Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University has opened the doors of a new “green garage,” where engineering students are using aerospace techniques to develop a car of tomorrow, as well as develop a reduced-emissions airplane for NASA’s Green Flight Challenge, while investigating the use of alternative lead-free aviation fuels.
Embry-Riddle President John Johnson cut the ribbon Dec. 4 for the new engineering laboratory located on the university’s Daytona Beach campus, with assistance from Volusia County (Fla.) council members Joie Alexander and Patricia Northey.
The garage is fully equipped for development of a vehicle that Embry-Riddle students are creating for the EcoCar Challenge, a three-year competition sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy, General Motors, and other organizations. The students, who call themselves the EcoEagles, are designing and building an Extended Range Electric Vehicle that will be fuel efficient, environmentally friendly, and high performance, according to university officials.
The garage includes a rotary vehicle lift, dedicated high-voltage room, and integrated hardware-in-the-loop laboratory donated by National Instruments. It also showcases an environmental focus at Embry-Riddle’s College of Engineering. Every component in the lab was chosen to reduce environmental impact, including the floor covering, which is made from recycled tires. Interior design students from Daytona State College assisted in designing the new facility.
Other environmental initiatives led by Embry-Riddle’s College of Engineering include the development of a reduced-emissions airplane for NASA’s Green Flight Challenge, the investigation of alternative lead-free aviation fuels, and the creation of a new track on alternative energy in the Mechanical Engineering degree program.
The “green garage” was made possible by the support of EcoCar Challenge sponsors General Motors, the Department of Energy, and the Government of Canada, in addition to Embry-Riddle team sponsors International Speedway Corp., US Didactic, and SolarFit.
For more information: EmbryRiddle.edu.