20 Years of Lancaster's E-Racing

7 January 2019 11:18
E racing car
E-Racing Car

What is Lancaster e-racing?

Lancaster e-racing is a team of 15 MEng students of various disciplines including: Mechanical, Electrical and Mechatronics; studying at Lancaster. As part of our degree scheme, we are undertaking a group project for our fourth year with the goal to design and manufacture a single seat, open wheel race car to compete at the Formula Student UK event at Silverstone in July. The project contributes towards our Master's of Engineering qualifications and will be a crucial stepping stone for us to pursue exciting careers in industry.

Formula Student UK

FSUK is an event run by the IMechE where students from over 120 universities across the world compete to design and build a formula style race car and test them against each other in several dynamic and static events held at the Silverstone race circuit. The event provides ideal knowledge and training to help develop the next generation of world-class engineers.

Our team’s history and Objectives for this year

This year marks the 20th anniversary of Lancaster University’s involvement with Formula Student, and as such provides us with extra incentive to perform well. With the growth of the University engineering department and its increasing facilities and capabilities, the team has been improving the performance of the car each year since. In 2016, the decision was made to switch to the alternative fuel class by designing an electric vehicle in order to try and stay at the forefront of cutting edge technology and keep a competitive advantage over our rivals. The switch to electric power is also in line with the Universities beliefs and values of ‘green’ technology.

For the previous two years since the team switched to an electric vehicle, the car remained stationary at Silverstone. Hence, our main objective for this year is to get a race car that moves under its own power consistently. To combat this issue, we have recruited more electrical engineering students than were in previous years’ teams in the hopes that their expertise will help us to achieve our goal. The advantage of having more electrical engineers also allows us to have our mechanically focussed team members able to work together to ensure that the car is mechanically sound. This will enable us to make good design choices that could give our car a competitive edge at the race event.

This year we have the added objective of completely redesigning the car from the ground up and the challenge of manufacturing from all brand new components. Thus, all parts of the car will need to be purchased brand new, requiring much support as our relatively small budget we receive will not go far enough to cover the cost of the car.

At the time of writing this, we have managed to fix the issue of last year’s car and have it moving under its own power. This will be a vital stepping stone to having our own car that can compete in all of the dynamic events. So despite the initial setbacks, we are confident that we can have a competing car in time for Silverstone!

If any alumni would be interested in supporting the project or would like any further information, please contact Sami Weyers - s.weyers@lancaster.ac.uk

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