Birmingham City University, UK, has announced a new race car programme that it hopes will help address the potential future short fall of engineers in the UK.
The budding engineers from the University’s School of Engineering, Design and Manufacturing Systems are working with Scandinavia’s largest race car manufacturer, Aquila Racing Cars, to learn first-hand the skills required to put them in pole position for when they graduate into the professional motorsport industry.
The new training programme, dubbed ‘The Synergy’, will help students to develop a range of practical engineering skills involved in the design and build of a lightweight and fuel efficient single seater.
Powered by a Toyota 1KR-FE engine, developing 80hp, the Aquila Synergy delivers a power to weight ratio of 211bhp per tonne, thanks to a dry weight of just 380kg.
“This real-world project is teaching our students many aspects associated with motorsports and STEM in just one vehicle,” explained Parmjit Chima, head of Birmingham City University’s School of Engineering, Design and Manufacturing Systems.”It provides a unique real hands-on experience for all our motorsport students as they tackle the project to build a racecar from scratch.
“The Aquila Synergy car kit is now being offered out to other schools, colleges and universities across the UK to assist in the teaching of STEM subjects,” he continued. “This is an inspirational project for budding future engineers of all levels, whether they are at school or university, who will ensure the continued growth and success of the industry in the UK.”
The project follows a recent report published by Engineering UK, which stated that 1.82m engineers will be required between 2012 and 2022. If not enough young people train to be engineers, the UK economy will potentially miss out on GBP£27bn (US$43bn) per year from 2022.