March 12th, 2018: Nine days until Rollout. The nights are getting longer and the sleeping periods shorter. The sight of a managing team member still sleeping in the office when the others arrive at 9am, is becoming the usual because he or she was still working two hours ago.
10 months earlier: Everything begins with the start of the concept phase of muc018. After our successful debut in the Urban Concept class with muc017, the team is searching for a new challenge and shell is offering the perfect opportunity. For the very first time at the Shell Eco-marathon, the idea of “Autonomous Driving” will be realized and our team is going to compete against other selected top-teams. Several new challenges accompany the new competition. Next to five different autonomous disciplines in which muc018 has to compete, the biggest challenge is the development of an holistic vehicle concept. Our autonomous system is a vital part of the concept development and it was important for us really integrate all components fully into the our new muc018. This means every component is developed modular and can be removed easily from the vehicle. This modular concept enables us to excel at the autonomous disciplines without having a weight disadvantage at the traditional efficiency competition.
March 20th, 2018: The day of the Rollout. The last few weeks of sleepless nights and tired days paid off. The car has been constructed and is waiting to be in the spotlight of the MVG Museum. During the final preparations the excitement and tension in the team becomes more and more overwhelming. Every single member spent the last few months pouring every bit of energy, time and dedication into this project and can’t wait to present it to family, friends and of course our sponsors.
In the middle of the old trams of the MVG Museums as well as the futuristic prototypes of the previous Eco Teams and the direct predecessor muc17 the big moment finally arrives. Accompanied by applause and under the proud eyes of the team muc18 rolls up to the stage by itself where it is celebrated by guests and sponsors alike.
Despite all this euphoria we can afford only a short brake before we begin with our test-runs for the best results possible in the upcoming competitions.