Students from Thailand emerged with the best run at Shell Eco-marathon Asia 2012 with a mileage of 2,903 km/l. That's the distance equivalent of driving from Kuala Lumpur to Hanoi.
Acknowledging the outstanding performance of this year’s student teams in an award ceremony, Shell Malaysia Country Chair Lain Lo said, “The level of energy and team spirit exuded in the pit and on the track has been truly amazing. It has shown that with team work, impressive results can be achieved. One can’t help but be optimistic that achieving smarter mobility is not too distant a dream, when our future is already thinking of solutions today.”
Team Luk Jao Mae Khlong Prapa of Dhurakij Pubdit University Thailand, which achieved the highest mileage of this year’s event, competed in the Prototype category running on Ethanol E100 and improved on its own 2011 mileage record of 2,213.4 km/l by more than 30 percent.
“The team is really excited – we were targeting to improve on our performance but have exceeded even our own expectations,” said Dr. Narongdech Keeratipranon, advisor to Team Luk Jao Mae Khlong Prapa. “We made several modifications this year including a new engine, bearings and tyres, improving our air-fuel ratio and employing a new driving strategy. The pressure is on to perform even better next year, and we are aiming to participate in new categories.”
In the UrbanConcept category, Team Cikal Cakrasvarna from Indonesia achieved the highest mileage of 196.3 km/l, running on gasoline.
The 2012 edition of the event has proven to be yet another milestone year with more student teams than ever before participating to design, build and test fuel-efficient vehicles that travel the farthest distance using the least amount of energy. This year’s competition involved 119 student teams from 18 countries across Asia and Middle East.
Commenting on the quality of this year’s entries, Colin Chin, Technical Director of Shell Eco-marathon Asia said, “Overall, the teams were much better prepared for this year’s competition with 109 of 119 vehicles passing technical inspection – a significant improvement from last year. It’s also been really encouraging to see student teams not just modifying their previous entries, but challenging themselves to create brand new vehicles this year.”
Students entered vehicles in either of two categories: Prototype and UrbanConcept. Prototype vehicles are typically smaller in size and more futuristic-looking with an overall design concept to reduce drag and maximise efficiency. In the UrbanConcept category, teams designed and built 4-wheeled fuel-economy vehicles that look similar to the passenger cars we see on the road today. In addition to meeting specific height, width, length and weight criteria, the UrbanConcept vehicles must be capable of driving in wet weather conditions.
For both vehicle categories, teams used either Internal Combustion Engines that run on either diesel, gasoline, ethanol, fatty acid methyl ester (FAME) or Shell Gas to Liquids; or e-mobility energy sources including solar, fuel cells and battery electric technologies.
Achieving the best run in the various energy types was not the only way to win at Shell Eco-marathon Asia 2012. Teams were also given the opportunity to compete for Off-Track Awards on Safety, Technical Innovation, Design and Communications. In this year’s competition, new awards were also given for Eco-Design, Best Team Spirit and Perseverance in the Face of Adversity.
The “Technical Innovation Award” was presented to the DLSU Eco-marathon Team – Proto from Philippines’ De La Salle University. The team impressed judges with an innovative battery management system and smart cruise control function to electronically ensure the best fuel efficiency possible. Judge Lee Grant from the Southwest Research Institute said “They had the most advanced telemetry system I have seen at Shell Eco-marathon Asia.”
A special “Eco-Design Award” was presented to Team USM-EVT from University Sains Malaysia for their unique UrbanConcept vehicle made of wood. The biodegradable and modular design went beyond reducing fuel consumption and emissions constructed with eco-friendly materials.
The “Best Team Spirit Award” was presented to team TIP Mileage from the Technological Institute of the Philippines who stood out with their collaborative spirit, positive dynamics and highly energised attitudes.
The “Perseverance in the Face of Adversity Award” was presented to team PLM Alpha3 of Pusat Latihan Mekanik, Brunei Darussalam for the team’s strength of will and determination to put together a valid entry with limited resources and funding. By collecting scrap metal and unwanted items for sale to raise funds, the team was able to complete their vehicle for entry into the competition.
The “Design Award” was presented to the SOLOMON Fuel Cell Vehicle team from the National Kaohsiung University of Applied Sciences, Chinese Taipei based on a set of criteria comprising originality, aesthetics, exterior and interior finishing as well as new technologies applied. The team’s Star Wars-inspired “Jedi Knight” design stood out for its superior finishing featuring the team’s own logo and branding, ergonomic interior to maximise the driver’s performance as well as touch-screen technology within the vehicle.
In the Prototype category, the “Safety Award” was presented to the Nanyang Technological University’s Diesel Car Racing Team from Singapore who used advanced technological solutions to meet and exceed safety requirements.
The “Communications Award” went to Beijing Technological University’s BIT QAT I for taking communications beyond fund-raising for the team. The team’s efforts to raise public awareness on clean energy and reducing carbon emissions with public exhibitions at museums and talks at local schools helped them stand out and walk away with the ”Communications Award” prize.
For more information on all 2012 Shell Eco-marathon events across the globe, including official rules, instructions for registration and details on prizes, please visit the Shell Eco-marathon website at www.shell.com/ecomarathon.