, the competition drew 23 teams from across the US, as well as Canada, India and Turkey. During those four days, the undergraduate and graduate engineering student teams, along with the high-performance hybrid and electric race cars they built, endured all kinds of weather—wintery cold, spring rain, summer heat, and even a few thunderstorms.

Founded and run by Thayer School of Engineering at Dartmouth and similar to Formula SAE®, Formula Hybrid requires teams to adhere to strict safety standards but leaves them free to innovate on everything from the car’s frame to its powertrain.

DFR in the Autocross
Dartmouth Formula Racing competes in the Autocross Event at 2018 Formula Hybrid. (Photo by Kathryn Lapierre. See more photos.)

With their car weighing in at 672 pounds—almost 200 pounds lighter than last year—DFR drivers Leina McDermott '19 and Allie Stasior '20 logged 75 meter acceleration runs ranging from 6.5 to 5.1 seconds. "For perspective," said Raina White, Thayer Lab Instructor and DFR team advisor, "a few production cars warmed up the track with acceleration times of 4.7 for a Tesla and 5.2 for a Bolt." Princeton, with an all electric vehicle, logged the fastest Acceleration Event time at 4.9 seconds.

"Although not as fun to watch, but more exciting in my opinion," added White, "is that Dartmouth placed first in the design event, where industry experts evaluate the quality of their engineering work. Students are asked questions regarding their design decision making, supporting analysis and validation, and general understanding of the vehicle behaviors."

HyTech Racing on Endurance
Georgia Tech's HyTech Racing team completed 25 laps in the Endurance Event. (Photo by Kathryn Lapierre. See more photos.)

For many of the students, getting to see the cars they’ve built on the racetrack is only a small part of the Formula Hybrid experience.

“The thing that’s really cool to me, that I wouldn’t have expected, is the willingness of all the teams to help each other out," said Max Schwegman, a Princeton senior. "It’s a lot more of a ‘we’re all in this together’ atmosphere than I would have thought. The amount of camaraderie here is pretty remarkable."

In addition to getting a unique teamwork and hands-on learning experience, students can also find themselves landing a job. Top automotive companies sponsor the competition and many send recruiters.

Formula Hybrid challenges students to hone skills they will need in the real world, says Mike Chapman ’76 Th’77, a senior program manager at Intralinks in Waltham, Mass. Chapman served as a judge for the Project Management event, which requires students to present a project plan, including scope, goals, and change management plans. “It’s the real thing,” said Chapman. “I do program management for a living and this is the stuff we do every day, so after they leave here, these students can at least say they’re familiar with it.”

“[Formula Hybrid]’s not only job skills and personal skills, but it’s also seeing it all put together," said George Spearing, a first-year student at UVM. "It’s so much different than seeing it as a model on a computer. Everything you worked on is all together and working in front of you. It’s a beautiful experience. Seeing the application of so much that I’m learning in automotive, it’s actually solidified this as as a potential direction I want to go. There are so many different opportunities and fields, and then, wow, here’s a race car. I didn’t think of this as a direction to pursue before."

Formula Hybrid Trophies

2018 OFFICIAL RESULTS

(Scores and times available here.)

Hybrid Category Top Six

  1. Dartmouth (Dartmouth Formula Racing)
  2. RV College of Engineering (Ashwa Racing)
  3. Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT Hot Wheelz)
  4. Milwaukee School of Engineering (Mozee Motorsports)
  5. University of Victoria (UVic Hybrid)
  6. Lawrence Technological University (Blue Devil Motorsports)

Electric-Only Category Top Six

  1. Georgia Tech (HyTech Racing)
  2. Princeton University (Princeton Racing Electric)
  3. University of Vermont (UVM AERO)
  4. Lafayette College (Lafayette Motorsports)
  5. Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT Motorsports)
  6. Tufts University (Tufts Electric Racing)

2018 SPONSORED AWARDS

Test Equity / Keysight Technologies  Hit The Ground Running Prize

General Motors Spirit of Formula Hybrid Award (Trophy & $1,000.00) 

General Motors Best Engineered Propulsion System Award (Trophy & $1,000.00)

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles Innovation Award ($1,000.00)

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles Industrial Design Award ($1,000.00)

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles Gracious Professionalism Award ($1,000.00)

IEEE Engineering the Future Award (Trophy)

IEEE Excellence in EV Engineering Award (Trophy)

2018 Competition Photos & Videos

Formula Hybrid 2018

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