Coventry City Council’s prototype Very Light Rail vehicle, which has the potential to transform how people move about the city, is set to be moved ready for real on track testing.
Over the last two years researchers from WMG, University of Warwick together with TDi Ltd, have been designing and building the new Coventry Very Light Rail vehicle for Coventry City Council, which will see an electric powered, zero-emissions, lightweight, rail-based public transport system arrive in Coventry.
The vehicle is being moved from NP Aerospace in the city for some static software testing before moving to a dedicated track at BCIMO in Dudley.
The prototype vehicle has done a tour of Coventry so it could see its future operational home. After leaving the vehicle production site in Coventry it stopped outside the Co-op building and the Transport Museum so that the public could get a better view.
Councillor Jim O’Boyle cabinet member for jobs and regeneration and Coventry and Warwickshire LEP board director said, “I am really pleased to see the first prototype vehicle out of the factory and on to our city’s streets. Even on a low loader it looks impressive – modern, sleek and of course the fact its battery powered means it’s good for the environment and air quality too.
“Very Light Rail has reached this really important point thanks to all of the researchers, innovators, engineers and manufacturing skills we have right here in the city. And I believe that we can create jobs and opportunities for local people as we lead the Green Industrial Revolution.
“On track testing will take some time – but it should prove the concept – and at that stage I expect there to be lots of interest in VLR from other areas of the UK and abroad. This is a very exciting moment.”
Dr Darren Hughes, from WMG, University of Warwick comments:
“It is very exciting for us to see the development of the Coventry Light Rail vehicle move onto the next phase of testing in Dudley, and to see the vehicle in the City which it will one day call home.
“The vehicle has been constructed within Coventry with a reliance on a regional supply chain where possible, showing the strength in depth of local manufacturing. It is a unique vehicle with state-of-the-art technologies including an advanced battery power-train and resilient glazing making it even safer for public use.”
Helen Martin, director of regeneration & enterprise at Dudley Council said: “The Very Light Rail Test Track and National Innovation Centre (NIC) is a key project for our borough. It will offer an innovative and exciting opportunity to provide lower cost local rail connectivity, encouraging shift from private vehicles towards public transport and creating economic benefits in terms of skills and supply chain opportunities.
“With the test track now completed, we’re looking forward to testing getting underway later this year.”
Darren Smith Head of TDI adds: “The TDI team are extremely pleased with the projects’ progress to date and the local benefits it has enabled. The work our supply chain, including our colleagues at NP Aerospace have engaged in, has produced an outstanding first off demonstrator for this hugely important and innovative project. The future economic benefits, both nationally and locally, this project will bring cannot be underestimated and TDI are very proud to be entrusted to deliver it for our client, WMG.”
James Kempston, CEO, NP Aerospace, comments: “Collaboration on the VLR project with WMG and TDI has been a great success, resulting in an exceptional prototype, which is ready to begin testing. The project has expanded our capability in the prototype vehicle industry and has enabled us to support a significant environmental transport initiative for the people of Coventry. It’s a very positive story for UK manufacturing with the challenges of the pandemic and Brexit and it’s particularly impressive what the team have delivered in just 8 months. We look forward to any future collaborations this may bring to the business.”
The BCIMO centre in Dudley is home to the test track developed as part of the wider research programme, on which they will now test the vehicle on to ensure that it performs as planned. Important trials will include the rapid battery charging system which will allow vehicle power to be replenished in minutes.
The project has been made possible thanks to funding from the Government’s Local Growth Fund through the Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership (CWLEP) and the West Midlands Combined Authority Devolution Deal.
University of Warwick’s WMG and Engineering wins £5 million and key coordinating role in Government’s Driving the Electric Revolution programme
WMG and the School of Engineering at the University of Warwick have been awarded just over £5 million funding and a key coordinating role in the Government’s Driving the Electric Revolution Industrialisation Centre programme.
