Cal Poly Human Powered Vehicle Runs Strong in ASME Competition
June 06, 2012
Cal Poly won first place in design and placed second overall at the 2012 ASME Human Powered Vehicle Challenge held May 4-6 at the Miller Motorsports Park in Tooele, Utah.
When final results were tallied, Cal Poly was bested by 1/100th of a point by Missouri University of Science and Technology.
The design event, which contributed the largest portion (40%) to the contestants' overall scores, was judged in six major areas: design, innovation, analysis, testing, safety and aesthetics.
"It is the one part of the competition where luck doesn't play a part," said George Leone, technical adviser for the team.
"Cal Poly won the design phase with an innovative fiber-over-foam frame to minimize weight, and a fabrication method that increased the vehicle's strength by 30 percent," said Leone. "Another impressive feature was the students' integration of solar panels into the carbon chassis and carbon/Kevlar fairing - a cover for rider protection and aerodynamics - to charge the iPhone navigation system."
Team members included mechanical engineering students Cody Anderson, Peter Aumann, Matt Baker, Cameron Christenson, Katie Hahn, Trent Hellman, Tim Hoekstra, Chris Hunt, Sam Juday, Alex Powers, Lauren Romero, Josh Smith, Samantha Weiner and Zack Yasuda; third-year aero student Will Hilgenberg; computer science graduate student Kimberly Patterson; and history student Elizabeth Metelak. Kim Shollenberger was faculty adviser.
Competing in the men's and women's speed events, which represented a combined 30 percent of the overall score, Cal Poly placed second to Missouri S&T in both races. In the 2-1/2-hour endurance race, which accounted for another 30 percent, Cal Poly came in third, behind Missouri S&T and Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology - but winning the "Best Crash" award in the process.
"The bike went off course over a berm," said Leone, "and the team dragged it back onto the course - with the rider still inside. The fairing was that tough, and they had full confidence in its structure. They flipped it upright, and the rider rode back into the race.
"When they scored the overall results, Missouri S&T beat us 86 to 85.99 - a competition well fought right to the finish."
ASME, founded as the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, promotes the art, science, and practice of multidisciplinary engineering and allied sciences around the globe. ASME's international Human Powered Vehicle Challenge provides an opportunity for graduate and undergraduate students to demonstrate the application of sound engineering design principles in the development of sustainable and practical transportation alternatives.