CT Electrathon Challenge Results Are In!
Below is a listing of the results from Lime Rock Park in Connecticut for the Fall 2007 CT Electrathon Challenge. Fun was had by all and congratulations go out to all the teams who placed in the following categories:
||Lyme, Old Lyme H.S.
||Chicopee Comp. H.S.
||South Colonie H.S.
|CT 070||Bristol Tech||88
|NY 006||Cheshire H.S.||46|
Local groups come together to show how to save energy
October 21st, 2007 Article from the Oneida Daily Dispatch
ONEIDA - Oneida Wal-Mart and community organizations gathered at the Kallet Civic Center Sunday to help make a difference in the community.
"Make a Difference Day," was a free event sponsored by Oneida Wal-Mart and Rotary Club. Amy DeJohn, Wal-Mart store manager and spearhead of this event said, "Ten associates and I came up with this event to show people how to save energy and water and to make a difference in the community."
She added she would like to see this event become annual.
DeJohn said she got the idea for this event from the nationwide "Make A Difference Day" that is celebrated on the fourth Saturday in October. This year, it's on Oct. 27.
"It's a community coming together to do things for community members, to show that we can make a difference in our lives," she said.
Several organizations volunteered to be part of the day and to hand out information to people.
The Cazenovia High School Technology Lab was at the Kallet to show people how energy is used and how to utilize alternative sources of energy.
The Madison-Oneida Chapter of the American Red Cross discussed how to deal with disasters and emergencies. There was an example of a preparedness kit that included food, bottles of water, emergency blankets, a can opener and a battery-operated radio. ...
Dispatch Staff Photo by JOHN HAEGER Thomas Shaw, 15, Gerrit
Wistruop, 14, in car, and Erin Kinney, 17, show the Cazenovia
High School’s Tech Labs Electrathon Racing Team during Make
a Difference Day held at the Kallet Civic Center in Oneida Sunday.
2007 CNY Electrathon Challenge A Huge Success
June 10th, 2007 Future Article for the Cazenovia Blue & Gold
Sunshine, seventy five degrees, hamburgers and hotdogs, good music, and electric and solar cars, all made for a great day on Saturday June 9th at Durgee Junior High in Baldwinsville NY. Over 200 people came out for the first ever 2007 CNY Electrathon Challenge to watch Baker HS and Cazenovia HS race their student built electric racecars. The event was sponsored by the Baker HS Technology Department, The Caz HS Racing Team, the Cazenovia Athletic Association and SUNY Morrisville.
This whole day event started at 9:00am with all three cars being inspected by a team of professors from SUNY Morrisville. They made sure that all the cars were safe to race, and that the drivers knew how to drive the cars safely. All cars are required to have roll cages, five point safety harnesses like those worn by NASCAR drivers, DOT approved racing helmets, and adequate brakes. After a few modifications, all the cars were safe to continue.
For the next two hours, drivers were allowed to practice on the track, which was a 3/10th’s of a mile triangular track similar to Pocono Raceway. “The 1st turn was a killer. It was a good thing we were able to practice, because that corner was a lot sharper than any we’ve ever raced on.” said Richard Budnar, driver for car # 37. Erin Kinney, who drove in a race for the first time Saturday in car #37 said: “I took it very slow at first, but the practice really helped to be able to understand how the car was going to handle during the race.”
During this practice session, everyone was treated to demonstrations by Cato-Meridian’s SunPacer, and Irondaquoit’s Zodiac solar cars. These are full size vehicles that are NYS registered as motorcycles that the two school’s use to compete in the national Tour de Sol event. The cars are capable of sustained speeds over 50 mph, and run on solar panels and batteries. Both teams will be building Electrathon race cars for next year’s race. “Electrathon racing is a great way to get a lot of students involved in technology and engineering. My kids are excited about racing next year!” said Jeff Ostroski, technology teacher at Cato.
Caz had two teams and Baldwinsville had one team to race for one hour to see who’s car could make the most laps. The race was very close, and Caz car #12 made 77 laps, B’ville’s car #8 made 76 laps, and Caz’s car #37 made 76 laps. B’ville’s pit crew did an amazing job, fixing the car in record time during the race. Cazenovia’s car #12, their experimental car, exceeded the student’s expectations. “We never really did get the chance to test this car a lot, and we’ve been working on it for two years now.” said senior Tom Lawrence. “The new steering system worked perfectly, and our new drive system was awesome.” The car’s drive system was designed by the students, and then built with the help of three local companies: D & D Motors of Syracuse, Indian Springs Manufacturing of Baldwinsville, and Dependable Tool & Die Co. in Syracuse. “We really owe a huge chunk of our success with this car to these organizations. Between them, they did almost $10,000 worth of work to take the kids ideas, work with them, and implement it.” said Chris Hurd, Cazenovia’s Team Advisor. Both Windstream Communication’s donation and the CNY Community Foundation’s grant also made this race, and Cazenovia’s second car a reality. Building the second car would not have been possible without these two sponsors last year.” says Hurd.
