With the first semester of the third and final year of EcoCAR: The NeXt Challenge under their belt, Mississippi State University’s EcoCAR controls team has been hard at work applying what they learned from the Winter Workshop at The Mathworks headquarters in Boston, MA, to their vehicle control systems.  Not only has the controls team updated their Hardware-in-the-Loop simulator to match their championship competition vehicle, but will soon begin the optimization process using super-computers.

Super-computing allows for iterative simulations to deterimine how systems and components will behave under varioius conditions (image from http://www.HPC.msstate.edu)

MSU is part of the High Performance Computing Collaboratory.  As such, the MSU EcoCAR team is excited to leverage these resources to produce a controller strategy that is optimized for energy management.  Thanks to the support of dSPACE and The Mathworks, the MSU controls team will be optimizing using the latest versions of MATLAB® & Simulink®, which will help keep MSU on top of the competition.

“We are very fortunate to have access to some incredible resources here at Mississippi State University, and as a competition team, we are very excited to use super-computing to push the boundaries of our control systems,” said team leader Matt Doude. “We like having a competitive edge, and we like that edge to be sharp.”

As the team moves forward in the competition, they will also be utilizing other cutting-edge technologies, including a four-wheel chassis dynamometer and 3D virtual environment simulations.