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To fully utilize the talents and abilities of everyone on the team, Formula is divided into unique subsystems. 


Aero is responsible for the aerodynamic performance of the car. This includes in-depth analysis and design of the wing elements for generating downforce as well as the wings' support structures. The Aero team also performs analysis of airflow around the car for reducing drag and cooling the engine.



Battery Systems is the driving force behind a dependable power source that propels the car to victory in competitions. Our responsibility encompasses designing an accumulator from the ground up, which entails a robust architecture, accurate pack sizing, and creative housing of essential electronics. This process involves interfacing with tractive system components and high voltage electronics, effectively channeling energy to power our car.


The goal of the brakes system is to decelerate the car without losing stability or consistency. The subassemblies of the brakes system include the brake pedal, brake lines, calipers, and rotors. The brakes subsystem is also responsible for designing the throttle pedal, which allows the driver to accelerate the car.



The chassis subsystem is responsible for building the frame of the vehicle, tying all subsystems together into one cohesive unit. The chassis team works to create the lightest, stiffest, and strongest body possible to protect our drivers. Cal Poly Racing is one of a handful of teams across the US that designs and manufactures a full carbon fiber monocoque similar to rockets, planes, F1 and super cars! The chassis is a complex design that involves composites, vehicle dynamics, and structural analysis.


With over 30 boards across both cars, this subsystem encompasses everything from digital and analog high-speed circuits to power distribution and battery management modules. Our responsibility is to design, manufacture, test, and maintain these circuit boards throughout the year to ensure the cars are race-ready all the time.


Driver controls is responsible for the components on the car that the driver directly interacts with as well as the components necessary for driver safety. This includes the steering and shifting systems, the steering wheel, and driver ergonomics such as the seat and controls locations.


C-Drivetrain is responsible for strategically and efficiently connecting the combustion engine to the rear wheels. This includes selecting the final drive gear ratio, maintaining the sprockets, chain, and tensioning system, assembling and tuning the differential and half-shafts, and designing and building the support structures for the engine and differential. C-Drivetrain directly influences vehicle performance characteristics such as acceleration, top speed, and power delivery while turning.


Drivetrain is responsible for getting the power from the electric motor to the wheels as efficiently as possible. Specifically, this means the drivetrain subsystem is responsible for designing/tuning/maintaining sprockets, driveshafts, the differential, and all the architecture needed to house all these components.



The electronic packaging subsystem is responsible for creating enclosures that are durable, water-resistant, temperature-resistant, and vibration-resistant to protect electronic components such as circuit boards and sensors. It also creates housings for the dashboard, brake light, tractive system active light, and low voltage battery. This system keeps in mind efficient packaging, placement, and mounting design.


The engine subsystem is responsible for creating power for the combustion car. We currently utilize a Yamaha YZ450FX engine. Our engine is fitted with a custom fabricated aluminum intake, stainless steel exhaust, fueling system, and cooling system. We work primarily with C-Drivetrain to study final drive and with the electronics team to develop tunes for the engine using a MoTec M130 ECU. Our goals are to be both powerful and reliable.


Firmware is responsible for writing, testing, and overseeing the code that runs the circuit boards on the cars. Our code is important for sending error messages, collecting data, and sending commands. We program our boards in C++ on an MKE chip.


HV-Electronics is responsible for the design, testing, and validation of E-Car electronics pertaining to high voltage. This includes HV wiring, HV boards, code specific to electric vehicle electronics, Vehicle Control Unit, HV Management System, and Battery Management System.


The goal of the manufacturing lead is to schedule, organize, and implement solutions to the manufacturing needs of the team. Since we are a team that manufactures the vast majority of our parts in-house, this means working with each subsystem to determine what must happen to turn their designs into physical parts. Not every ideal CAD model can be manufactured with commonly available tooling, so this subsystem lead must help to alter part designs for ease of manufacturing, and work to find other means to create those parts that cannot be altered. Finally and perhaps most importantly, the manufacturing team will work to produce the individual components that make up the car using the wide variety of machines and tooling available in our machine shops.


The materials subsystem acts like a materials engineering department at any large company, helping to diagnose failure, test material samples, characterize material properties, or help improve processes to make the team more efficient and safe. This team works closely with individual subsystems to assist in composite laminate development, thermal and electrical requirements, or corrosion prevention.


The Sensor Integration subsystem is responsible for collecting vehicle data and providing that data to other subsystems so that they can validate their designs and fine-tune their components. This subsystem is also responsible for maintaining, calibrating, and testing every sensor on the car.


While the objective of suspension on a passenger car is to provide a comfortable ride, its objective on a race car is to maximize performance by keeping the car interfaced with the ground as effectively as possible. This is ultimately done by optimizing load and movement of the tires. Boasting over 200 parts per car, this subsystem includes springs, dampers, links, as well as the uprights, hubs, wheels, and tires. This subsystem is also responsible for the geometry, or kinematics, of the suspension.



No race car is competitive when it first rolls onto the track. Vehicles, and every component within them, require extensive testing in order to fully characterize and optimize performance. The testing team is responsible for all component-level and on-track tests of the vehicle to ensure reliable and high-performance operation. This includes initial shakedowns to prove reliability, practical dynamic events to gain a competitive edge for our competitions, and most importantly, the valuable collection of data for subsystem leads to utilize to improve future performance. From car setup and tuning to driver training to car maintenance, the testing team is vital in the success of our cars.


The Wire-Harnessing subsystem is responsible for the design, manufacturing, testing, integration, and maintenance of the wire harnesses on both the combustion and electric cars. This includes the Front and Rear harness for the E-Car, and the Front, Rear, Engine, and Dyno harness for the C-Car. This subsystem works closely with mechanical leads, the circuit boards lead, and the sensor integration lead throughout the season to ensure the wire harness is meeting all requirements.

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