by Joanne Chow
It’s nice to finally see the sun in Vancouver. Welcome, summer! And what can demonstrate the power of the sun better than a solar car built by UBC students?
After hours of hard work, we have finally mounted the solar cells modules on our car.
The printed circuit board of our maximum power point tracker has finally arrived. Maximum power point tracker will help maximizing the efficiency of our solar cells.
The mechanical team has designed the rear and front suspensions of the car and it should be completed by late August or early September.
May and June have been two very busy months for UBC Solar. First up, structural team has been working on the canopy of the car. The photo below is the mould of the canopy, taken outside engineering design center on our Saturday meeting.
Electrical team has been working with the solar cell circuit. We have placed the solar cells on to the aeroshell for measurement. As planned, the solar cells will be mounted by the end of June.
Mechanical team has done amazing work to improve the aerodynamics of the aeroshell too.
Last but not the least, for the logistic side, we have printed our new team T-shirts. Check out the AMS Sustainability logo on the back! We are still actively looking for both products and financial sponsors, so please check out our sponsorship page if you would like your company logo go on the next batch of T-shirts.
Time flies and it’s almost the end of an amazing school year! We wish your year is as awesome as ours because this year, UBC Solar had made great progress on our solar car!
First’s up – we have done some outreach at E-Fest 2012 at Vancouver Public Library Central Branch. We met many people, mostly students and families, who are interested in our project. We, of course, have promoted the idea of sustainability at the event! We are not going to bore you with the details because we have got great news!
Great news number one! Our proud mechanical team and electrical team have finally got the motor controller working! They put the motor and rear swing arm on and drove around in the area near the Engineering Design Centre. It was the first time we’ve driven the car with the driver controlling from inside the car. (Okay, it might not be the completed car, but you can see the roll-cage is rolling!) You can check out our video here!
Great news number two! The bottom-side of the areoshell body is done! After many hours of work in the workshop, we have finally completed the bottom half of the areoshell. Since we have gained the experience and completed the mould for the top part, it wouldn’t take very long to finish the top side of the areoshell body.
So, be patient and wait for more of our good news next month!
by Joanne Chow
Happy Reading Week! We’ve made great progress over the last few weeks. Our aeroshell mould is almost complete and we are a few short weeks away from the final aeroshell itself. Below is a picture of our areoshell mould in Maple Ridge. We have put down the first layer of fibre-glass for the mould and we will put down the remaining three layers throughout the next week.
We’ve had some good progress on the electrical side and mechanical side as well. The electrical team is finishing our motor controller and working on the maximum power point tracker, communication between the CAN-BUS and microcontroller and multiple sensors on the car. The mechanical team is cutting some chromoly tubing for the second iteration of the swingarm.
If we keep up the good work, we could have our car looking like a car and rolling under its own power in a month! If you are interested in what we are doing in our weekly work party, feel free to contact us or check us out in the Wayne & William White Engineering Design Center every Saturday at 11am.
by Joanne Chow
It’s January. Students have returned back to school, our project team meetings have resumed, and we have good news to report.
First, news from the mechanical team. The design stage is going well and the implementation of the physical system is also done. Team members are busy working on documentation, such as the length of every nail, angel of every joining point between two pieces of metal, the brake system, and steering.
Second, the mold for the areoshell is close to completion too. We are still finalizing details and fine-tuning the mold. According to our structural team manager, once the mold (the hardest part of making the shell) is complete, the fabrication of the actual areoshell will be very easy to make.
For electrical and electronic side, we have a few first and second year students working on some small, but important, electronic component to ensure the driver will have a great experience driving on a hot sunny day.
Also, several electrical engineering students have decided to join UBC Solar and volunteered to work on the Maximum-Power-Point-Tracker, a very important electrical component that converts the 72 Volts from solar cells to 48 Volts for the Lithium-Polymer batteries. Finally, the motor controller circuit is close to completion; in other word, we should have a running vehicle before ASC and we will drive around the Greater Vancouver area to raise environmental awareness.