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The Mississippi State EcoCAR team has had an exciting summer so far! In early June, the team took its EcoCAR for a victory lap around campus and was greeted with cheers, signs, and of course cowbells in celebration of the recent win at the EcoCAR Year Two Competition Finals.  After completing the lap, the vehicle drove MSU president Dr. Mark Keenum and Dean of Engineering Dr. Sarah Rajala to MSU’s Center for Advanced Vehicular Systems. Delivering the opening remarks, President Keenum said he was “beaming with pride” over the team’s success and called the team the “envy of the SEC.”  He announced to a cheering crowd that “this is tantamount to Mississippi State University winning a national championship. We competed against the best of the best.”

The MSU EcoCAR ready for its victory lap!

The team’s victory lap was well-documented, with students stopping on the sidewalks to snap pictures and video of the car as it drove past.  There were several photographers and television crews on campus to capture the event, as well as a film truck trailing the convoy to record every frame in high-definition.  

For more pictures, check out the team’s Facebook page, here!

With seven E85, six B20 biodiesel, two H2 fuel cell, and one full-electric vehicle at the Year Two Finals, the contest was fierce as each team showcased their unique vehicle architecture and competed for the first place trophy.

In the end, Mississippi State University took top honors with their plug-in series hybrid. The team won more than 15 awards during the Year Two Competition Finals, including 1st place in Energy Storage Design, 1st place in Outreach, 1st place in every Emissions and Energy Consumption event, and had the Best Controls, Mechanical, and Vehicle Design Review presentations.

In Year Two, the Mississippi team integrated a variety of components into their vehicle to decrease emissions and maintain consumer acceptability. The team’s plug-in range-extended hybrid included a well designed, translucent energy storage system cover with an inventive liquid cooling system. They had an innovative high-voltage wire routing, urea injection system, and maintained stock cargo space. They even bettered the baseline vehicle by more than two seconds in the Autocross Event.

MSU's EcoCAR on the road!

MSU also won every dynamic event in the Emission and Energy Consumption category. For the first time in Advanced Vehicle Technology Competition history, the Mississippi team received the highest fuel consumption score. The team utilized more than 90 percent of their 21 kWh battery pack and finished both the 22 mile and 44 mile schedule without using any biodiesel. The team was also able to significantly reduce their petroleum use by charge depleting for 60 miles and bettered the baseline vehicle’s greenhouse gas score by more than 30 percent in the Well-to-Wheel Greenhouse Gases event. In the end, Mississippi State achieved Tier 2, Bin 7 emissions over the EcoCAR drive schedule and averaged less than 2 Lge/100km in fuel consumption.

Taking home second place at the Year Two Finals, Virginia Tech won a combined eight trophies including Best Electrical Presentation and Best Braking, and was the runner up in Best Petroleum Energy Usage and Best Tailpipe Emissions. The team’s E85 engine with a 15 kilowatt belted alternator and 80 kilowatt rear traction drive successfully completed every dynamic event.  Virginia Tech’s vehicle stopped within mere seconds during the Braking event and won Best Static Consumer Acceptability with a clean engine compartment, five passenger seating, and a fully functional touch screen.

The Virginia Tech EcoCAR during emissions testing

Penn State University placed third overall with a 1.3L, B20 biodiesel series hybrid. At the Year Two Finals, the team took home eight awards, including Best AVL Drive Quality, Best Social Media, 2nd in A123 Battery Design, 3rd in Outreach, and was the runner up in Best Fuel Consumption and Best Tailpipe Emissions. The team’s fuel consumption averaged around 4.1 Lge/100 km and the EcoCAR displayed impressive acceleration linearity and quick throttle response during the Drive Quality dynamic tests. In addition, the team was able to host more than 50 outreach events and increase media relations by more than 400 percent in the outreach program.

The PSU team working under hood

Although Mississippi State, Virginia Tech and Penn State were the top three teams in Year Two, there was a variety of other awards given out during Finals. You can find the complete list of winners, here.

With only one year left, the EcoCAR competition will get fierce as all 16 EcoCAR teams fight for the number one spot in Year Three. Who will it be? Check back to the Inside the Green Garage blog throughout Year Three for team and competition updates!

