While HEVT was away for the summer, the team received its 2013 Chevy Malibu from General Motors, but now team members – including a new set of eager seniors – have spent more than a month continuing Virginia Tech’s motto of “Inventing the Future” by implementing the vehicle architecture they designed in Year One.
This Series-Parallel Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV) will send energy to the wheels through two very distinct paths, using a 2.4L E85 engine and also a Rear Traction Motor (RTM). These two paths can work separately, allowing for electric only operation or in conjunction with one another allowing an increase in performance and efficiency in various situations. The design was approved at the Year One Finals, in which HEVT placed fourth out of 15 teams.
So what has HEVT been up to in Year Two? This year team members have started to get their hands dirty by stripping out some of the stock components in the Malibu and adding hybrid components they designed last year. By the time spring break comes around the team will have what is known as a “mule” vehicle. The “mule” vehicle will be able to run on both electricity and ethanol and although the vehicle will be functional, it will not yet be complete. Some components like the radio interface and paint color may not be done yet. Refining and finalizing the car to cover all five competition goals will take place in the final year (Year Three).
Some of HEVT’s other plans for Year Two are to reach out to youth and policy makers both online and through different events. The team is excited to engage all of its followers through social media and events. If you have an event that you would like HEVT to attend or if you would like to Skype with the team please, send them an email!