Driving the Electric Revolution is a UKRI (UK Research and Innovation) funded Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF) technology programme to help achieve the UK’s net zero ambitions working across cars, aircraft, rail, marine, renewables, industrial digital technology, industrial power electronics, and machines & drives. It is investing £28.5 million into cutting edge equipment across the country.
WMG and the School of Engineering at the University of Warwick have been awarded the following equipment funding:
• Almost £4 million from UKRI and the High Value Manufacturing Catapult for a new Winding Centre of Excellence led by Dr David Simkin in WMG at the University of Warwick. The facility will help UK supply chain companies to manufacture discrete hairpin machines.
• An award in order of £1.3 million from UKRI and High Value Manufacturing Catapult for the University of Warwick’s School of Engineering for a facility led by Professor Phil Mawby and focusing on power electronics reliability and failure analysis.
WMG at the University of Warwick has also been selected to provide leadership to the Midland’s region Driving the Electric Revolution Centre, which is one of four across the UK. These centres will coordinate and build on the UK’s national capability to deliver long-term sustainable growth on the road to net zero. Together they will help businesses scale up the use of electric-powered vehicles and machines across a range of industries and transport systems to grow the UK supply chain.
Margot James, Executive Chair at WMG, University of Warwick said: “We are delighted that Warwick is leading such an important project in the UK’s effort to build a net zero future. The green agenda will contribute significantly to our economic recovery and growth, with zero carbon transport crucial to protecting our planet. It’s encouraging to see an opportunity for UK businesses to work together, through the Centres, to deliver on the sustainable transport challenge.
Professor Will Drury, Driving the Electric Revolution Challenge Director said: “This investment represents a vital step forward in making the UK a world leader in Power Electronics, Machines and Drives (PEMD). With access to the Centres and network open to all, we aim to give all UK businesses and researchers the ability to develop and scale new PEMD technologies and manufacturing processes. Only by investing now in developing PEMD will the UK achieve its net zero ambitions.”
Dr. Andreas Docter, Director Electric Powertrain, Jaguar Land Rover said: “This is a great opportunity to support the most advanced projects in the development and testing of Power Electronics, Machines & Drive (PEMD) systems. Jaguar Land Rover has a specific interest in projects which improve manufacturing processes, accelerate the PEMD manufacturing innovation to production and an important one is flexible eDrive prototyping. These all contribute to the company’s mission of achieving Destination Zero.”
David Bock MIET, @FutureBEV Technical Lead BMW AG said: “@FutureBEV is pleased to be working with University of Warwick as a strong partner in the development of next generation powertrain development and core component development within the APC15 @FutureBEV programme. University of Warwick’s place in the Government’s Driving the Electric Revolution programme will provide value in the @FutureBEV reinforcing the knowledge transfer to real products that will influence the concept to product delivery within the program and in steering the next generations of engineers into the industry. The UK supply chain needs this capability, and this provides a strong path to delivering best in class power electronics to market as well as the needed skill base for future delivery into the value chain.
23 MARCH 2021
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Notes for Editors:
Any business or researcher interested in using a Driving the Electric Revolution Industrialisation Centre should visit www.der-ic.org.uk.
The funding comes from Driving the Electric Revolution. Part of the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF) delivered by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI). Driving the Electric Revolution started in August 2019 as part of the ISCF programme. The programme is funded by £80 million from the government’s ISCF Future of Mobility grand challenge and aims to secure £154m private investment. It aims to make the UK a global leader in the manufacture of core technologies which support electrification: Power Electronics, Machines and Drives (PEMD). It seeks to accelerate the journey into the growth of PEMD supply chain in the UK.
ISCF aims to bring together the UK’s world leading research with business to meet the major industrial and societal challenges of our time. The fund was created to provide funding and support to UK businesses and researchers, part of the government’s £4.7 billion increase in research and development over the next 4 years. It was designed to ensure that research and innovation takes centre stage in the Government’s modern Industrial Strategy. It is run by UK Research and Innovation.
