By: F. Rabbat
On September the 9th the car, Lion II, and every member of Lion Racing BR travelled to Anápolis, a small town in the state of Goiás, to test our vehicle.
CAOA, one of our sponsors, had kindly offered its testing track in its factory for us to test our vehicle.
The team spent long hours working on the car from the 9th to the 12th working 8 to 9 hours a day.
The results obtained provided us vital insight on the car’s performance, indicating what should be done to improve our vehicle overall.
Following the trip several alterations were made to improve the car as a whole.
Following the graduation of most of last year’s Greenpower group, Freddy Rabbat and Carlos Andrade worked together to ensure that this extra-curricular project developed further.
By April 2017, a joint effort from both of these students had enabled them to create the Lion Racing BR team, composed of 12 dedicated pupils from Form 5 up to Upper 6.
The Greenpower Project was started in 1999 with the objective to encourage young students to encourage their interest in engineering and develop their collaboration and problem solving skills, as well as emphasizing the importance of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) subjects in solving sustainability problems that society is currently facing. The main objective of the challenge is for teams of students to design, build and race their own electric powered race car.
Today, Greenpower works with more than 500 schools and over 8000 students across 3 continents.
Building from the experience acquired in the previous year, Freddy Rabbat adopted a new stance towards the Greenpower competition, with the aim of not only participating in the international race but of hopefully winning it.
One of the team’s main priorities was to seek for sponsorships and partnerships in the search for funding and counseling. Our success was surprising,, acquiring over 18 partnerships.
Companies such as EDAG and CAOA proved vital for the project, providing access to mechanical tools and software crucial for the design and production of our electric vehicle.
The team dedicated over 800 man hours towards the design and construction process of the vehicle, designing over 5 different models using CAD, before finally be satisfied.
Following the CAD design, our “virtual vehicle” was passed through a series of digital tests, which evaluated its drag effect and chassis distortions .
The results were extremely positive however, some changes had to be made to improve the overall design.
By August the 1st the team finalized the car’s design and initialized the construction process.
With a design and a goal, the construction process became extremely simple. Under the guidance of professionals the 12 students began to structure the vehicle. Some of the materials were provided by partners, others were bought the with sponsorship fund.
In addition, some of the more sophisticated parts of the car, such as its body work, were modeled by tertiary parties, as the group did not have access to these massive machines. By 1st of September the car was finally complete and the team entered the testing phase.
Race Day—Rockingham, UK
Following the Anápolis trip the team separated into two parts, with most of the group working on the improvements of the car and only a few organizing and planning the UK trip.
Thankfully, DHL formed a partnership with Lion Racing BR and promised to transport our vehicle free of cost.
With all alterations finished by the 29th of September the vehicle was collected by the logistics company and sent off to the UK. On the 5th of October the team embarked on the last phase of their project.
Upon arriving in London on the 6th we discovered that our car had not arrived and was currently in Paris. Considering that the competition would begin on the 7th, the entire team panicked.
However, a joint effort from both team leaders, Freddy and Carlos, ensured that the vehicle arrived on October the 7th around 3 hours before Saturday’s practice race.
Anxiously the team awaited for the car’s arrival, and at 3pm the Lion II finally arrived. The hours that followed were rushed and exhausting as the team worked around the clock to ensure that the vehicle got onto the track. The results obtained from the practice race were promising and we were looking forward for tomorrow’s competition.
The next day followed a similar pace, and by 1pm the car was on the track. The race was memorable and Lion II, piloted by Felipe Rosset, achieved an honorable position in the international race.
Once the race reached its end the team headed off to the prize giving, where the greatest surprise of all awaited us. As the Greenpower administration read off each of the prizes, one by one, they finally called the Lion Racing BR team to receive one of the best commendations possible. We were awarded the best engineering project overall, ranking first against hundreds of competitors
Following the race, the team headed to London to rest and enjoy the last 4 days of their trip and half term.
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