We would also like to thank the Cazenovia Athletic Association who helped out in covering the costs for insurance and food for the event as well. Thanks too go to all of the volunteers and parents who made the event such a huge success. Hurd says: “If you have three teams and 200 people show up, wait until next year when there will be at least ten teams! Electrathon is a great way to bring communities, parents, and students, together in an exciting educational experience. I don’t know who is more excited, me or the kids!”
For more information, race results, and pictures, goto www.nyelectrathon.com. Look for the Caz HS Racing Team, and Baldwinsville’s team at the Syracuse Street Nationals at the NYS fairgrounds this summer!
B'ville Start Your Engines!
June 5th, 2007 Eagle Newspapers
Baker High School will compete in the first ever CNY Electrathon Challenge, to be held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday June 9 at the high school. The event is sponsored by the Baker High School Technology Department, the Cazenovia High School Electrathon Racing Team, and the Cazenovia Athletic Association.
The Electrathon Challenge can best be described as an electric marathon in which schools will compete with electric cars that students have built and will be driving. According to Baker High School technology teacher Jamie Cuyler, each team’s goal is not to cross a finish line first, but to go the longest distance in one hour on just battery power. Teams from Cazenovia, Rochester and Buffalo will also be participating in this inaugural event. Electrathon racing events are held all over the country, most sanctioned by Electrathon America, an organization designed to promote and develop electrathon racing as a sport that improves public understanding of electric vehicles. Races are mainly conducted for educational purposes. The Baldwinsville race is not a sanctioned Electrathon America event, but it will follow all of the organization’s guidelines and rules as outlined in the organization’s official handbook.
Baker High School’s team is made up of students from Cuyler’s engineering design and development class, which is part of the Project Lead the Way engineering sequence at the high school. Cuyler teaches the class with technology teacher Paul Mizer.
The students began building the team car in January, using a kit for the body and fabricating the rest of the car from materials that they modified themselves using their knowledge of engineering and design. Evans Chevrolet donated the red paint needed for the car’s body, and Nami’s Engraving & Awards donated the team’s polo shirts. The students who primarily worked on the car are Mitch Collins, Tom Engels, Jake Neely and Howard Rotchford. Other members of the class also helped when needed. The car made its official debut in the Baldwinsville Memorial Day Parade held on May 30.
Rotchford and recruited driver Mike Baldino will be driving the car in the challenge. According to Cuyler, drivers must weigh a minimum of 180 pounds. This includes clothing and a helmet. Weight must be added to the car if the driver is less than 180 pounds. Cuyler said the team has to follow certain safety standards. Drivers must have a valid state driver’s license. The driver must be belted in with a five-point racing harness that limits excessive movement. All drivers must wear a helmet approved by the Department of Transportation, and the car has to be equipped with emergency shutoffs and a roll bar in the event of a roll over. Before the race begins, an inspection team will thoroughly check every participating car to be sure each meets all of the safety requirements.
Cuyler said that building the car and preparing for the race has provided his students with a great opportunity to utilize their knowledge and skills in such areas as physics and math, as well as engineering and design principals. They also need to use this knowledge to determine how best to drive the car so that the battery will provide enough electricity for at least one hour of driving and for a maximum number of laps around the course. Additionally, students have learned the value of working as a team to solve problems.
The public is welcomed to attend the CNY Electrathon Challenge. In addition to the electrathon cars, there will be several solar powered cars on display. If it rains on June 9, the race portion of the event will be cancelled, but teams will still meet to show off their cars and exchange ideas. Baker High School is located at 29 E. Oneida St. in the village of Baldwinsville.
For more information on electrathon racing, visit nyelectrathon.com.
Caz Open House a Success
April 28th, 2007 By Chris Hurd
Vic DeJohn, an engineer at D & D Motors in Syracuse, helps a Caz Student install a motor in their second car at the Cazenovia Electrathon Open House. Mr. DeJohn also spoke to students and teachers about how electric motors work, and how to use them to build electric vehicles.
