Competition Provides Students with Real-World Engineering Experience

Project Overview
Impact: Real-world engineering experience for students.
Students build vehicles and gain skills through EcoCAR 2 initiative.
Locations: Across North America
Partners: Argonne National Laboratory
EERE Investment: $1 million
Clean Energy Sector: Sustainable transportationPDF

Fifteen universities across North America are participating in EcoCAR 2—EERE’s latest advanced vehicle technology competition (AVTC). Managed by Argonne National Laboratory, EcoCAR 2 is a three-year engineering competition where graduate and undergraduate students work with their universities’ teams to construct and demonstrate vehicles that reduce fuel consumption, greenhouse gas emissions, and other harmful emissions relative to conventional gasoline vehicles, while still maintaining consumer acceptance in the areas of performance, utility, and safety. The teams, which include students with backgrounds in engineering, business, and information technology, must also develop business, marketing, and education strategies for their vehicles. Students will gain hands-on experience designing and building these advanced vehicles, using the same hardware and software tools as professional vehicle manufacturing engineers. The competition’s 30 national sponsors also provide expert guidance and mentoring, as well as access to compo­nents and systems that might otherwise be unavailable or too expensive. Since EERE-supported AVTCs began in 1988, more than 16,500 students have graduated, with 75% of them going on to work in the automotive industry all over the world. The following universities have formed teams and are competing in EcoCAR2:

  • Cal State, Los Angeles – California
  • Colorado State – Colorado
  • Embry-Riddle – Florida
  • Mississippi State – Mississippi
  • North Carolina State University – North Carolina
  • Ohio State University – Ohio
  • Penn State University – Pennsylvania
  • Purdue University – Indiana
  • Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology – Indiana
  • University of Tennessee, Knoxville – Tennessee
  • University of Victoria – Canada
  • University of Washington – Washington
  • University of Waterloo – Canada
  • Virginia Tech – Virginia
  • Wayne State University – Michigan

The Vehicle Technologies Office (VTO) develops and deploys efficient and environmentally friendly highway transportation technologies that will enable America to use less petroleum. These technologies will provide Americans with greater freedom of mobility and energy security, while lowering costs and reducing impacts on the environment.

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