Team leader Pria Sabharwal, graduating this year in Aeronautical Engineering, said: “It’s been really hard work but at the same time really rewarding – I’ve loved it at Brighton.” Pria said being female in what is traditionally a male-oriented field had been a bonus: “We were invited to the Williams factory and they specifically asked for female engineers. And things are changing. When I started my course there were only five females but now there are 20.”
The students formed ‘Brighton Racing Motors’ to design and build their car, named Apex, to give them experience of running a mock business. Apex is a bespoke design incorporating aerodynamic bodywork, a tubular frame chassis, a motorcycle engine, and fully adjustable suspension, which will be driven by the students at speeds up to 70 mph. It must comply with stringent rules set out by the competition organisers. The team has made use of the advanced engineering and rapid prototyping facilities the university, including wind tunnel testing, engine simulation, 3D printing, plasma cutting and CNC machining.
Dr Coren said: “Tremendous effort from innovative students and support from technical and academic staff has been catalysed by sponsorship provided from Santander Universities, allowing key technical features, especially aerodynamic bodywork, to be incorporated into their new car. Support from businesses in the local community has also contributed to this team effort, including Juarez Fabrication, Pipecraft, and Family Store, allowing the team to make history by building the first ever University of Brighton Formula Student car to compete at Silverstone.”
You can follow the progress of the team either on the blog, Facebook or by emailing Dr Coren at firstname.lastname@example.org
You can also attend attend the Silverstone event.