Formula 1 for students

You are a true fan of Formula 1 and you enjoy watching races on TV? You know how to assemble and demount the engine and your hands are always dirty from oil? The RUDN University students also enjoy dealing with cars. In Europe. Onaracetrack.

The RUDN University became the platform for assembling cars when Engineering Academy students came up with the idea of participation in the international engineering competition “Formula Student”, which is a student version of the famous World Championship. Races are held on the real Formula 1 circuits where professional drivers race.

The idea of such competition is that at any university gathers a group of students-enthusiasts regardless of their field of study. They make a project of a racing car, assemble it and then go off to the races. The authorities of the RUDN University approved of this idea and helped to put it into action – provided students with a site for vehicle assembly, necessary equipment, materials and also information and financial support. In 2011 in the RUDN University its own racing team FS-RUDN University emerged.

The project makes possible to turn ideas into reality for those students who are keen on cars and have a desire to develop their skills in the sphere of automobile construction. There are some regulations in terms of the race car design, but there is still room for creativity. The University’s team have some patented details which they made up and produced themselves. The appearance of cars is also devised by the teammates. Moreover, they do not simply assemble a car but also draw up full technical documentation for its serial manufacture!

In order to win in the student races all teams are supposed to go through a test on static and dynamic aspects. All this is observed by judges who are representatives of international automobile plants and companies. Judges decide upon the automobile design, car’s aerodynamics, team’s engineering solutions, the cost of the produced car and its safety record. The proper races in the Time Attack format (who sets the best time is the winner) and endurance race (which car drives more laps and doesn’t go wrong) are also held. The project is backed by such giants as BOSCH, VW, AUDI, BMW, Mahle, Brunel, DEKRA, Continental, Eaton, GKN, SolidWorks and others.

The RUDN University’s team member from Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Horn Lamach notices: “This is the real Formula 1! Just like in that contest here it’s more about engineering than racing. The event is controlled be the series of regulations – we have to take into account all the requirements for the assembly of a car. Its each component – the size of the engine, electronics and even weight of a vehicle – is regulated. Also we have to find additional resources or construct them if necessary. And we have to manage all these aspects in very limited time – it’s the most challenging and stimulating thing in all that.”

Competition is held almost in every part of the world – in Europe, the USA, South Africa, Japan and Brazil. In Europe it takes place since 1978. In 2014 the RUDN University’s team managed to participate in 4 races – in Russia, the Check Republic, Hungary and Spain. In order to arrive in time for each race the team crossed the borders of 12 European states – the teammates managed to travel through half Europe in a loaded van with a racing car, tents, equipment and food.

Auto racing is a challenging sport. During races you almost have no free time – you have to service a car which sometimes breaks, also cook and simply tide yourself up. It’s a luxury to sleep 4-5 hours per night. Though, it can’t happen without fun.That’swhatthe FS RUDN teammaterecollects:

“It all was like a one huge feast. We drove across Europe, we ate Italian pasta, French burgers, German sausages… Between races I spent 10 days at the seaside. Visited Sagrada Familia at last. I came back home with loads of photos – friends couldn’t believe I returned from student races. At the competition itself we lived right in the thick of events – in tents near the track. Hanged out with guys from other foreign teams. Most of the participants come from Europe, they don’t have to drive long – so to put it slightly they didn’t come empty-handed, they brought meat, barbecue, beer… And acoustic system with the music all around the tent camp.”

The FS RUDN University team has won a lot of prizes already. They were honoured with cups in Italy, Hungary, the Check Republic, awarded with certificates for the best technical project at the II Formula SAE International Forum of Engineering Projects and for valuable contribution at the International conference “Formula Student in Russia”. Such a competition is a perfect start for those desiring to make a career in the auto business – the former members of the team now can be met in top Formula 1 teams.

For the student from Lebanon Shaabo Issa this project is very special: “I was dreaming of assembling cars since childhood – and not just simple cars, but the racing ones, which can not only drive but also participate in something huge and win cups. It was my dream and I am beyond happy to meet such a team. The most engaging part of it is that we find out how to produce a brand new car and how to eliminate troubles which are sometimes even unknown for an experienced engineer.”

If you too want to drive a real racing car and travel around the world with such motorsport fans like you, you only have to take one step ahead and come make it real in the RUDN University! 

Tags: Engineering Academy
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