UKRI is the largest public funder of research and innovation in the UK, with a budget of over £8bn. It is composed of seven disciplinary research councils, Innovate UK and Research England.
We operate across the whole country and work with our many partners in higher education, research organisations businesses, government, and charities.
Our vision is for an outstanding research and innovation system in the UK that gives everyone the opportunity to contribute and to benefit, enriching lives locally, nationally and internationally.
Our mission is to convene, catalyse and invest in close collaboration with others to build a thriving, inclusive research and innovation system that connects discovery to prosperity and public good.
UKRI continues to support the research and innovation community to navigate the transitions associated with the exit of the UK from the EU. To keep up to date please visit our dedicated pages. https://www.ukri.org/research/international/ukri-eu-exit/
Researchers at WMG are part of a unique four-way partnership with Triumph Motorcycles, Williams Advanced Engineering and Integral Powertrain Ltd e-Drive Division, focusing on developing specialist electric motorcycle technology and innovative integrated solutions.
Phase 2 of Project TE-1, a landmark four phase collaboration in British design and engineering, is now complete with the exciting reveal of the innovative advanced electric powertrain and battery, and the very first styling sketches for the final prototype.
Including innovation in battery and powertrain design, initial test performance results that far exceed the current benchmarks and industry targets and development in efficiency and range technology, Project TE-1 is well on track to fully deliver on the partnership’s objectives to enhance the credibility and profile of British industry and design, and provide substantial input into future electric motorcycle strategy from Triumph.
Nick Bloor, Triumph CEO said: “The completion of Phase 2, and the promising results achieved to date, provide an exciting glimpse of the potential electric future and showcase the talent and innovation of this unique British collaboration. Without doubt the outcome of this project will play a significant part in our future efforts to meet our customer’s ambition and desire to reduce their environmental impact and for more sustainable transportation.
“This important project will provide one of the foundations for our future electric motorcycle strategy, which is ultimately focussed on delivering what riders want from their Triumph; the perfect balance of performance, handling and real world usability, with genuine Triumph character.”
Truong Quang Dinh, WMG’s Assistant Professor of Energy Management and Control Systems explained: “Our creation of initial computer-based simulation models at the start of Phase 1 has been instrumental in ensuring that the component selection was appropriate to achieve the performance targets defined by the partners for the TE-1 Prototype. We have continued with this work across Phase 2 of the project, refining the models to a much more complex level to allow us and the partners to imitate further components on the bike such as braking, throttle, lighting and other systems and mimic real-world riding to provide development opportunities before components were fully designed. Additionally we have created a physical rig wired with all of the control units, in order to implement a design validation test programme to ensure the function of each section was within the allowable range.”
Truong Quang Dinh explains more here: Project TE-1 - WMG cut on Vimeo
Project TE-1, a two year project, is supported and co-funded by the UK Government’s Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) and the Office for Zero Emission Vehicles (OZEV), via Innovate UK.
Read more about the Project here: Project Triumph TE-1 | For the Ride (triumphmotorcycles.co.uk)
Read more about WMG’s energy research here: Energy (warwick.ac.uk)
WMG commends the advances to UK innovation, skills and industrial growth made by the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund and supports NAO recommendations to further improve impact
- Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund has brought government, business and researchers together at scale and at pace, supporting over 1,600 innovation projects, including Coventry’s UK Battery Industrialisation Centre
- NAO right to support streamlining start-up and approvals processes of up to 72 weeks, which can deter bids, especially among smaller businesses
- Longer term visibility of funding will be needed to give investment confidence to businesses and academia
- Mechanisms to engage private sector finance should be considered – especially as innovations become ready for market
- As industry faces challenges of the pandemic, flexibility in financing bids, especially to support smaller businesses, should be considered
- Regional and Skills strategies should be a key part of innovation funding approach
- The Catapult network provides an established and successful platform for innovation, and its geographic locations also suggest it could play a big role in regional levelling-up
- Skills must be developed alongside innovation to give the UK the ability to exploit our ISFC investments. WMG, at the University of Warwick, have been pioneers in developing skills programmes alongside innovation and industrialisation
WMG at the University of Warwick has welcomed today’s National Audit Office report on the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund, supporting their positive assessment of the fund, and backed their calls for a more streamlined approach to innovation funding, alongside a greater emphasis on the importance of innovation for regional development and skills growth.