What is your team’s secret to winning? What kind of fuel economy did your vehicle get? What was the best part about being at the GM Desert Proving Ground in Yuma?

Check back to the Inside the Green Garage blog tomorrow at 3 p.m. ET for an opportunity to talk shop with the EcoCAR Year Two winners – Mississippi State, Virginia Tech and Penn State. Simply click below to join the chat and ask the teams your questions.

Webchat with the Top Three Universities from Year Two EcoCAR Challenge

The EcoCAR teams have now headed home after almost two weeks of intense competition in Yuma and San Diego. Most teams are invigorated by the competition, and use it as an opportunity to see how their vehicle measures up in a rigorous test environment.  Even as the students left the awards ceremony and began heading to the airport, they could be heard discussing their strategy for next year. It’s a testament to how passionate these young people are about their vehicles and the EcoCAR program.

While many students graduated this year and have accepted jobs in the industry, many are coming back along with new recruits the team brings on board for the third and final year of EcoCAR. Most of the returning students will be spending at least part of their summer in their Green Garage, because the competition doesn’t get any easier during the third year, when they will be asked to further refine their vehicles and make them fully-functional prototype vehicles with “near showroom” quality.

Check out the final results from Year Two below, presented at the EcoCAR 2010 Awards Ceremony:

1st Overall – Mississippi State University
2nd Overall – Virginia Tech
3rd Overall – Pennsylvania State University
4th Overall – University of Victoria
5th Overall – The Ohio State University
6th Overall – University of Ontario Institute of Technology

Best Mechanical Systems Presentation – Mississippi State University
Best Electrical Systems Presentation – Virginia Tech
Best Controls Event Presentation – Mississippi State University
Best Vehicle Design Review – Mississippi State University
Best Static Consumer Acceptability – Virginia Tech
Best Dynamic Consumer Acceptability – University of Ontario Institute of Technology
Best Lange Change – University of Ontario Institute of Technology/Virginia Tech
Best Acceleration – Mississippi State University
Best AVL Drive – Pennsylvania State University
Best Braking – Virginia Tech
Best Autocross – Mississippi State University
Best Fuel Consumption – Mississippi State University
Best Fuel Consumption-Runner Up – Pennsylvania State University
Best Tailpipe Emissions – Mississippi State University
Best Tailpipe Emissions-Runner Up – Virginia Tech/Pennsylvania State University
Best Petroleum Energy Usage – Mississippi State University
Best Petroleum Energy Usage-Runner Up – Virginia Tech
Most Improved Team – North Carolina State University
Best Vehicle Appearance – Rose Hulman Institute of Technology
Best Engineering & Fabrication Workmanship – University of Waterloo
Dr. Don Streit Sportsmanship Award – University of Victoria
Ron Stence Spirit of the Challenge Award – University of Victoria

National Instruments-1st Place – Virginia Tech
National Instruments-2nd Place – University of Wisconsin
National Instruments-3rd Place – Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University
dSPACE-1st Place – The Ohio State University
dSPACE-2nd Place – Mississippi State University
dSPACE-3rd Place – University of Victoria
The Mathworks-1st Place – The Ohio State University
The Mathworks-2nd Place – Rose Hulman Institute of Technology
The Mathworks-3rd Place – Mississippi State University
Freescale Award – The Ohio State University
Bosch-1st Place – Missouri Science & Technology
Bosch-2nd Place – University of Ontario Institute of Technology
Bosch-3rd Place – The Ohio State University
A123Systems-1st Place – Mississippi State University
A123Systems-2nd Place – Pennsylvania State University
A123Systems-3rd Place – University of Victoria

Click here for a list of the Outreach and Sponsor awards presented at the EcoCAR Sponsor Social last week.

Please join us on Friday, June 4 at 3:00 p.m. EDT for an opportunity to chat with the recently announced EcoCAR Year Two winners: Mississippi State, Virginia Tech and Penn State. During the Web chat, the teams will answer questions about their exceptional vehicles, highlights from Year Two and their strategies for Year Three of the competition! The conversation will take place right here on the Inside the Green Garage blog. No early registration is required, just come to the site and have your questions ready! Please spread the word and we’ll see you back here next Friday.

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