The Cazenovia HS Racing Team had their first open house yesterday. The goal of the open house was to get other local schools interested in electrathon racing in the hopes of holding a large local event in CNY in the future.
At the open house, at least five other local schools in the CNY area expressed an interest in participating. "Teachers and students alike need to realize it is not as expensive or hard to do as they think." said Chris Hurd, advisor of the Caz Team. "When I was first approached by the students who built our first car, I thought they were nuts. It was going to be way too hard, and way too costly. I was wrong."
The reality is though, that it is a great project for all students Hurd says. "It wasn't as expensive as other engineering projects taken on by some schools, and really excites kids and staff alike.”It was contagious" says Tom Lawrence, founding member of the Caz Team. “The first time I drove the car, I couldn't believe what I was doing. Thirty miles an hour may not seem fast in a regular car, but put yourself in this one, two inches off the ground, and it's very exhilarating. Especially if it's one you've designed and built."
In June the Caz team is joining forces with Baldwinsville to host the first ever electrathon event in New York State. Teams will be coming from as far away as Buffalo and Rochester to join them in this inaugural event. Hurd says "We have to start small, and grow it from there. After today, there will probably be at least five more cars from central New York to race with next year."
"Build a race car and race it?" says Gerard Kells, senior member of the Caz team. (Wrench in hand, smile on his face.) "What did you do in Tech class when you were a kid?"
Sunpacer Gets Makeover
April 12th, 2007 From the Syracuse Post-Standard By David L. Shaw
Cato-Meridian High School's solar-electric powered car, The Sunpacer, will not compete in the Tour de Sol race this year.
That's because the race, usually run on the Memorial Day weekend, has been called off for this year.
But the Sunpacer crew is still busy putting in a new electric motor and making other improvements to the 15-year-old vehicle, the winner of nine Tour de Sol championships. "We're trying to get the car back together so we can participate in some kind of informal race with other Upstate schools that have solar or electric cars," said technology teacher Jeffrey Ostrowski.
"We are trying to finalize a date and a location for a race amongst ourselves this spring," Ostrowski said. "One possible site being looked at is Oswego Speedway."
While those details are being worked out, the Sunpacer crew of Scott Mansfield, T.K. Hayden, Sasha Moore, Ashley Thomas and Brandon Rubadou is working with Ostrowski to install a new electric motor, a new electric controller system, new batteries, a new seat and a new emergency brake.
Mansfield, a senior, is crew chief and the team's "go-to guy."
"This is the only class that allows me to turn a wrench. I love working on things like this. It's a real hands-on experience," he said.
In addition, the crew will begin designing a brand-new all-electric car to compete in an all-electric car race called the Electrothon. That car, new from the ground up, will probably not be ready until next spring, Ostrowski said.
"The old motor in the Sunpacer burned out on us last year. It was the original motor from 1992, and when we took it to a repair shop, they were amazed that it ran at all," Ostrowski said. The motor was rebuilt, but the crew wanted to modify the control panel to capture energy from the brakes to store in the batteries.
That could not happen with the original motor. A new motor was acquired, but it didn't fit exactly into the old space, requiring more frame modifications.
The original nickel metal hydride batteries also needed replacement. Ostrowski said the manufacturer shifted its product line in another direction, forcing the group to find new lead-acid batteries that are heavier and slightly less powerful.
The pressure is off to get the Sunpacer ready for the Tour de Sol. Ostrowski said the Northeast Sustainable Energy Association, the race sponsor, lost its director and decided to back off for a year.
Baldwinsville EDD Class Builds Electrathon Racecar
April 4th, 2007 CW Baker High School, Baldwinsville, NY
In mid December, four students in C. W. Baker’s Engineering Design and Development class ordered an electric car to participate in the Electrathon America race. The Electrathon America mission statement is “To create and develop a sport that improves public awareness and understanding of electric vehicles through continuously improved vehicle and event rules.” These students have to follow the guidelines of an electrathon race and make the best car possible.
Baker High School will be hosting a race with six teams competing from CNY. The four students working on the electric car are seniors Howie Rotchford, Tom Engels, Mitch Collins, and Jake Neely. These students are learning about the processes involved with completing a major long term project. The students went through a variety of different preparation steps before they started to build the electric race car. They had to research all the parts that were necessary to complete the car and find where they could be ordered from. Then the students had to complete a proposal and requisition forms presented to the school board for the approval and a sum of money to buy all the required parts. When the student’s proposal was approved by the board, they ordered all of the parts mostly form the company Blue Sky Design in Oregon.