Professor Dave Greenwood, Director of Industrial Engagement at WMG, University of Warwick and Chief Executive of the WMG High Value Manufacturing Catapult said:
“The Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF) has been a powerful tool to support innovation that meets the most pressing national challenges.
“The ISCF has bought government, business and researchers together at scale, and at pace, to help our transport industry decarbonise through the Faraday Battery Challenge, and is delivering vital vaccine capacity through the Vaccine Manufacturing and Innovation Centre. It has supported over 1,600 projects, including the new UK Battery Industrialisation Centre in Coventry, with over forty per cent of support in the first two waves going to small and Micro companies.
“These projects are making a difference to UK innovation, skills and industrial growth, and these successes should be celebrated.
“As the report says, however, there are always opportunities to improve how the Fund operates.
“First, we need to make the funding process faster and more agile – especially given rapid changes in the external Business and social environment, from Brexit to the Pandemic. Lengthy Approvals processes of up to 72 weeks for selecting challenges and awarding projects can deter bids, especially among smaller businesses.
“Alongside this, with much of industry dealing with financial pressures from the pandemic, government should consider relaxing some of the funding constraints on the programmes – especially where they fall significantly short of what state aid would allow, such as in the co-investment requirement from Industry, which was increased in Wave 3 of the Fund.
“Together, these steps would help position the UK for clean growth post-COVID and deliver on opportunities created for the UK supply chain by the UK/EU trade agreement.
“Looking forward, it’s essential that there is a long-term funding package in place to support the Industrial Strategy Challenges. As the report notes “The Fund was part of a one-year settlement in the spending review in November 2020.” Short term spending decisions will ultimately be detrimental to large scale industrial and academic investments – a 5 year rolling funding horizon is needed for full confidence from Industry partners. To help deliver this, we should consider the role of private finance in these programmes, and what mechanisms might de-risk industry investments to support clean growth.
“It’s also crucial that the ISCF supports regional development as part of the Government’s ‘levelling up’ agenda. Currently, almost half of funding has gone to projects in London and the South East, and while we in the West Midlands have secured significant investment, the ISCF should reflect the regional profile of Industrial R&D more closely. It is notable that government funding relative to private sector investment is much lower in the Midlands than in the South East for instance.
The Catapult network, with centres of excellence across the country, strong links to regional industries, and good networking between them, is an exemplar of how levelling up should be delivered. This established and successful platform could provide an efficient and effective means to boost R&D in under-represented regions in accordance with the recommendations of this report.
“We also need to link innovation spending to the education and skills agenda. The UK needs not just the best technologies but also the people to develop, manufacture and support them. These cannot be developed in isolation. Here, WMGs approach of delivering innovation and skills programmes together and in partnership with industry is an established model, allowing degree apprenticeships, re-training, lifelong learning to support industry innovation programmes. As the Government considers responses to the skills white paper, it should consider how future industry skills needs will be shaped by the innovations being delivered by the challenge fund, from transport electrification to digital skills.
Immersion Cooled EV battery initiative, project i-CoBat, wins The Engineer’s Collaborate to Innovate Automotive Award
Project i-CoBat has been recognised by The Engineer in winning its ‘Collaborate to Innovate’ Award in the automotive category. The Innovate UK research initiative is designed to explore and validate direct immersion cooling of electric vehicle batteries.
The project, led by M&I Materials, is a consortium involving battery systems developer Ricardo and WMG, at the University of Warwick which works to commercially and technically validate new technologies for industry.
