2015-05-24: TUfast Eco Team is winner of the Shell Eco-marathon 2015

At its 30th anniversary the last day of the Shell Eco-marathon has gone into the history of the TUfast Eco Team.

With an efficency of 863,1km/kWh we have won the “Battery Electic Prototye” class.

The day started early in the morning. At 5 am in the morning eLi15 has been placed into the queue and waited for its first run on Sunday. And it was worth it. We could improve our result from Saturday morning and have reached an efficency of 766km/kWh. But that wasn’t enough to become first. We have known that our direct competitor also had one more run. So we start queuing again right after the first run.

The sun was at its best as we went on the track for the second run at 11:45.

The other team went on the track just a few minutes before we did. So both of the leading teams were on track at the same time. We had some problems with the traffic but due to our radio communication we had no critical situations. After 10 laps we finished our run and we have known that our competitor improved just a little bit. Our chance. And there it was: the first inoffical result of 903km/kWh. Amazing!

But due to reglementations not all of our solar energy is counting into our result. But still we had the final and official result of 863,1km/kWh!

For the first time in the history of the TUfast Eco Team we have won the Shell Eco-marathon!

We want to say Thank You to all sponsors, supporters as well as our friends and family for the support we have got over the last 5 1/2 years, now!


We are very excited about the fact that the Shell Eco-marathon is held in London, next year!

We are looking forward to this!

In addition we want to say that in all years we had participated we were always were warmly welcomed by Shell and the whole “the Ahoy” team.

So let’s say Ahoy to Rotterdam and we are looking forward to see you all next year!


P.S. Please wait for an extended text report about the whole week of the Shell Eco-marathon 2015

2015-05-22: People and Off-Track events at the Shell Eco-marathon

On day No.5 at the Shell Eco-marathon we took some time to look around on “the Ahoy” and tried to get an impression of the whole Event and realized that the Shell Eco-marathon is more than just a competition for university student teams.
The Shell Eco-marathon offers young primary students the possibility to discover different things starting from energy production to recycle processes and give a brief insight into the automotive industry, with its Off-Track events. All events cover a broad range of scientific topics and are aimed to increase the interest in technical issues and having fun in exploring something.

Starting with small experiments like building a hot-wire curcuit with clay, building a personal rubber band driven boat, play with optical illusions and laser pointer over to produce high voltage to create lightnings. Every single experiment show the students that science is not only just hard work, but having fun while exploring.

exp1 exp2



Another side event is the “Skills Juniors” Challenge. Over 400 primary school students from Rotterdam are invited to participate the challenge. Participating there means to handle with 5 different issues at 5 different stations. For each issue the students have 7 minutes time.
After finishing one issue the participants rotate to the next issue. Reaching from modeling a part with CAD Software and print it out
with a 3D printer in the next moment, to think about the technic used in our future homes. Further questions handle with harbor logistics,
urban farming or medical sciences. The best ones of each run are qualified for the semi-finals or even the final on Saturday. The judges evaluate the competences as well as the talent for a special issue and the joy the students have during the competition. Aim of the “Skills Junior” Challenge is to explore different job opportunities and to grow essential competences. The Challenge is held for the third time now and is planned to expand to other cities in the Netherlands and maybe once there is a national challenge. Other “Skills Junior” challenges are held in Germany and many more countries, too. The project is supported by the city government of Rotterdam and the Ministry of Education and Science.

For more information please visit: skills-netherlands.nl


At the Mini Shell Eco-marathon the students are given the chance to build their first electric vehicle. The challenge is to build a small vehicle from a construction kit and compete against other vehicles on a small track. The vehicle receives its energy from a metal plate. The electrons are released when a drop of saltwater is placed on the plate.

There, we met the boys and girls from the “CBS op dreef” from Bruinisse in the south of the Netherlands. The primary school students aged from 10 to 12 did a two hours journey to the Shell Eco-marathon and are overwhelmed by the organization of this big event. It was not the first time for the students to build something technical. Because in their lessons at CBS op dreef the students do a lot of handwork e.g. they have the great possibility to work with small electric devices, electric motors and even solar cells. Very impressive. Monthly, the students get a special course and they are allowed to experiment with elements. In this course experiments with electricity or heat are done by the students guided by their teachers. One of the teachers is Rianda Dorst. But not only building something is important for the teachers also economical education plays a big role. “We try to teach them to live a life with less energy consumption and less waste of recources”, she said. Even Shell is partly involved in the education of those students. Shell visits the school regularly and tell the students how electricity is produced and how the students can improve their economical footprint. A great cooperation. We wish you all the best for the future and keep on with your educational method!

For more information please visit the schools’ Homepage: www.cbsopdreef.nl




IACE1n one hall automotive engineering was the topic and beside the Formula 1 cars of the “Scuderia Ferrari” the students from the Automotive Center of Expertise (ACE) cooperation teach primary school students how an internal combustion engine or an anti-lock brake system actually works. They also introduce their model of autonomous driving at their booth. The ACE is a cooperation between three Dutch colleges and was founded to improve the learning process of the students. Students of the ACE program definitly know that they want to stay in the automotive industry. Like Masoem from the “Fontys Hogeschool Automotive”. He is just one year away from his graduation and he is already doing a long- term internship at Inalfa roof systems, which is a supplier for nearly all big car manufacturers. He is so much involved there that he has got his own project, recently.

