Team wants top five finish
WATCH stuff.co.nz A car built from scratch by the hands of University of Waikato engineering students has a top speed of 160kmh and goes from zero to 100 in four seconds.
These specs make it a suitable ride for the upcoming Formula SAE (Society of Automotive Engineers) competition in Melbourne.
With titles like data acquisition and analysis engineer, the nine honours students are a bona- fide racing team. The name is Wesmo (Waikato Engineering Society of Motorsport) and is a student organisation at the university.
Each year the team members research, design, manufacture and race an open-wheel racing car in the engineering design competition Formula SAE.
Deputy team leader and chassis engineer Seth Aandewiel said it began with a group of 25 university students in 2006.
‘‘It was just a group of guys that tried to push it as a project but didn’t get any funding,’’ he said.
The car is solely built by the students.
‘‘The biggest challenge for building an SAE car is probably the time,’’ Aandewiel said. ‘‘We’ve got a year to research and develop ideas and design a car. A year is not a long time and it can be a push.’’
Nathan Senior is the suspension engineer on the car and said the knowledge transfer from year to year is also a difficulty.
‘‘We’re literally learning as we go,’’ he said. ‘‘It’s pretty tough.’’ Other members of the crew are Angela Engelsman, Sean Craig, Elliot Watson, Brad Webb, Josh Parkin, Shuai Sun and Adam Wollin.
Their university supervisor is Mark Lay.
The competition is held each December in Melbourne. Wesmo will be up against 30 other vehicles.
They will be presenting their 2015 car at the CRC Speedshow in Auckland.
At previous Formula SAE competitions, Wesmo has placed 13th, 6th, 12th and 11th.
This year the team in red and black aims for a top five finish.
‘‘There’s a lot of work to go to get there,’’ Aandewiel said.
For more information, visit facebook.com/wesmofsae or contact Nathan at email@example.com.
Wesmo team member Josh Parkin putting the go-kart through its paces. PHOTO: GEORGE HEARD/FAIRFAX NZ