Engineering and motorsport meet

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23 Sep 2015

At CPIT, motorsport is being used as a vehicle to deliver engineering study outcomes for final year engineering students.

Engineering study and motorsport will come together at Ruapuna in October, when CPIT students apply their practical skills to analysing race-car performance data.

Six third-year students in CPIT's Bachelor of Engineering Technology program will be looking at data from two race cars, which will be taking part in an event at Mike Pero Motorsport Park on the Ruapuna circuit, October 2.

These students are undertaking CPIT's new Engineering Systems Analysis course, which was introduced this year. Their course work is enabling them to develop and apply engineering design, problem solving and analytical skills to a range of engineering systems, including race cars, mechanical engineering lecturer Graeme Harris said.

"The idea of this exercise is for students to learn how to solve problems using engineering solutions when presented with information, which in this situation is provided by data-loggers attached to both cars," he said. 

Tuning in:  CPIT engineering students listen to visiting speaker and motorsport training expert Glenn Hayward from Carz n Bikez Training Ltd. From left, Robbie McGregor, Jarred McKeown, Frank Slee and Lawrence McBreen.

Vehicle data logging and analysis helps measure and analyse factors in the car's performance such as velocity, acceleration and g-forces. Improvements can be made from this information. Harris said the motorsport environment was a vibrant place for studying engineering.

Other content in this course includes computer CAD chassis design, engine design and simulation, vehicle analysis, aerodynamics, dyno testing and mathematical analysis. The engineering department was pleased with the level of interest shown in this new degree course elective, he said.

"It's been an inspiration to other students and to the rest of the third-year class."