Chemical engineering students win electric mobility challenge

Monday, June 5, 2017

A team of Waterloo chemical engineering students captured first place in the seventh annual Electric Mobility Canada (EMC) Student competition held during the Electric Mobility National Conference in Toronto.

This year, students were challenged with the task of creating a short-term plan to make their campus accessible for electric vehicles (EVs). The plan needed to include all aspects of transportation electrification, such as charging infrastructure, electrification of campus fleet, grid load management, and EV outreach to students, professors, and staff.

Supervised by Michael Fowler, a Waterloo chemical engineering professor, the team of Anqi Luo, Audrey Avianto, Celine Chung, Christina Lee, Jane Su, Jihye Oh, Madhav Vasudev, and Nathan Lee presented a plan that involved converting compact vehicles and sedans in the campus fleet to plug-in hybrid electric vehicles.

It also included installing electric charging stations at the University’s General Service Complex building. These stations would be reserved for charging campus vehicles at night and open to staff and student EV owners during the day.

Electric mobility challenge winners

In the front row from left: Jane Su, Christina Lee, Audrey Avianto and Anqi Luo. In the back row from left: Nathan Lee, Madhav Vasudev and Jihye Oh. Not in the photo: Celine Chung.

Other creative ideas the team presented were a partnership with Sustainable Campus Initiative (SCI), a student group focused on promoting sustainability on campus, and installing telematics devices in plug-in campus vehicles to analyze the impact of EV charging on the university’s grid load.

As the winning team, the University of Waterloo received a FLO charging station to install on campus.