Ten months to build a car from the ground up. More than 80 people working to build it. Eight different categories to be judged on. This is Formula 1 at the student level.
Every year, more than 600 student teams from universities spanning the world compete to design, build and race a formula-style, single-seater, electric racing car against other wildly talented students who are obtaining degrees from top engineering schools around the world. Winners are judged not simply on who has the fastest car – they are also judged on their business plan, design, financial planning, ability to withstand harsh elements, sustainability, and legality. This is real-world experience in the truest sense.
For the past few years, Dassault Systèmes has been sponsoring the EPFL Racing Team, which competes in various Formula Student competitions around Europe. Coming from one of the best engineering schools in the world, this three-year-old team has the added pressure of competing against other talented teams who have been competing for upwards of 15 years.
“The goal with our project is not only to build an electric car, but it’s also to push the boundaries of what has been done within other teams,” said Alexandre Reis De Matos EPFL Racing Team’s CEO for the 2021-2022 season.
This year, EPFL competed in Switzerland, Hungary, Germany and Spain respectively, where they were judged on both static events and dynamic events such as design, presentation, engineering, acceleration, skidpad, autocross, and endurance. In order to prepare, they spent months over the past year working with Dassault Systèmes’ solutions to design and engineer the best possible electric car. In past years they had utilized CATIA. However, as their team grew, they needed a centralized place for collaborative innovation and the ability to work on small details that they couldn’t in past years. Each student had their own, extremely busy schedule, making it almost impossible to meet and work on the car at the same time. Therefore, when looking for a cloud solution, they knew they needed one that would help facilitate this specific challenge.
They switched to the 3DEXPERIENCE platform, which allowed them to design each part of the car more intuitively, easily share files across the team, and seamlessly switch between simulation and design. Making the switch to the cloud platform was critical when designing this year’s car, Artemis. Up until the last minute, the EPFL team was developing and fine-tuning Artemis’ parts on the 3DEXPERIENCE platform to make sure everything was perfect for the competition.
“There is always a probability that something goes wrong. Either the car doesn’t work or the pilot makes a mistake. It can happen very quickly and we do our best to avoid it but…you never know.” – Gabriel Veigas Marques: Powertrain Team Leader / Driver (2021/2022)
Ready to see the EPFL racing team in action?
[WATCH The Road to Formula Student]
Dassault Systèmes is exceptionally proud of everyone on the EPFL Racing Team who participated in Formula Student this year. The work and dedication they put into each part of Artemis was truly amazing and gives us great confidence in the future of the workforce. Sponsoring and working with the EPFL team is always a pleasure and we can’t wait to see what the 2023 team brings!
This year’s results:
The EPFL racing team placed in each of the following events for Switzerland, Hungary, and Spain Formula Student in 2022:
Switzerland Formula Student
- 1st place: Engineering Design
- 2nd place: Skidpad
- 1st place: Autocross
Hungary Formula Student
- 3rd place: Business Plan
Spain Formula Student
- 1st place: Business Plan