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FSAE Team Thanks College for Contributions to Success

Thursday, March 7, 2013

The College of Engineering recently was recognized by the Formula SAE F12 team for contributions to the team’s success. A letter from team captain Lena Gerry and faculty advisor Dr. Bob Woods outlined the team’s successes in the 2011-12 season, and also described some of the innovations featured on the car.

The team’s mission statement read, 

UTA Racing will drive the students to their limits to form a dominant team and to develop a quality racecar with the sole goal of competing to win the Formula SAE competition. By winning, we will positively represent the university, our sponsors, and ourselves. We will also provide a dynamic learning environment where participants will gain valuable real world engineering experience, as well as a strong sense of team pride, dedication, and professionalism, which will ultimately lead to successful future careers.

Some season highlights, according to the letter:

The F12 car incorporated a re-profiled aerodynamics package designed from scratch using computer optimization to create more down force while improving wing efficiency. WithFSAE F12 Racecar the relaxation in the rules regarding aerodynamics, UTA was the only school to not build massive wings, but rather had the smallest aerodynamic package at the competition while still able to produce nearly 100% of the weight of the car at 60 m.p.h. The heart of the car is a Yamaha 450R single-cylinder engine, which uses a UTA-designed carbon-fiber air intake, a first for the team. The ergonomics system was repackaged to shorten the car’s frame by a total of nine inches, saving even more weight and making it one of the team’s lightest cars ever at 413 pounds. At the Formula SAE West competition in Lincoln, Nebraska, against 81 other teams, UTA took third place in design and endurance and second place in fuel economy and presentation for an overall 2nd place finish, just 17 points out of the top spot.

The 11th annual Texas Autocross at UTA welcomed 15 other universities and a total of 37 cars. UTA took second place in both the morning and afternoon tracks in the Saturday races, less than half a second behind the University of Kansas in both events. On Sunday, the team took first in the FSAE class and had the fastest time among all classes competing. In the annual SCCA Nationals, also in Lincoln, the team was third in the FSAE class and won a national title in the FSAE Ladies class.

Off the track, the team held its first alumni/sponsor banquet to celebrate 30 years of Formula SAE at UTA. The banquet reunited teams all the way back from the Mini Baja days in 1978 and featured a dinner where past and current teams became friends, as well as a presentation to share stories from many different years, and a display of past and present UTA cars. The banquet also featured the debut of Dr. Woods’ book detailing the history and innovations developed by UTA since the beginning. 

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