Just before the Embry Riddle EcoCAR 2 team’s review with competition sponsor A123, a rainbow of colored wires was threaded through the 2013 Chevy Malibu in the EcoEagles’ lab. Energy slowly seeped through the car, expanding out from the AC driven engine to the DC-driven systems like the air conditioning, displays and radio. With the engine fully in place, the details had come together.
The review with A123 prior to Year Two competition was intended to gauge the readiness of the battery pack. “Once the battery pack was commissioned,” said Kenneth Leslie, team leader of the Eco-Eagles, “we installed the batteries into our vehicle and began testing the high voltage components. This was a big milestone for our team.”
The team wiring encountered a few setbacks, each of which was handled more gracefully than the one before. The engine bay wiring was simplified by re-using the stock fuse and relay box from the original donated engine. With the energy storage system complete, the team can continue perfecting the vehicle in Year Three, which is quickly approaching!