In celebration of National Engineers Week, EcoCAR organizers participated in Introduce a Girl to Engineering Day at Argonne National Laboratory .
As part of a tradition over a decade long, middle school girls from the Chicago area visited the lab to learn about engineering and the careers it can lead to. The girls also toured the lab and were paired with a female scientist who served as their mentors for the day.
EcoCAR organizers spent the day explaining technologies that can be applied to automotive engineering. In the morning, organizers demonstrated how electric motors work and explained how this technology can be used to power vehicles instead of oil and gas. The girls then built a small simplified electric motor and powered it with a battery.
In the afternoon, organizers assisted the girls in assembling powertrains for small electric cars. The students selected their chassis, axles, and pulleys to try and make the fastest cars possible. They then tested the cars on a test track, refined their designs by changing out pulleys or tires, and retested them. EcoCAR organizers helped the students troubleshoot problems and taught them about the relationship between torque and speed with gear trains.
Learning about technology and the science behind vehicles at an early age can make girls feel more comfortable and excited about careers in automotive engineering, and may join the next generation of AVTCs!
Categories: In the Community