The University of Alberta EcoCar team is a multidisciplinary vehicle project team which competes in the Shell Eco-marathon, an annual international fuel-efficiency competition. Our team develops and builds a zero emissions hydrogen fuel cell powered vehicle designed to be a realistic concept. It has functional lights, steering wheel, and many other features that you would expect in a modern car. The applications of engineering, design, finance, outreach, and administration, among many other interdisciplinary skills are required to construct a winning vehicle and maintain a strong team.
The University of Alberta EcoCar team was founded in 2010 with the goal to build and compete in the “Urban Concept” category at the Shell Eco-marathon. While the team had much to learn in the beginning, we hit the ground running: in 2012 we placed second at the Shell Eco-Marathon Americas competition and in 2014 we won first place! With a reputation of success, teamwork, and mentorship, the University of Alberta EcoCar team has attracted many new members; our team is larger and more ambitious than it has ever been before. It is very exciting to see so many newer members grow in skills, taking on more responsibilities and initiating new innovative projects.
Building a ground-breaking vehicle is quite costly! Since we design all of our components by ourselves and rarely purchase prefabricated systems, we have managed to not only cut down the costs but also increase the learning experience. Our team members have documented invaluable research into manufacturing techniques, composite materials, materials selection, electrical systems, and much more. But acquiring these high performance materials, fabricating our components and sustaining our team require time and resources. This year, we will race our new vehicle that has just completed construction. We need your help to continue to develop innovative projects and technologies by further improving our current car. Your contribution will also play an integral role in the development of our next generation vehicle.
The following tables and graphs will show you an approximate breakdown of our costs; we feel how we spend our resources is important information to donors like you.
The major impact of this project will be providing experiential learning opportunities that enrich our education and provide us with opportunities to improve both our engineering skills and other professional skills that are essential in the workforce. It will also enable us to reach out to more students as well as to the public. The EcoCar vehicle project is the medium in which countless valuable experiences and lifelong friendships are gained for members of our team. Alberta is known for its fossil fuels and abundance of natural resources. However, with an increasing demand for energy, we at EcoCar believe in the need to develop alternative energy solutions for the future.
We need your help! Your contribution will help us continue to compete and represent the University of Alberta on the international stage, as well as promote and develop a more environmentally friendly future for automotive technologies. With more resources, we will be able to take on more innovative projects and increase public awareness. Our team truly appreciates the donation you have made. Stay tuned for more updates from technological showcases to team interviews and finally some on-the-ground information from our competition!
On behalf of the whole EcoCar team, we thank you for your contribution.
Friends, fellow engineers, and kind supporters,
Thank you so much for your contribution to the EcoCar team! We are incredibly excited to announce that we have surpassed our $10000 fundraising target! We are truly humbled by your generosity and we are happy to see that we have a strong support base for our project in the local community. The team would also like to especially thank the Spirit of George Ford Endowment Fund and the Department of Mechanical Engineering for giving us a very generous match grant.
What a week it has been for the team! Not only have we managed to reach our fundraising target but we have also shipped our car, ALICE, to Detroit! On Monday, the team was able to pack the entire crate with our sleeping bags, tents, tools, and of course, ALICE. As we watched the crate leaving our workspace, the competition began to feel less far off and a lot more tangible. This is what we have been tirelessly preparing for - putting our handcrafted creation to the ultimate test, the Shell Eco-marathon.
As we speak, our ALICE is past customs in Rocky View, AB, and traveling towards the United States (yes, we refresh the shipment tracking page every few hours). Even though the car has shipped, the team is still busy working on making backup circuit boards for our electrical systems (we like to play it safe).
Last week, we had received the great news that we won the Shell Canada Mini-challenge for attracting the most new likes to our Facebook page. We beat out every other Canadian University team and as a prize, we received a fully paid team dinner on behalf of Shell Canada. This came right after our last work session where the team got together to put the final finishing touches on ALICE. It was a fantastic way to send off ALICE as well as to get the team spirit high as we head to Detroit to race. At about 2:00pm on Saturday, the team managed to get together for one final full team photo before the race:
Again, thank you for all of your support and we will still be accepting donations to our campaign for the next five days!
We have just wrapped up our second week of crowdfunding and
are at 70% of our goal! Thank you so
much for all of your support to the team.
We are days away from shipping Alice to the Shell Eco-marathon
in Detroit, and the team has been busy putting the final touches on her and
doing some last-minute testing of the systems.
We did find time to take a nice team photo with Alice before she is packed into the crate for shipping. There are less than TWO WEEKS until the Shell Eco-marathon and the team
could not be more excited to see Alice race for the first time. We will be keeping everyone posted as we near
Gabor Gyenes Erika Mullner
Rebecca McCourt and Peter Shaw
Dave & Rachelle Bardwell
Mary Lou Reeleder
Steven and Linda Pye
24 supporters have chosen not to be listed for "UAlberta EcoCar".
Make an Impact
Food costs per meal per person
Our car runs on hydrogen but we need actual food, and more importantly, coffee to keep us alert!
We need headlights to look fancy. But actually, it is a requirement of the class we race in. LED for more eco-karma?
Carbon Fibre (per square meter)
We use this super light but extremely strong composite for the future for many components on our car (even the shafts!). All those square meters add up as layer upon layer will be used for increased stiffness.
Team Jersey for a team member
A gift of this amount could let us better represent the University of Alberta EcoCar team with great looking jerseys!
Like all the other super cars of the future, we have a screen mounted in our steering wheel to give the driver live status of systems and efficiency. Is that cool or what?
We won't be stopped! Unless we need to avoid an accident ... Your contribution will give us a safe vehicle that can stop (it's a requirement of the competition).
With this contribution you could literally be "steering" us to success at the competition!
Order and build a PCB
Our hydrogen powered fuel cell vehicle relies on these humble green chips - it's as simple as that.
Our power-train relies on the performance of this little beast. Your donation will literally propel us forward.
We'd love to be in hyper-drive mode all day but our car needs to adjust its speed now and then.
Yeah, we wish we were a hover car as well, but current technological status requires us to have 4 good ol' pneumatic rubber tires for the competition.
Flight tickets per person
Our team going to the competition this year is the largest in our history. As a result, our airfare will be quite intimidating. We need your help to get to the race! Alternatively it is $0.15/km (we did the math).