The fall term of Year Three in the EcoCAR Challenge brought with it significant milestones for the University of Waterloo Alternative Fuels Team (UWAFT). Without a doubt, the most notable milestone was the first successful start of their GM-donated fuel cell stack. Days later, GM engineers traveled to the University of Waterloo campus to assess the progress of the team. This was an exciting event for UWAFT engineers, as they were able to obtain valuable feedback from GM powertrain professionals. With the fuel cell up and running, the team members are now waiting on the installation of the DC-to-DC converter that will bring everything together and allow the vehicle to run in hybrid mode.
There were two other major achievements that occurred during the fall term. First, the complete redesign of their high-voltage battery pack using A123 donated battery modules, and second, the development of a custom-built DC-to-DC converter. With these milestones in the rearview, UWAFT looks forward to the EcoCAR Spring Workshop in March at the U.S. EPA facilities in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
For a further technical update, including footage of the first successful start of the GM- donated fuel cell stack at Waterloo, check out the video below: