Future Truck Project
. . . Developing Greener
buyers have been shifting away from passenger cars -
more than half of all new vehicles sold in the United
States today are sport utility vehicles (SUVs) and light-duty
trucks. These vehicles use more fuel than passenger
cars, leading to greater dependence on imported oil
and increased exhaust emissions.
a joint government-industry project by the U.S. Department
of Energy and General Motors Corporation, Future Truck
a competitive student program was developed to meet
this challenge. Since that time, more than a dozen well
known organizations have joined forces to tackle one
of the toughest engineering challenges of our time -
taking the country's most popular working SUV and taming
its environmental impact making it a "greener" vehicle.
for the Office of Advanced Automotive Technologies (DOE),
Robert Kirk stated "Reducing our dependence on petroleum
and decreasing exhaust emissions is the mission of the
Office of Advanced Automotive Technologies (OAAT). America's
ever growing need for economical and reliable transportation
is leading us into an unsustainable dependence on the
world's dwindling supply of oil. We are on the brink
of a transportation revolution".
Bringing together resources of industry, government,
and academia to solve the important environmental and
technical problems posed by the growing demand for SUV's
and light duty trucks, Future Truck was developed to
challenge the engineering of a full size Chevrolet Suburban.
teams from 15 top North American universities were formed
to compete against one another. The challenge: to develop
alternative propulsion systems and fuels that demonstrate
increased energy efficiency and reduced emissions. To
do this, students explore cutting edge automotive technologies,
such a fuel cells and advanced propulsion systems, space
age materials, and alternative fuels such as ethanol
and hydrogen. The goal: re-engineer the SUV into a low-emission,
high efficiency vehicle-without sacrificing the performance,
utility, safety and affordability that consumers want.
U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), through its Argonne
National Laboratory subsidiary, has provided competition
management, staffing, team evaluation, and technical
and financial assistance. "We are confident that our
programs will provide the vital research to meet our
nations critical need for personal, light duty transportation,
while dramatically reducing exhaust emissions and America's
dependence on petroleum" Director, Kirk stated.
Motors (GM) has supplied brand new vehicles, $10,000
seed money and engineering consulting for each team,
competition facilities, and operational support. GM
and the DOE are headline sponsors for the Future Truck
the program began new partners and sponsors have been
climbing aboard to offer technical expertise, donating
equipment and financial support. Many supporters of
the Future Truck competition see this as a valuable
opportunity to recruit new engineers with demonstrated
ability to work with advanced automotive technologies.
Other supporters of Future Truck include: The National
Science Foundation, Cisco Systems, Delphi Automotive
Systems, Ford Motor Company and BP Amoco. In addition
to these major sponsors, several other organizations
have joined Future Truck as competition supporters and
are providing varying degrees of financial support,
technical expertise and equipment. Each of these organizations
is also helping in the evaluation of vehicles and presentations
of awards to teams. These supporters include: Mathworks,
Newark Electronics, National Instruments, Natural Resources
Canada, the Illinois Department of Commerce and Community
Affairs, the Renewable Fuels Association, the Governors'
Ethanol Coalition and the Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company.
Through this opportunity, many students are able to
compete in similar competitions such as Cisco Systems
Telematics Event. Participating teams in this event
will explore emerging wireless technologies, as well
as on board computing for performing remote vehicle
diagnostics, navigation and infotainment. These technologies
can enhance driver and vehicle safety and also reduce
the vehicle's overall environmental impact. Cisco Systems
is supplying technical assistance as well as cash and
equipment prizes to selected teams.
more information on the Future Truck program and this
years competition winners log onto http://www.futuretruck.org