Issue: Dec 2005


SolidWorks to sponsor elite automotive engineering teams in Formula SAE



by Lenny Case

Formula SAE and Formula Student teams increasingly demand SolidWorks software for its ease of use and integrated design analysis

Responding to growing demand from elite engineering students around the world, SolidWorks Corporation will sponsor as many as 150 college and university teams designing Formula One-style race cars for global competition.

The sponsorship program, which features student software licensing, satisfies an increasing demand for SolidWorks 3D mechanical design software among students who compete in the Formula SAE and Formula Student competitions around the world. More than three-quarters of the participating teams are affiliated with colleges and universities that teach with SolidWorks Education Edition software in their schools of engineering. Additionally, many competitors from other schools have demanded SolidWorks software despite the fact that their schools officially teach with other products.

'It is fantastic to see SolidWorks providing such great support for our Formula Student initiative. I'm sure the teams will find their software tools to be a tremendous help in designing and building their cars,' said Brian Robinson, Formula Student manager at the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE), which organizes the Formula Student competition in the UK . “Design and analysis are especially important in auto racing, where both low weight and high performance are paramount, and designers tiptoe the razor's edge.”

Organized by the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE), the Formula SAE competition gives students a unique opportunity to conceive, design, fabricate, and compete in formula-style racing cars. Teams build cars over a period of about one year and take them to the annual competition for judging and comparison against approximately 120 other vehicles from colleges and universities throughout the world. The Formula Student organization holds its competition in Europe , and is overseen by IMechE in partnership with the SAE and Institution of Electrical Engineers (IEE).

Teams sponsored by SolidWorks Corporation will receive licenses of the SolidWorks Student Edition software, which includes COSMOS design analysis software. They will also receive T-shirts, stickers, and a SolidWorks machine shop banner.

SolidWorks Student Edition software includes:

COSMOSFloWorks fluid dynamics software, valuable for analysis of cars' intake systems and aerodynamics;

COSMOSWorks software for testing complicated parts and assemblies for stress and strain on the track;

COSMOSMotion virtual prototyping software, valuable for analyzing behavior of moving engine parts; and

the eDrawings email-enabled software tool, which makes it easy for users to share designs with teammates, educators, suppliers, and media.

“We've been a corporate sponsor of the Formula racing competitions for years, and work with hundreds of universities around the world who sponsor these teams,” said Marie Planchard, SolidWorks Corporation's director of education marketing. “However, students on Formula SAE teams need access to the software around the clock so they can work on their designs outside of the classroom. SolidWorks wants to support their passion and focus, so we have expanded our sponsorship to include the individual teams as well as the organizers. We know this sponsorship program will pay off, since SolidWorks-sponsored teams will continue to thrive and win in a variety of proficiency tests.”



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