When the electric car kit arrived at the high school in January, the students immediately began to work on it. They have made a number of modifications to the design and assembled the parts together to begin forming a race car. Much of the student’s time has been consumed by the project, often having the students giving up free periods or staying after school for multiple hours to continue working. This project has helped the students learn closely to what is expected in a real life job deadline.
Their teacher, Jamie Cuyler, requires weekly progress reports from the students explaining what they accomplished, and what they did not accomplish. The Baldwinsville technology department plans on hosting the race sometime in June. The location of the race is yet to be announced.
April 4th, 2007
From the Syracuse Post-Srtandard
Electric Car Event For CNY In Works
Cazenovia teacher is trying to start local contest for student-made vehicles.
By Sapna Kollali
Central New York could play host this spring to a battle of electric cars. Cazenovia High School technology teacher Chris Hurd is working out the details of a potential NY Electrathon competition, a race involving student-made electric cars. The event would be held in June and be similar to the contest in Connecticut's Lime Rock Park that Cazenovia's team has been attending for the past two years.
Attending the Lime Rock competition again this year would have cost $3,800, which is half the cost of one car, Hurd said. "Rather than spend that money on a one-day trip, we thought we'll try to start one locally," he said. "Worst-case scenario, we'll have five cars. . . . Lime Rock started small in 2001." Hurd said he has been working closely with teachers in Baldwinsville and the Rochester area and expects them to enter their cars. He said several other local high school teachers are interested in fielding an electric car team, including Cicero-North Syracuse, East Syracuse-Minoa and Cato-Meridian.
Marty Miner, technology teacher at C-NS, said he has been looking for a way to enter the Electrathon program with a local event. About four years ago, students designed and partially built an electric car, but they didn't race it anywhere, he said. Miner said his students won't be ready for June, but he hopes to start building a car in September and race it next year. He said he thinks other schools are in the same situation and might be interested in joining next year. "Once you get started, it generates interest, more so than just talking about it. I'll bring some kids with me (to the NY Electrathon), get them excited, motivated," he said. "Then I can go to the district and tell them what we're doing, hopefully secure funding . . . and get started building in the fall." Hurd said the June event will likely be in Baldwinsville, although other sites are under consideration.
The local race will probably be one week after Lime Rock's Electrathon Challenge, a major competition in the Northeast, and he said he believes some New England teams are interested in attending the local race. "In the future, we'd like to do it in April or early May so it doesn't conflict with finals and things, but this year we just wanted to get together something small to show off the cars and the idea," Hurd said.
Cazenovia began its program in 2004. The team set a race record and won the novice division during its first competition at Lime Rock. Cazenovia now has two electric cars. Hurd said the Electrathon idea has not really taken off yet in New York, but it is a big event in the Midwest, Pacific Northwest and New England.
Two Cazenovia seniors, Tom Lawrence and Gerard Kells, recently launched a Web site to help generate interest in the NY Electrathon and provide teachers and students with information on upcoming events and how to build qualifying cars.
Hurd said he regularly receives calls from Baldwinsville students looking for advice on building their car, which will likely be finished in May. "When we were building our first car, we had no one to call when we had trouble. We just tried something and if it didn't work, we tried again," he said. "Are we going to tell them what gear ratio to use? No. Will we tell them what they need to build a car? Sure. There aren't too many secrets here. Plus, they'll have home field advantage." Sapna Kollali can be reached at -email- or 470-3257. ******************************************************************
From the Blue & Gold, Cazenovia School District's Newsletter
From the Blue & Gold, Cazenovia School District's Newsletter
Electrathon Racing Team Brings Home First PlaceCazenovia HS Electrathon Racing Team traveled October 27th, for their first Electrathon race ever in Lakeview, Connecticut at the famous Lime Rock Park. It was a beautiful, crisp Fall day in the mountains of Connecticut. The weather was great for being outdoors; unless of course, you wanted to keep batteries for an electric car fully charged. “Temperature is critical for battery charging,” says Blake Wahl, pit crew chief for the team. “As temperature drops, so does voltage. But everyone was in the same boat. Nobodies battery would hold a full charge.” Things got worse from there. Richard Budnar, Design Specialist said, “We assumed that over time the battery would discharge at a constant rate, for example, 10% every six minutes. We thought we were in trouble because after only six minutes, we had lost 20% of our battery power.” David Mignona and Brendan Davies, Communications specialists, had to tell driver Kevin Munn to slow down in order to conserve battery for the end of the race. “Our goal was to complete the one-hour race without running out of power.” said Brenden, “and early on we had to throw everything we thought we knew about power consumption out the window.”
