Students competed in a chemical car racing competition

Recently a team of four CEC students competed in the annual Chem E Car competition hosted by AlChE.

The team was comprised of Jonathan Ouimet, Brooke Long, Sydnee Roese, and Natalie Folkins. Their goal was to design a shoe box size car to be run and stopped by chemical reactions. These cars must move a specific volume of water a specified distance. The water volume varied between 0 and 500mL, and the distance was between 15 to 30 meters.

At the start of the competition, 19 schools’ car designs were evaluated for safety reasons, making sure the chemicals were properly handled and contained. Once each team passed the inspection, they were given 2 hours to create and implement their ideas.

Chem Car Comp

team with their advisor, Dr. Paluch                             

The Miami team did a lot to prepare for this competition. The first challenge that they faced was the fact that this was the first year Miami competed in the competition, so the team did not have a previous design to work from. However, the team worked together, with the help of professors, to design a car that would meet all the competition’s regulations.

When Miami’s team competed they had the target of making their car travel 22 meters. They got the car to move 5 meters. Though they did not meet the target, they still competed well in the competition because most of the cars did not move.

The team was able to learn a lot from this experience. “I gained a lot of experience when it comes to mechanical and electrical engineering. I also had the opportunity to design various really cool devices in AutoCAD and 3D print them,” explained Ouimet.

We are so proud of the accomplishments of our students, and what they gain from these new experiences. We hope that we can compete in this competition again in the future.

By Maggie Cavanaugh, CEC Communications Reporter