Mississippi State’s EcoCAR 3 team earned a top five finish at this year’s national competition, as well as high marks for project management.
The team placed fifth overall among 16 competitors recently in a two-stage contest held in Yuma, Ariz., and San Diego. Mississippi State took top honors for project management, including awards for Best Project Management Plan, Best Change Management Plan, Best Winter Workshop Project Status Presentation and Best Competition Project Status Presentation.
Sponsored by General Motors and the U.S. Department of Energy, the four-year competition, which began its third iteration in 2014, gives teams the chance to build a powerful, fuel efficient machine. The first year focused on architecture for a hybrid electric 2016 Chevrolet Camaro, while year two allowed teams to install parts in their competition vehicles according to their designs. Next year, teams will fine-tune their cars and the final year of the EcoCAR 3 competition will focus on marketing.
The MSU team’s design involves converting a snowmobile engine to run on E-85 fuel. Ultimately, the team hopes to increase the Camaro’s fuel economy to 60 miles-per-gallon without sacrificing its factory-bestowed 323 horse power.
The team, which includes 135 student members from more than a dozen majors, already has taken steps to start refining its vehicle. In year three, the team also plans to implement an innovative water injection system that would cool the engine’s combustion temperature while increasing power and fuel efficiency.
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