A&M Engineering Students Get Ready For Fast, Green Competition

By: Shane McAuliffe Email
By: Shane McAuliffe Email

It sounds like, looks like, and drives like a formula racing car. And, in a sense, that's exactly what it is. However, this race car is different. It's been built entirely by Texas A&M Engineering students and it's a hybrid.

"For the last two weeks, we've been working 50 to 60 hours a week on top of our school work on this project," said Chad Kuboviak.

Kuboviak is the crew chief for the Texas A&M Racing Team and he knows the E85 Electric Hybrid inside and out. From the 250cc engine to the 12 Dewalt Drill batteries helping run the car, it's a project close to his heart.

"Out of all the senior design projects this is by far the most work, but it's definitely the most fun and when else do you get to build a race car with someone else's money," joked Kuboviak.

With several students working on the project, Patrick Duffy in one of the few lucky ones who actually gets to drive the race car.

"I guess the closest thing you can compare it too is like riding a roller coaster. Except for you are in charge of where it goes. The speed and the tight turns and the feeling of the G-Force against you is just exhilarating, it's just a blast to drive," said Duffy.

And while it's a lot fun, improving hybrid technology is one of the team's main goals.

"We're moving with technology, trying to keep up with the times instead of having a normal race car," said Duffy.

The Texas A&M Racing Team will compete in the 2009 Formula Hybrid Competition next week in New Hampshire. They'll be going up against 30 teams from all over the world, some from as far away as Russia.

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