In the Swedish town of Deslbo there is a very special competition every year. As part of the Delsbo Electric Contest, students compete to showcase rail vehicles that consume less energy. The basic conditions are always the same: six passengers weighing fifty kilograms each have to be transported over a distance of 3.36 kilometers. How fast this happens does not matter in the end. Instead, only the energy required for the drive is measured. The first place is occupied by the team whose vehicle consumed the least amount of electricity. This year, as in previous years, this was a construction called Eximus IV. It was developed by a team of students from Dalarna University and Chalmers University.
Converted only 0.34 liters per 100 kilometers were consumed
The decisive advantage over the competition was given to Eximus IV mainly by two points. On the one hand lightweight construction materials from the aircraft industry were used this time. As a result, the total weight could be greatly reduced. On the other hand, the vehicle was tested intensively in the wind tunnel. The resulting improvements in terms of aerodynamics have also significantly reduced energy consumption. Ultimately, the winning vehicle thus came to a value of 0.603 watt hours per person per kilometer. Anyone who can not do much with this information can benefit from another value: the equivalent would be a consumption of 0.34 liters per 100 kilometers. However, this number comes with a small limitation therefore. If the children on board had taken the bike, they would probably have been closer to the goal.
The innovation prize went to a hovering vehicle
So it is a specially developed for this competition rail vehicle and not yet a production-ready prototype. In addition to the winners, especially the team Levitas of the Chalmers University caused a stir. Because the students there have developed a magnetic levitation system, with the help of which the vehicle could hover about two millimeters above the rails. This idea is not completely new, but the team has found a solution that would be particularly favorable to implement. The reward for the development work: The team received the HHK Innovation Award and can hope for further development of the system in the future. Perhaps you will see a further improved version at the end of May 2020 at the next edition of the Delsbo Electric Contest.
Via: New Atlas