To fully utilize the talents and abilities of everyone on the team, we structure ourselves into groups that work on specific aspects of the car. These are our 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 and sideforce. Analysis of cooling for other components of the car is aero's responsibility as well.
Aero Structures literally supports the aerodynamic components of the car, attaching the front, rear, and side wings to the rest of the chassis. The goal of Aero Structures is to provide an optimal balance of weight, rigidity, and ease-of-installation that best allows the aero subsystem to perform at its finest.
The goal of the brakes system is decelerate the car without losing stability or steerability. 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 by connecting to the throttle body of the engine through the throttle cable.
C-Electronics is in charge of three things: making sure that the car's charging system can start the car and keep it running, adapting an ECU onto the engine with all the necessary sensors and components to allow for full tuning and driver capabilities, and providing a robust and reliable data logging system with sensors for all the other subsystems so that they can validate and improve on their designs.
C-Structures is responsible for the electro-mechanical integration of vehicle systems. This includes the design of the dashboard, electronics cooling, and all electronics packaging, mounting, and enclosures.
Chassis is responsible for integration of all systems on a vehicle level. Creating the platform that brings together systems such as suspension, aerodynamics, and powertrain, chassis is the base of the FSAE vehicle.
The composites subsystem is responsible for manufacturing and process development of all carbon fiber and fiberglass components on the FSAE Combustion and Electric cars. Specific parts include: chassis for both cars, battery box, electronics mounts and aero package. In general, composites works to further develop the team knowledge base of manufacturing methods for a variety of applications across our cars.
Driver Controls is responsible for the components on the car that the driver directly interacts with. This includes the design of the steering and shifting systems, ergonomics, and steering wheel.
Drivetrain is responsible for getting the power from the engine (for C-Car) and motor (for E-Car) to the wheels as efficiently as possible. Specifically, this means the drivetrain subsystem is responsible for designing/tuning/maintaining sprockets, internal engine gearing, driveshafts, the differential as well as all the architecture needed to house all these components.
The software on the CP18E car was made to be robust, reliable, and efficient. Our responsibility is to control the motor, relay information to the drive, collect data, and monitor the hardware based safety systems. With our telemetry system we are able to view the status of many components on the car in real time allowing for quick debugging and faster tuning.
The goal of the CP18 electronic structures subsystem is to redesign, manufacture, and repackage E-structures (Battery Box, Braille Battery, LV Box, TSMPS Box, IDB, HVD) that pass technical inspection and operate at optimal temperatures and electronic conditions. The system will be reliable, easy to service, and efficiently packaged for low weight and CG.
Engine is responsible for creating power for the combustion car. We currently utilize a 2014 Yamaha YFZ450R engine with a high compression piston, which is fitted with a custom 3D printed intake, stainless steel exhaust, fueling system, and cooling system. We work primarily with Drivetrain to study final drive and with C-Electronics to develop tunes for the engine using a MoTec M400 ECU. Our goals are to be both powerful and reliable.
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 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 the shop.
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. It also includes the geometry, or kinematics, of the suspension.
No race car is competitive when it first rolls onto the track. Vehicles require extensive testing in order to fully characterize and optimize performance. The testing team is responsible for getting the car running and reliable. After initial shakedown to ensure all systems are operational, the testing team is in charge of collecting valuable performance data for subsystem leads to utilize to improve future performance. The testing team also works on car setup, tuning, and identifying reliability issues. Testing team is also responsible for training the teams competition drivers and getting team members prepared for maintaining the car during the race weekend.