After six years of design and building, a team of student engineers at the Brigham Young University have recently unveiled their new electric streamliner (a special racecar designed for straight-ahead speed).
According to the students, the electric racecar was able to reach a top speed of about 139 mph at the Bonneville Salt Flats, this month. It is also equipped with 880 lithium ion batteries and has a lightweight carbon fiber body.
“Very few people get the chance to work with carbon fiber projects, especially something this big. I’s not something you can do with just a couple people, so it taught me a lot about problem solving and working efficiently as a team. I feel tremendously lucky,” said Kristin Heuer, a senior manufacturing engineering technology student who began her work on the car as part of a Capstone course.
Another reason why this car is called a streamliner would be that it features enclosed wheels and slender shape that help reducing air resistance. Unlike normal cars that have rubber tires (these are prone to expanding and exploding at high velocities), BYU’s new electric racecar has solid aluminum rear tires.
Besides all these, it could offer great safety due to its turning radius of 600 feet compared to conventional ones that have a turning radius of just 35 feet. For the future, the team hopes to achieve a speed of 200 mph and to set a new world record for the E-1 class.