Funded by Innovate UK, project i-CoBat uses a novel thermal management system for EV batteries using a novel, biodegradable dielectric fluid called MIVOLT, which allows for faster charging than conventional systems and a higher performance battery.
On receiving the news of the award for i-CoBat, Project Lead, M&I Materials Technical Director, Mark Lashbrook commented:
“We’re thrilled for project i-CoBat to have been recognised with this award, particularly since we were up against some incredibly exciting and forward thinking companies. This award is a testament not only to this type of initiative and what its implications are for the wider EV market, but to both Ricardo and Warwick Manufacturing Group for their extensive knowledge, expertise and leadership. Innovate UK have also been incredibly supportive throughout, so this award is also in recognition of the pioneering research projects, like i-CoBat, which they initiate.”
WMG's Principal Engineer, Stene Charmer, added: “I am thrilled and delighted that the ICO-BAT team have won this award. It has been wonderful to work with M&I materials and Ricardo, supporting the research of our advanced battery cell, module testing and advanced simulation techniques. At WMG we are leading innovative battery research and development, and innovative battery thermal management systems, the technology researched within ICO-BAT, are key to realising cost effective electrical energy storage systems for passenger vehicles.”
WMG's Professor David Greenwood responds to the Government’s new climate target plan that was announced today
"Today’s announcement, alongside the previously announced Ten Point Plan for a green industrial revolution, shows that the UK intends to take a leading role in decarbonisation, and to reinvigorate our economy in doing so. Delivering this will not be easy, but this clear and consistent policy is an essential first step.
“The decarbonisation of the transport sector will be a major contributor to delivering on this challenge. The current generation of EV technology performs well in passenger cars but remains too expensive for many people, and the cost of the battery is the biggest factor in this. To reduce costs, two things must happen – significant investment in fast charging infrastructure, meaning that battery sizes can be reduced, and sustained investment in R&D into the technology of batteries and their manufacturing processes.
“Beyond passenger cars there are great opportunities for the UK in micro-mobility (e-bikes, scooters, motorcycles and small vehicles), low carbon freight, rail, maritime and aviation. To ensure sustainability of the products we roll out today, we must also be investing in the technologies of recycling and re-use of their component parts – and these too will present industrial opportunities for the UK to secure material supply chains and minimise environmental impact.
“To ensure our innovation investment benefits Britain’s economy, we need a clear action plan to expand and strengthen our transport supply chain. This includes supporting skills and retraining, widening access to finance, improving the industrialisation of innovation and attracting manufacturing investment to the UK.
"Investment in the industries and people striving to make transport zero carbon is the only way that we will achieve a green transport future that is convenient for its users and achieves long term sustainability."
WMG partners with Pashley Cycles and a team of UK SMEs to bring a novel e-assisted cargo trike to market
WMG is collaborating with Pashley Cycles and three other SMEs across the Midlands to develop an electrically assisted, last mile delivery trike. The trike features an innovative tilting suspension system which will provide greater stability on corners (and therefore speed and manoeuvrability) than a conventional tricycle configuration of the same size.
Supported and part-funded by the Niche Vehicle Network, through a “Production Readiness” funding call, the Articulating Lightweight Electrically-assisted Cargo Solution (ALECS) project, will form the platform for a new generation of configurable products to meet the rapidly growing market for zero-emission last mile cargo vehicles.
Project Manager, Dr Alex Attridge, explained: “This project provides a fantastic opportunity for WMG to apply its knowledge and expertise in vehicle electrification, and in product testing and evaluation, to a real-world product development process, helping a consortium of UK SMEs bring a new, zero-emission delivery vehicle to a rapidly growing market.”
ALECS is designed to carry cargo on a versatile and customer configurable, multi-functional rear platform. It is particularly suited to parcel and package deliveries in an urban environment where fast and efficient multiple deliveries are the key to success.
