This is an excerpt from EERE Network News, a weekly electronic newsletter.
University of Waterloo wins First Year of Challenge X
The University of Waterloo is the winner of the first-year competition for "Challenge X: Crossover to Sustainability," a three-year contest to reengineer a Chevrolet Equinox with the goal of improving fuel economy and reducing emissions while maintaining performance and safety. Challenge X closely mirrors real-world automotive engineering processes, so the first year of the competition, which concluded in early June, emphasized vehicle simulation, powertrain testing, and the engineering trade-offs that occur in the early stages of vehicle design. The Waterloo team's winning propulsion system design combines a fuel cell with a nickel-metal hydride battery. The University of Akron took second place with a parallel hybrid design that pairs an electric motor with a biodiesel-fueled Volkswagen diesel engine, and Ohio State University came in third with a similar design based on a Fiat diesel engine.
DOE and the General Motors Corporation (GM) are the lead sponsors for Challenge X, in which 17 teams of North American engineering students are participating. Because all of the teams met the minimum requirements for last week's design competition, each team was handed the keys to a new 2005 Chevrolet Equinox. The teams will spend the next two years converting the vehicles to match their design plans. See the GM press release and see the complete first-year results on the Challenge X Web site.