Eco-Runner Team Delft is a multidisciplinairy student team from the Delft University of Technology. The team, consisting of 23 students, dedicates itself for a full year to design, build, test and race the world’s most efficient, hydrogen powered city car. Our ultimate goal is to inspire and activate the public to play a bigger part in the energy transition and we promote hydrogen along the way. We create our cars to prove our message.
At Eco-Runner Team Delft we aim to build the world’s most efficient hydrogen powered city car. Efficiency is therefore the main goal for the engineers within the team. The engineers, especially the Vehicle Dynamics department, strive to design all the components as lightweight as possible and came to a hybrid solution in terms of material usage, namely carbon fiber profiles to cover the large bodies and aluminum connections in between for a high tolerance fit.
The car is a physical representation of how efficient mobility can be and how safe, cheap and efficient it is to use hydrogen as fuel. The proof? Driving approximately 1200 km on just €3,50 worth of fuel, without emitting any greenhouse gasses! At the end of the year Eco-Runner races their car against hundreds of other teams in a global competition. The winner can crown themselves the world’s most efficient, hydrogen powered city car!
Simplicity in this design is accounted for by using standard profiles such as thin walled square and circular sections. These sections have been supplied by CarbonWebshop/Refitech after a very friendly conversation about our team and mission and the view of CarbonWebshop on high-tech solutions for engineering problems. The Vehicle Dynamics department was actively searching for a good supplier of these standard profiles and found various suppliers and reached out to a number of them. Refitech/Carbonwebshop was the first to answer our calls and immediately showed great interest and could provide the needed products, tips/feedback and technical knowhow which we are very grateful for.
Carbonwebshop supplied the 40x40mm High Precision carbon fiber square tubes (CKO 4040 1600 HP) which have been used in the front suspension, especially the upright. This is the part that encloses the front axle, allows for steering, transfers most of the braking force and is definitely the most heavily loaded part in the front suspension. By safely CNC milling various holes and slots into the profile we could attach 7075 aluminum connections which allowed for a press-fit for the front axle and two attachment points to allow for suspension travel to reduce forces while driving.
The next largely used profile is the 25x25mm High Precision square carbon fiber tube (CKO 2525 1600 HP). The rear suspension uses a trailing arm setup and our two double sided trailing arms are embodied by these lightweight profiles. Again safely CNC milling made it possible to introduce various mounting options and together with aluminum inserts we transformed a simple square profile into a super lightweight and stiff trailing arm.
Furthermore, the front suspension is designed with a double wishbone configuration and these are largely made out of the smallest hollow circular carbon fiber tubes that CarbonWebshop/Refitech could supply, namely the 10x8mm (CBU 1008 2010 TG) variant. Again the combination of aluminum inserts and carbon fiber profiles proved to be effective because we were able to produce 4 wishbones (all that the car required) at the weight of 1 wishbone from the previous version of our Eco-Runner. Not only do those numbers look promising, but the end result is also something very sleek and beautiful to look at.
Our steering system is probably the best example of our partnership with CarbonWebshop/Refitech since it is completely made out of their carbon fiber products, except for some bolts and aluminum inserts. The actual steering wheel is made out of a 3mm thick sheet of carbon fiber which has been safely CNC milled into a Formula 1 inspired steering wheel. With some clever placed holes, this steerin wheel also proved to be a perfect mounting position for all of the controls needed to drive the car. By building almost every part out of carbon fiber and some very small and lightweight aluminum connections, we’re able to create the entire steering system while maintaining a very low weight of less than 300 grams with every steering part included!
But not only the Vehicle Dynamics department did great work with the products of CarbonWebshop/Refitech. The body department needed various stiffeners to locally stiffen up their super lightweight bodywork, which we’re safely CNC milled out of a very strong 5mm carbon fiber sheet. And don’t forget our newly designed electric in-wheel motor which was enclosed by two large circular 0.5mm CNC milled carbon fiber sheets to make sure the motor stays clean and is as little effected by air resistance as possible
Shell Eco-marathon Netherlands brought together 37 teams from all across Europe and Africa in an epic Urban Concept Competition. From May 31 – June 3 2022, teams from the Europe and Africa region came to the TT Circuit Assen, in the Netherlands, to battle for the title of most energy efficient Urban Concept in all three energy categories – ICE, Battery Electric and Hydrogen. During the event, these brilliant students showcased teamwork to push the boundaries of innovation and energy-efficiency.
1st place: Eco-Runner Team Delft from Delft University of Technology, Netherlands
Best result: 486.3 km/m3