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13 June 2014
The University’s Formula Student team are vying for the top spot of an international competition held at Silverstone where on 10 July they will race their fastest and lightest ever Formula car prototype.The team, made up of students from the School of Engineering, hope to this year achieve their best ever finish with their 10th car to be submitted to competition in as many years. Work started in August on the design of the 2014 car, named CR10.
Formula Student is the World’s most established and competitive global student motorsport competition. Universities worldwide compete to design, build and race the best single-student car using cutting edge innovative technologies, while allowing students to develop their engineering skills and knowledge.Cardiff Racing’s team principle Dewi Griffiths said: "We’ve got a great team this year which has allowed us to progress through the design phase efficiently without compromising quality. Being involved with Cardiff Racing has enabled me to apply what I have learned in my lectures to a real life situation." Having dispensed altogether with using carbon fibre to build the car’s components and instead opting to use biodegradable flax fibres, sustainability sits at the forefront of the team’s design ethos. This, in conjunction with the use of lightweight aluminium structures and cutting edge compressed air shock absorbers, has helped minimise the environmental impact and ensured the car’s lightweight design.Using 3D printing technology, the team has been able to produce lightweight components for the car such as the steering wheel, air-intake and nosecone. John Dally, an engineering student and member of the Cardiff Racing team said: "3D printing technology brings huge benefits in time saving to the manufacture of components. "Traditionally you would need someone to man a machine all day to produce a component. 3D printing doesn’t require intensive man hours – it’s simply a case of clicking print at the end of the day and by the time you get in the next day your component is finished. It has also allowed us to design more complex components that would be difficult or even impossible to produce by other methods. It’s been fantastic to get this kind of hands on experience with emerging technologies at Cardiff University as part of my degree."The team have developed a community engagement arm that has visited local schools and science shows to inspire a new generation of engineers. They hope to raise over £1000 for local children’s hospice Ty Hafan with their ’24 Heures du Cardiff’ challenge; members of the team will drive a Formula Student simulator non-stop for 24 hours from 11am on Thursday (12/06) to 11am Friday (13/06), before unveiling the CR10. This event is open to the public.The 2014 car has brought together students from all engineering disciplines with a variety of skills and expertise. Past students involved in the Formula Student team have gone on to secure graduate positions in every engineering field, from formula one teams and world-leading aerospace companies to the energy sector.Formula Student is set to take place at Silverstone, UK on 10th – 13th July. Visit www.formulastudent.com for more information.
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