The consortium brings together the engineering and simulation capabilities of Simpact Engineering, with the high strength, lightweight tubing expertise of Reynolds Technologies, and the composite panelling and cargo structures expertise of Foresight Innovations. Coupled with Pashley’s heritage and capability in the personal mobility, mobility as a service, and cargo cycles markets, and WMG’s knowledge and experience in progressing innovation through the TRL levels into finish products, the project is set to be completed in April 2021.
One of the seven High Value Manufacturing Catapult centres, WMG brings a number of key technical capabilities to the project. These specifically include the development of photorealistic visualisations (in the form of still renders and interactive digital models) of the concept, and the delivery of digital design review content for both desktop and virtual reality environments. WMG is also responsible for the modelling and optimisation of the production facilities in an immersive, digital environment, utilising large scale laser scanning technology and the latest game engine software. Finally, as the consortium begins the physical testing stage, we will be responsible for the instrumentation of prototype and pre-production vehicles, and the subsequent data acquisition and analysis.
Managing Director at Pashley Cycles, Adrian Williams added: “Working with WMG has given Pashley the opportunity to take advantage of skills, expertise and facilities which we would never otherwise have had access to. This is really helping us create a robust and reliable, yet lightweight product which we’re confident will give us a competitive advantage in the market.”
WMG Centre High Value Manufacturing Catapult, with support from Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC) Electrical Energy Storage Spoke, has created a series of short educational videos to help explain the process of transport electrification.
In each episode, the experts explain more about the research carried out at WMG’s Energy Innovation Centre and address the key issues surrounding an electric future.
The videos will now be shared with policy makers, and schools across Coventry and Warwickshire to help support STEM learning.
The three episodes can be found in WMG’s Electric Vehicle playlist here.
WMG is proud to be playing its part in the government’s Driving the Electric Revolution challenge.
Fourteen winning projects, announced by the Business Secretary in March, will share a total of £6.7 million. These projects will help boost supply chain efficiencies in industries affected by electrification, from aerospace to automotive, to energy and rail.
Transport Minister Rachel Maclean said:
“Funding and increased support for state-of-the-art electric manufacturing centres will help people, goods and services move across the nation, in a greener, safer and more reliable way than ever before.
By investing in world-leading science and engineering institutions, we are creating a modern transport system, bringing communities closer together while reducing the UK’s contribution to climate change.”
Co-ordinated by WMG Centre High Value Manufacturing Catapult, WMG at the University of Warwick, will be part of the project consortiums for High Volume E-Machine Stack Manufacture and Lightweight Aluminium Winding (LAW).
High Volume E-Machine Stack Manufacture
This project brings WMG together with Brandauer, and Jaguar Land Rover to improve the production methods, tooling design, processes and material selection used in the creation of rotor and stator components to pave the way to a high volume production of thinner laminations in the UK.
Given the rise of electric vehicles and more electrified systems it is strategically desirable for the UK to develop its own supply chain for the production and distribution of high-performance electric machines at volume. This project seeks to close the gap in UK-based supply of rotor and stator lamination stacks.
Brandauer is already established as a market leader in high precision stampings and pressings in multiple sectors but does not currently have the capability to meet the demand of the automotive sector. This will create the opportunity for Brandauer to not just enter the automotive supply chain, but to do so as best-in-class.
Lightweight Aluminium Winding (LAW)
A consortium, led by Aspire Engineering, with WMG, Voltalogic, Ashwoods Automotive, Hydro Aluminium Rolled Products will develop a winding machine for aluminium wires. The winding machine will provide the first UK supply chain solution for manufacturing aluminium coils. Coil winding is a critical component of eMachine manufacture and is not provided by any UK manufacturer. UK based companies of eMachines have to purchase winding machines from overseas suppliers or have wound coils shipped to them.
