Update from the Pits: Students Say…

It is Day 3 out at the GM Desert Proving Ground and EcoCAR 3 teams are hard at work in the garage. Some teams started making their way through the stages of Safety Tech inspections. This process is a thorough evaluation of the vehicles from the mechanical and electrical standpoint to ensure vehicle safety. Safety Technical Inspector, Kevin Stutenberg, said, “It is interesting to see the new ideas and concepts teams have come up with over the years and how their vehicles have evolved. My favorite part of safety tech is being able to help guide the students and teach them about quality and safety.”

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According to UA Project Manager, Kaylie Crosby, it is quite exciting to start the safety tech process to see how their hard work will pay off. “Our team secured several new technical in-kind donations which have boosted the team’s fabrication capabilities during the vehicle build. It’s been an incredible 2 years as a first-year school in the EcoCAR 3 competition, and we’re looking forward to finishing strong. We are Built by Bama!” EcoCAR3_Tuesday_2016MY17_038

The preparation and planning process began even before the vehicles were received in late 2015. The Embry-Riddle team developed a schedule in October and assigned all tasks to an individual or subteam in order to be prepared for competition. Project Manager Jared Nordman said, “We have enforced a rigorous schedule for team members and have met all of our milestones for the entire year. From management perspective I’m really proud of the team and where we are. The schedule alone kept our team on track and gave us something to fight for.”EcoCAR3_Tuesday_2016MY17_010

The garage has been a hub for activity and excitement for teams. ASU team member, Dillon Hurley said, “So far, my favorite part of competition has been seeing all the teams and what they’ve accomplished. I think it’s impressive the different directions everyone has taken and it is great to see the teams working together to achieve the same goal.

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This is the second time out at the GM Desert Proving Grounds for Lucas Shoults, the Engineering Manager from Virginia Tech. “It’s great to see how our team has come together. We were bonded before coming to competition but I am excited to see that working on the car here at DPG only brought us closer,” Lucas said.EcoCAR3_Tuesday_2016MY17_117

While some team members are working on their vehicles, others have gathered to prepare and work on presentations for Stage 2 of the competition in San Diego.  Team Tennessee Communications Manager, Emily King, said “When a few of us are unable to work on our car, we are trying to take as much time as we can to work on presentations. The goal of our presentations are to showcase what we have done throughout the year. It is crucial for the judges to see our accomplishments and hard work.

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