Twenty minutes into the race with Kevin Munn going as slow as possible, things started looking up. One car blew a tire and spent seven minutes in the pit to fix it. Another team broke the chain on their drive system, and spent time in the pit as well. The really fast cars were now starting to slow down too. This is when data recorders Anna Costello and Tom Lawrence realized something strange was happening. “It seemed like the batteries were lasting longer and longer as the race wore on.” Said Tom. “that’s when we figured out that the batteries didn’t drain at a constant rate, but lasted longer in the middle of the discharge cycle.” With some quick calculations, the team realized that they could go much faster in the second half of the race. At the thirty-minute mark, the team did a driver change and Katie Gilliland got in the car for the second half of the race. There was already one car on the track that was quickly running out of juice, and two or three others that were having trouble going up the hill in turn four.
That’s when Richard Budnar gave the word. The communications team told Katie that she could pick up speed, and the analysts kept careful track of the battery condition. Katie started passing cars, sometimes three at a time and most often up hills, and around corners. “It was amazing to watch.” Said teammate Gerard Kells. “It was like we had brand new batteries, and everyone else’s were dying.” With about 7 minutes to go the team realized that they had passed 81 laps, which was the number of laps that won the race last year. The team was ecstatic. With seven minutes to go, three teams had dropped out, and Katie was pushing the car faster than it’s ever gone. “We checked the speedometer after the race, and her Max speed was over 37 mph!” said Blake Wahl. The rest is history!
The team finished first in their division with 95 laps, and they were one of only three or four cars still running when the checkered flag fell. “It was unbelievable!” Said Chris Hurd, team advisor. “They worked together as a team, and made great things happen. The best part was the way in which they put everything together to do as well as they did. The communications system, the car, and all of the data that they took and analyzed all contributed to how well they did. I couldn’t be more proud of a group of students.” Hurd said. They were also commended by the track officials for their driving ability and courteousness even as a novice team.
None of this would have been possible without all of the local support and sponsorship we have had over the last two years. This year, many companies all came forward with sponsorship money to pay for the entire trip.
These companies include: RBC Dain-Rauscher Syracuse, The Bikery Baldwinsville Jaquith Industries Syracuse, Burghardt’s Auto Service E. Syracuse, Kimberly’s Ice Cream Cazenovia, Northside Collision N. Syracuse, Emerson Graphics Cazenovia, Price T.com Cazenovia, Territory Mortgage Baldwinsville, Emrich’s Welding Cazenovia, CDM Constructors Syracuse, Sterns & Wheeler Cazenovia, Pelco Electronics Cazenovia, Marquardt Switches Cazenovia, Cazenovia Athletic Association, and the Cazenovia PTA.
We would also like to thank everyone else who donated money, time, and energy over the past two years to help us build the car as well. Special thanks also to all of the parents for their support, especially Mr. Tom Davies. Tom took the time to bring the car all the way to Lime Rock and back in his truck. Our team, even though we came quite a distance, had one of the bigger crowds of supporters at the racetrack. We look forward to an even bigger crowd this Spring, when we return to Lime Rock for the CT Electrathon Challenge to try our hand in the next higher division!
From the Blue & Gold, Cazenovia School District's Newsletter
In March the Engineering Design & Development (EDD) class finished their biggest writing assignment to date. The students helped Technology teacher Chris Hurd write and apply for a grant from the CNY Community Foundation. The students researched what would be needed to build a second car, and what it would cost to race at Limerock Park over the next school year. They were surprised by the total they came up with. “It would have been close to impossible for us to raise that kind of money in one year.” said Katie Gilliland. The students figured that it would cost about $12,000 to accomplish their goal of building another competitive car and continue racing next year. With their grant proposal to the CNY Community Foundation finished and mailed, they waited.
In April, while the students were making improvements to last year’s car, they received the good news. The racing team received the grant from the CNY Community Foundation for the total amount that they asked for: $7,300. “This is kind of like a dream come true.” says team member Richard Budnar. “This is a great thing because without it, we would never be able to reach our goal of building a second car. Now we can focus more of our time on the engineering, math, and physics aspects of our project, and worry less about where the money is coming from.”
Team member Gerard Kells adds: “Now we can have more people involved in the electric car project because we’ll need two more drivers, and another pit crew as well.” The EDD class and the Racing Team would once again like to extend our gratitude to the CNY Community Foundation for their generosity. More information about the CNY Community Foundation can be found at http://www.cnycf.org.
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