Ashwoods and Voltalogic will provide copper coil designs that will be redesigned to use aluminium wire. Hydro Aluminium Rolled Products will provide coated aluminium wire with the preferred electrical conductivity and mechanical properties. Aspire will build their work on winding machines to provide a volume manufacturing solution, and WMG will leverage their development work on volume e-Machine manufacture to guide the partners to the provision of a volume manufacturing solution.
The successful completion of the project will provide a UK supply chain for the manufacture of e-Machine coil winding. Through this, it will enhance the UK's competitiveness to deliver e-Machine manufacturing technology. It will embed the design and manufacturing expertise for coil winding into the UK supply chain.
The project will develop the reduction in weight of e-Machines by 15% without compromising performance by developing manufacturing processes for winding coils from alternative material.
It will also deliver, for the first time, to the off-highway market a single source drive system incorporating advanced IPM motor technology, radically lighter BUT equally as efficient as current IPM technology.
Find out more about WMG’s Transport Electrification and Energy research here.
As the government has announced proposals to ban the sale of petrol, diesel and hybrid cars by 2035 the race to electrify the motor industry is on, and motorbikes aren’t to be overlooked.
The 40 students from a range of departments including: WMG, School of Engineering, Computer Science, Physics and Maths will work together to make the electric superbike possible with thanks to support from Rajputana Custom Motorcycles and Mupo Race Suspension.
School of Engineering student Aman Surana is managing the Warwick Moto team, he comments:
“The reason why I’m doing engineering is because of my interest in motorsports, be it four wheels or two. More than theory and the principles behind engineering concepts, it’s about the practical experience and finding real solutions rather than just what works on paper.
“My work experience at one of Asia’s biggest custom motorcycle shops Rajputana Custom Motorcycles helped reinforce my passion for motorcycles and is the reason Warwick Moto exists.
“It’s great to have the support from our sponsors Rajputana Custom Motorcycles and Mupo Race Suspension, and further support from WMG centre High Value Manufacturing Catapult, leading academics in the industry are helping us to make this possible.”
The students will work in sub-teams focussing on:
1. Battery and Drivetrain
3. Design and Aerodynamics
6. On-Board Auxiliary systems
Superbike rider Tom Weeden has agreed to ride the electric superbike for them, and will be involved in all the testing and trials ready for a self-organised technological demonstration event in July 2020, he comments:
“I’m over the moon to be signing to ride the Warwick Moto electric bike in 2020 and hopefully beyond. The electric class is something I’ve been interested in and keen to be involved in for some time now.
“I’m looking forward to working with the students to develop a package that we can build for the future. Hopefully one day we can go to the TT and take it to the big budget teams.
“The passion these guys have is truly inspiring and I’m looking forward to learning more about how the technology works and adapting my riding to suit the different characteristics of the electric motor.
“I’ve ridden my brothers electric trials bike for the past few years and I know just how much torque and instant linear power these bikes can produce. The bike is based on the Honda Fireblade which has a brilliant handling chassis so should be an awesome platform to build from. Fingers crossed we can bring the budget that this team deserve to put together and develop the technology of the future!”
The students will have the motor and invertor delivered and tested in the next month, and will test the battery at the same time. They hope to have the prototype module testing in March.
The bike will then race at events over summer, but the long-term objective is to compete with a podium qualifying time at the Isle of Man TT 2022.
The team are looking for more supporters to make their first electric bike, you can sponsor them or donate to them here: https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/warwickmoto
Follow their journey:
NOTES TO EDITORS
High-res images available credit to WMG, University of Warwick at:
Caption: The full team of students and academics with the driver, Tom Weeden
Caption: The students and some academics working on the Warwick Moto team with the bike
Caption: Tom Weeden, left with students and the bike
Caption: Tom Weeden, on the electric superbike
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT:
Media Relations Manager – Science
University of Warwick
Tel: +44 (0) 2476 574 255 or +44 (0) 7920531221
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT:
Media Relations Manager – Science
University of Warwick
Tel: +44 (0) 2476 574 255 or +44 (0) 7920531221