|Mater Dei High School team poses with their #22 car, right, which is the grand prize winner, registering 2,843.4 miles per gallon at the 2008 Shell Eco-marathon Americas. The team’s #21 car, left, placed third in the event. Click to enlarge.|
Mater Dei High School of Evansville, Ind., set a new mileage record at the 2008 Shell Eco-marathon Americas—a challenge to design, build and test fuel-efficient prototype vehicles that travel the farthest distance using the least amount of fuel.
The Mater Dei Supermileage Team’s combustion-engine prototype vehicle achieved 2,843.4 miles per gallon, equivalent to 1,208.6 kilometers per liter. Despite wind gusts of up to 50 miles per hour and various teams’s mechanical issues, three teams this year broke the 2007 mileage record set by Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo.
The 2008 Shell Eco-marathon Americas welcomed 32 teams from four high schools and 23 universities from Canada, Mexico and the US. The entries included 25 vehicles powered by combustion engines, four by fuel cell/hydrogen technology, one by diesel fuel, one by LPG (liquid petroleum gas) and two by solar power.
Category winners for the 2008 Shell Eco-marathon Americas include:
Grand Prize. With mileage of 2,843.4 mpg (1,208.6 kilometers per liter) the Supermileage Team from Mater Dei High School in Evansville, Ind. won a $10,000 grand prize with their vehicle, 6th Gen.
Combustion Engine. The 6th Gen vehicle from Mater Dei also took first place in this category with its 2,843.4 mpg (1,208.6 kilometers per liter) run.
Diesel. Eureka, Calif.,-based Diesel Corsair team placed first. The College of the Redwoods team achieved 304.5 mpg (129.4 kilometers per liter).
LPG. The Spartans from Schurr High School in Montebello, Calif., achieved 163.5 mpg (69.5 kilometers per liter) in their Mach 1 prototype vehicle.
Fuel Cell/Hydrogen. Penn State’s HFV Team from University Park, Pa., achieved 1,668.3 mpg (709.1 kilometers per liter) in its Blood, Sweat and Gears vehicle.
Solar. The Purdue Solar Racing team from West Lafayette, Ind., took first place with its solar vehicle Pulsar, which achieved 2,861.8 mpg (1,216.4 kilometers per liter).