FSAE Italy & Germany: the “hot-summer” for FRT

Firenze Race Team had a very demanding year and a “summer on fire”. During 2017 there has been an important generational renewal in the Team. New members have come from different departments of University of Florence and they have brought enthusiasm and new motivations in the Team.

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With this deep renewal of the Team, the race department of the University of Florence involved, to realize the projects for the competitions of Formula Student which will be described in the second part of the article, members from the Mechanical, Electronical, Informatic Engineering as well as from Economic Department. The collaboration and coordination managed to go beyond the difficulties of planning and to obtain good results both in the competition and from the individual point of view.

The “fire-summer” started on July 19th , when some of team members participated at the Formula Student Italy, in Parma, at Varano de’ Melegari circuit and presented their new prototype FR-17T.

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The Team was registered in Class 3 of the competition, where it was requested to show a presentation of the vehicle project and the participation only in Static Events. The students were called to show the judges their vehicle project, that is evaluated both about performances/technology (Design Event) and for the related “realization cost” (Cost Event); finally it should have been expected to prepare a presentation of an industrial and financial plan (Business Presentation).

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Firenze Race Team has obtained a very good result of category:

  • Design Event: 2° Classified
  • Cost Report Event: 1° Classified
  • Business Presentation: 7° Classified

The scores obtained allowed the team to be the 2° Overall in Class 3 Category.

But summer is not finished for the FRT members. Some of them, just returned from Varano, had immediately finished the details of the other project, presented during the Formula Student Germany event, in Hockenheim from August 7th to 13th. For this year FSG had organized something innovative: the “Driverless” competition category. Our Team presented in first preview the prototype FR17-DT, a real vehicle with autonomous driving. Differently from the other teams of the same category, pushed by electrical motors, our autonomous systems has been integrated with an internal combustion engine. The other challengers came from Germany, Swiss, China and Austria.

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To be registered in this class, the teams had to present a single-seat car with autonomous driving and then they had to compete both in static events, that we have explained before, and in dynamic events, studied ad hoc for this competition, regarding Acceleration, Skid Pad and Track Drive. Differently from the other Formula Student Competition about the Business Presentation Event, the new FSG Rules expected that the students were capable to analyze in the economic plan, a contemporary and future issue: “the inter-connectivity problems between vehicles”. The teams have to find solutions, ideas, and escamotages in their plan to overcome this kind of matter. Our business guys had satisfied the requests of judges with success.

Before these tests the Team was busy day and night to finish and to modify the vehicle in order to pass the Technical Inspections: the inflexible controls of the German judges related on all the aspects of the Competition Rules. The FSG Rules had also disciplined, for this particular cars, both the mechanical and autonomous aspects. In order to respect the rules, it was necessary to install safety systems in addition to those already put on the car, both remote system and other integrated in the car, because the car had to be driven also by drivers.

The days in Germany were long and difficult. The rain and the cold temperature has characterized this great event, but they didn’t “switch off” the enthusiasm and the tenacity of our guys.

The innovative FR17-DT has aroused the curiosity of visitors, companies, sponsors and students from other team, encouraged technical compare.

The air breathed during the competition, that have collected the presence of 150 teams from all over the world for the category Combustion and Electric, was characterized by reciprocal collaboration and healthy competition.

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