Mysuru: The students of Department of Mechanical Engineering, Vidyavardhaka College of Engineering (VVCE), Mysuru, have designed and developed a Formula Hybrid Car.
Fourteen budding automobile aficionados, who began their journey in early March 2017 as Team MECHATRON, an inter-disciplinary team with 12 students from Mechanical Engineering, one student from Computer Science and Engineering and one student from Electronics and Communication Engineering, took on the challenging project.
The students who involved in the development of this hybrid vehicle worked with the facilities provided by the College Department. The institution provided a financial assistance of up to Rs. 4 lakh. According to Jeffin Steve and Suraj K. Yadav, leaders of MECHATRON, the car was designed from scratch.
The team had to comprehend advanced software to design certain components of the car. It took about 6 months to design the car and about 4 months to manufacture it. The team had to go through a lot of textbooks and online videos just to get an idea about how to start with the project.
The team first built a parallel hybrid system which is powered by a petrol engine and an electric motor. Delving deeper into specifications, the car is powered by a 306 CC Briggs and Stratton engine and a 2 KW Brushless Direct Current Motor (BLDC) powered by a 52Ah Lithium Ion battery.
The hybrid system has been designed in such a way that the driver can choose the mode of propulsion. This means that the car can be driven either by petrol engine or by electric motor. This system also charges the primary batteries when the car is driven by petrol engine.
The car uses a Continuous Variable Transmission (CVT) system for the convenience of driving. This car also has a feature where the driver can check certain performance parameters through mobile via Bluetooth.
The car uses a space frame chassis with independent suspension. Stopping power comes from four disc brakes connected in an ‘X split’ configuration. Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM) uprights were modified to accommodate the brakes and the suspension.
For safety, the car uses a standard impact attenuator, 5-point harness system, 3 kill switches and a 1.5-mm thick firewall to protect the driver in case of a fire. The whole car was designed based on the rules and regulations set by Formula Society of Automotive Engineers (FSAE).
The team participated in Hybrid Vehicle Challenge organised by Imperial Society of Innovative Engineers (ISIE- HVC 2018). The competition consisted three main rounds. Round 1 was the pre-virtuals where the team scored an All India Rank 5.
Round 2 was the Virtual Round, an elimination round where the team scored an All India Rank 14. The last round, the Dynamic Event, which was held at Buddh International Circuit, Greater Noida, the team successfully cleared the technical Inspection and various other events.
VVCE Principal Dr. B. Sadashive Gowda, Head of the Mechanical Engineering Department Dr. L. J. Sudev, team guide Prof. S. Madhusudhan, VVCE President Gundappa Gowda, Secretary P. Vishwanath and Treasurer S.N. Lakshminarayana have lauded the team for its achievement.
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