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Challenge X: Crossover to Sustainable Mobility

June 01, 2005

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and General Motors (GM) are teaming up with other sponsors to challenge the best and brightest engineering students from universities throughout North America in the new competition series, Challenge X: Crossover to Sustainable Mobility.

Seventeen university teams from the U.S. and Canada will follow a hands-on, real-world engineering process, based on GM’s Global Vehicle Design Process, at each phase of a three-year competition. By applying proven methods for engineering successful prototype vehicles, students will learn real-world engineering skills that will make them highly valuable to the automotive community.

Students will work on a GM crossover sport utility vehicle platform and integrate cutting-edge advanced automotive technologies and alternative fuels, such as hydrogen, ethanol, and biodiesel, to develop an approach that minimizes total environmental impact and builds a sustainable transportation future.

Competition Details

Year One of Challenge X will emphasize vehicle simulation, powertrain testing, and engineering trade-offs that occur in the early stages of vehicle design. The students will be challenged to do intensive modeling, simulation and testing that will guide their hardware development – a key phase of the GM Vehicle Development Process. The powertrains developed in the first year will be installed into vehicles in the second year, giving the teams a head start on the vehicle integration process.

At the end of Year One, teams will receive their crossover sport utility vehicles and will build upon their models and simulation efforts to bring their designs to life. During Years Two and Three, the educational emphasis will be placed on validating the modeling and simulation tools and using them to control and refine the vehicles.

Participants & Sponsors

A selection process open to all accredited engineering schools in the U.S. and Canada began in September 2003, and 17 teams were selected in February 2004. Challenge X participants were announced in Spring 2004.

The U.S. Department of Energy and General Motors are the headline sponsors for the Challenge X competition; Argonne National Laboratory, a Department of Energy R&D facility, will provide competition management, team evaluation and technical and logistical support. Nearly 30 industry sponsors provide
participating teams with leading-edge math simulation software, automotive propulsion systems, fuels, emissions-control technologies, fuel cells and other tools and technologies to compete in the program; they also provide mentoring support to the students.

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