University of Canterbury – Motorsport Manufacturing Newsletter
UC Motorsport Overview
UC Motorsport is a student lead and run group whose aim is to design and build a formula style race car. UC Motorsport has competed in the Australasian competition since 2013, is one of the University’s premier engineering projects and is undoubtedly asignificant motivator for young students considering an engineering degree at the University of Canterbury. The project produces experienced and talented graduates that have a great understanding and appreciation for vehicle technology, engineering design, and manufacturing processes that they take with them as they go into industry. This year UC Motorsport has set themselves the goal of producing two competition ready vehicles to race in the Formula Student Competition in Australia at the end of 2018. There is one combustion class entry, UCM18C and one electric class entry, UCM18E.
UC Motorsport Suspension
This year the suspension team has focused on designing a reliable, easy to work on, high performance suspension system for UCM18C.
Over the last few months the team have been investigating a new manufacturing method for the suspension arms. Thanks to Rodin Car’s Metal Laser Sintered Titanium printer, bearing housings (pictured) were printed and bonded to carbon fibre tubes. Initial test data vastly exceeded our expectations in terms of strength and weight and as a result we proceeded with the implementation of the design.
A shift to an off the shelf OZ racing rim has opened the door to a central locking wheel retaining system, this also brings the added benefit of minimizing the cars un-sprung mass. This is paired to a CNC milled aluminium upright courtesy of Metco Engineering, which takes advantage of topological optimisation performed in ANSYS. This optimization method uses the results of a Finite Element Analysis to determine the volumes of a part which transmit the least amount of load, and hence where mass can be removed.
We will continue to use Ohlins dampers for UCM18 as the team has significant experience with them and they have proven reliable for all of our cars. They are also one of very few models tuned specifically for use in the Formula Student competition. The rockers, which activate the dampers, use a three piece design made from 7075-T6 Al. This high strength material allows us to use a lightweight design which has been CNC milled.
Completely redesigning and manufacturing the suspension system in such a short time period would not have been possible without the generous support of Metco Engineering, Rodin Cars, Ansys, John Brooks and many others