Engineers from all generations who have built or raced vehicles and bikes in Imperial's racing teams gathered on 15 February 2014.
The group of over 70 alumni, students and staff met to network, celebrate their achievements and catch up on the latest news from today’s student engineers.
Since 2000, Imperial has formed interdisciplinary teams of undergraduate students who design, make, test and race racing cars and bikes [see sidebar for full list]. Since 2011 the focus has been on low and zero emission vehicles under the Imperial Racing Green banner. These teams have won a number of races and accolades, most recently claiming first place in the Class 2 Design category at Formula Student, the flagship international race series organised by the Institute of Mechanical Engineers.
The reunion on the South Kensington Campus brought racing teams past and present together for the first time. Among guests were alumni working at Mercedes, Rolls Royce and Jaguar.
The group caught up on the latest news on current students’ projects; the battery electric vehicle being built by Imperial Racing Green called EV2, and the all-electric superbike being created by the IC+ team.
Students delivered technical presentations about their work, speaking about the electronic systems they are developing to control the cars, their methods to thermally manage the batteries to improve performance, and their improvements to the aerodynamics of the cars. Updates from the pit garage included the news that the EV2, which the team hope to enter into the 2014 Formula Student race, reached an important milestone last week with its first successful test on a dynamometer, a ”rolling road” for testing a car’s performance.
Dr Gregory Offer is the Academic Project Manager of Imperial Racing Green, and was the driving force behind the reunion. He said, “It was fantastic to bring together everyone who has been involved in the racing teams over the past 14 years. The room had a palpable buzz and I’m looking forward to building on the many connections that were made on the day. Hopefully it will translate into opportunities for current undergraduates, and ultimately future racing wins!”
Martin Theodorou (Mechanical Engineering) is the current Team Principle for EV2. “I spent most of the day chatting with previous team members and finding out about their experiences” he says. “I got endless advice, and it was reassuring because lots of people I met were impressed by how far along the process we were at this point in the year.”
Building on the success of Saturday’s event, the group will continue to develop links with alumni by following up on the offers of advice and assistance and pursing potential sponsorship opportunities.
See a slideshow of images from the day below.
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