UI Combustion Engine Research
UI Combustion Research Group
The Combustion Engine Group has locations in Moscow (under the direction of
Steven Beyerlein) and Boise (under the direction of Judi Steciak). This research
group has received funding from the
Department of Defense, the National Institute for Advanced Transportation
Technology, the Department of Transportation, and the Idaho State Board of
Education. The primary research topic is combustion of alternative fuels not
previously used in reciprocating IC engines, like water-ethanol blends and
JP-8. Historically the group as worked closely with Automotive Resources Inc. in Sandpoint, ID in
developing a new ignition source that makes combustion of these fuels possible.
Facilities include a small engine test lab (in Moscow) and a Combustion
Diagnostics Lab (in Boise).
The Clean Snowmobile Challenge is a student competition run by SAE. Students
re-engineer snowmobiles to comply with ever increasing restrictions on emissions
and noise pollution. The team has won 1st place overall numerous times and
regularly wins awards in design, fuel economy, hill climb, emissions, and
endurance events. Under the direction of Karen Den Braven, this group has been adapting new technology of direct injection and turbocharging as a means to create a
clean, light-weight, 2-stroke platform.
Hybrid Formula Car
We are currently engaged in a multi-year
development cycle to create a viable hybrid powertrain (with matched IC engine,
motor/generator, and transmission components) and vehicle integration for the
2011 Hybrid FSAE competition. The
2012 effort focused on IC engine repackaging, electric motor integration,
Lithion Ion batteries, suspension tuning, vehicle safety, vehicle
aesthetics, and vehicle testing. The UI team was one of only a few to
complete all the technical inspections and compete in various driving events.
The team's design was also ranked 5th out of 28 teams.