Hybridizing Alien Spaceships with PSU

Written By: Lauren Kokoskie

Recently the Penn State Advanced Vehicle Team (PSU AVT) packed up and blasted off to WPSU Eventapolooza. The annual event held by local radio station, WPSU, gives kids and their families the opportunity to see what it is like to work behind the scenes at a radio station and interact with organizations within the State College community. This year, the organization decided to put an out-of-this-world twist on the event by making it a “cosmic carnival” theme. Attendees had the opportunity to learn about various organizations in the community while wearing alien antennas and pretending to be astronauts.

PSU AVT team members were given the opportunity to teach potential future engineers about the future of vehicles and alternative fuels.


PSU AVT put their own cosmic spin on the transportation industry by helping kids create eco-friendly spaceships. Participants had the opportunity to use paper plates, glue, googly eyes, and puffballs to create a one-of-a-kind spaceship.


The PSU AVT team members then explained hybrid-electric technology and invited the kids to draw their own alternative fuel source on their own spaceships, and explain why they chose their respective alternative fuel source.


PSU AVT was able to educate over 150 kids and their families about the EcoCAR 3 competition, while working with the Event Coordinator, Tamra Fatemi-Badi, for WPSU and the entire staff. Although the team can’t build spaceships, we think hybrid-electric vehicles are out-of-this-world.