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Ulster University Students Hit Top Gear with Composite Race Car

14 October 2005

Three Ulster University graduates who designed and built a formula one-style racing car have returned from Italy after competing against engineering students from across the world.

Gavin McKeown, Paul Short and Eoin Heron, who have just graduated from the School of Engineering, finished in 11th place after their racing their single-seat vehicle in the special student competition.

The contest was set in the grounds of the Fiat/Ferrari test track at Balocco, near Turin where teams battled it out during the four-day event.

The 2005 UU car was built around a Yamaha R6 Sports bike engine, fed by a multi point fuel injection system. The entire chassis of the car was manufactured from carbon composite at the Engineering Composites Research Centre at based the University’s Jordanstown campus

Justin Quinn, Lecturer in the School of Electrical and Mechanical Engineering at UU said: “This is a tremendous achievement for the UU team – they had to manufacture each part of the vehicle by themselves helped only by the technical support of the University’s mechanical engineering department.

“Building team work skills is an important aspect of the competition in order to produce an overall successful design and I think the students have found this project both challenging and rewarding. The competition was fierce and the winning teams’ designs and race experience are something for UU to aim at in the future years.

The young engineers said the competition had been “a great experience” and they were pleased with the final result.

“We would like to thank all of our sponsors, without whom the team’s success would not have been possible and we now look forward to carrying out further modifications and performance tweaking before competing in next years competitions,” they said.





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