Here the link to the ACE: www.acemobility.nl


We also visited the booth of the Shell-Eco marathon supporters HP and Linde. At the booth of HP the primary-school students disassembled computer parts and considered how difficult the recycling of electric devices is. Meanwhile, Linde showed that CO2 is not just a greenhouse gas but further it is used in industrial applications like dry ice. To make it more interesting they present all that information in a funny show in the “Energy Theater”.

HP Linde

All these impressions show, once again, that the Shell Eco-marathon is not just a competition. Furthermore it is a big exchange platform for state-of-the-art technology and great ideas.

We wish all guest of the Shell Eco-marathon a great, informative time and all participants of the competition good luck for the last two competition days!

2015-05-18: the EducEco Challenge in Colomiers, France

This year the EducEco is dated one week before the Shell Eco-marathon. This gives us the chance to drive eLi15 under competition conditions, for the first time. Due to regular test drives, the car as well as our new drivers Julia Hesse and Annkatrin Swanson were well prepared and surprised with reliability and routine.

Continue reading

2015-05-12: part 3 of our part presentation: the cover


Based on our decision to make use of GaAs-cells this year, we have adapted our design to the circumstances.

Thanks to the increased efficiency of the solar cells, they we take up even less space this season. In order to avoid unnecessary aerodynamic friction, the solar cells are fully integrated into the car’s shape.

The solar cells are placed in a strip at the very top of the car. This way, the efficiency concerning one-way solar radiation was improved considerably.

A flange is connected to the cover and is supported by its counterpart located at the top of the monocoque. This way, a better placement and a better positioning of the part are ensured. Additionally, the cover is fitted to the monocoque in the back, allowing for it to be fixed against relative motion.

The cover’s edge draws a far lower line towards the rear end of the car than the last years’ cars’ did. This way the powertrain and the rear wheel are easily accessible. This immensely boosts efficiency concerning work in these areas.

Due to differences concerning the regulations, this particular cover will only be used for the Shell Eco-marathon, instead of debuting during the Educ Eco competition.


2015-05-02: part 2 of our part presentation: the safety and control board

4 days before our first competition this season, we unveil another secrete of eLi15.

Safety and control board


The safety and control board supplies all electrical components with power. Voltage regulators set the voltage a.o. to 12 Volts for the horn, 5 Volts for the display, and to 3.3 Volts for the microcontroller. Within, the emergency shutdown circuitry cuts the power, after the emergency-off button is activated.

The board also contains a microcontroller featuring a CAN-connection, hereby allowing for various measurements and switching operations. In order to monitor power consumption, ammeters are placed in the input and output area. In addition to that, the 48 and the 12-Volt rail’s voltages are measured.

If every measuring-point delivers a correct signal and the displaycontroller puts out the starting signal via CAN-interface, a relay that supplies the motor controller with power, is activated.

2015-04-20- start of series: part presentations

Together with the presentation of our vehicle, its appearance was shown off, and the inner workings became transparent. We’d now like to reveal selected components and technical details.


Swing arm eLi15

The swing arm is the rear axle’s and motor’s load-carrying component and inherently so a crucial component of the rear axle assembly. It is connected to the body in three points, one being a connection to the rear partition via bent sheet metal, the two other points being screws connected to monocoque side aluminum inserts.Hinterrad-Aufhaengung

Rear wheel bearing

The axle is inserted into the half domes at the bottom and then locked in place through the upper ones. The axial fixation is realized through fitted discs on the insides of the arms.

The positioning of the component within the vehicle is made possible through rotation around a fitted bolt. Guided by the slotted holes, the axle can be adapted to the vehicles’ center line.

To guarantee a possible adaptation of the motor-positioning, a guiding flute is integrated. The motor’s axle and the rear wheel’s axle being parallel, is essential for a high level of efficiency. The fine tuning of the chain’s tension – also important to maintain a high level of efficiency – is realized within the motor’s bearing.

Further additional elements are the rear brake system and a bracket for the RPM-sensor. Extra space and appropriate angles for screwing were considered.


The most important aspect regarding the construction and building of the swing arm was a lightweight structure, which lead to an aluminum execution. On top of that, the wall thickness has been reduced to a minimum. Only areas in which e.g. screws are placed, deviate. The C-Profile used for the swing arms had proven to be a suitable one for our need for a high stiffness whilst maintaining a low weight. The component’s strength was confirmed through simulation and the following tests with the actual component.


Besides the complex mounting relative to the machine, the thin walls causing an oscillation was a challenge during manufacturing.

2015-04-19: Information event

We would like to invite all students that are interested in our project to this semesters information event. We will talk about our project, the organisation and current positions in the team.

Meet us at:
Wednesday, April 22nd at 18:30
in MW 1050 on the Campus Garching, Maschinenwesen (Mechanical Engineering Building).

Or send us an e-mail if you are interested: info.eco@tufast.de

We are looking forward to meet you!