Matt Peak, director of mobility at Energy Systems Network says, "What we're asking universities to do is hard. Our hope is that by bringing together and offering up to participating teams the world's premier automotive proving ground, performance chassis manufacturer, engineering research center and simulation platform, as well as nearly $1.5 million in total cash awards, universities will see the Challenge as not just throwing down the gauntlet but also extending the helping hand to accelerate innovation and the arrival of new technologies."
Joining in the announcement were race car manufacturer Dallara Automobili (Varano de' Melegari, Italy) and the Clemson University International Center for Automotive Research (CU-ICAR). Through Clemson University's vehicle prototype program Deep Orange , Clemson graduate automotive engineering students will collaborate with ESN and Dallara to engineer an autonomous-capable version of Dallara's 210-mph IL-15 Indy Lights chassis that can accommodate the competing university teams' driverless algorithms.
Participating teams will be directly involved in the converted vehicle's design and specifications through monthly virtual design reviews (VDRs) and other feedback channels throughout the competition. As of the opening of the competition, five universities had already registered: Korea Advanced Institute of Science & Technology (KAIST), Texas A&M Transportation Institute (TTI), University of Florida, University of Illinois, and the University of Virginia.
Registration is open for accredited, tax-exempt colleges and universities (including foreign institutions of higher education) through Feb. 28, 2020.
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