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Ohio State Electric Motorcycle sets speed record

The Ohio State Buckeye Electric Motorcycle Race Team has set an East Coast Timing Association (ECTA) record for electric motorcycles. The certified record is 112.349mph (180.79kph).

After only 11 months at work, the newly formed team of undergraduate and graduate students built an all-electric motorcycle to compete in ECTA’s Omega class, known as the altered partial streamlined class. Students used real-world engineering process to design, build, modify and test the motorcycle, with the goal of achieving maximum high speeds.

“We’re very happy with our record of 112mph. And with further tuning, our motorcycle can reach even higher speeds with its current load of lithium polymer battery cells,” says Sean Ewing, team captain and fourth year electrical engineering student.

ECTA, located in Maxton, North Carolina, holds five meets per year, at which public, private and student teams compete with various vehicles in an attempt to break speed records. Vehicles must pass inspections, then are given time on the track.

After this first experience the team is headed back to Ohio State to continue work on the motorcycle. “The ECTA record is an outstanding result, especially considering that the Electric Motorcycle Race Team has barely one year of life. The result obtained at Maxton represents a reward for the hard work and the commitment shown by the team members through the year, but also a great starting point to launch the team into an exciting new season,” says Marcello Canova, faculty advisor and mechanical engineering professor. The team plans to continue work on the motorcycle, improving battery management function and maximizing torque for next season.

Other competition results included James Madison University, which achieved 92mph on an all-electric motorcycle in the same class.

“Although we started as a small team, we have built a solid base of dedicated students,” said Ewing, noting that the team gets its cohesiveness from its diversity of majors, which include engineering, business and photography. “With this record, we’ve set a benchmark for next year; we have a lot of momentum and a lot of talent.”

About the Buckeye Electric Motorcycle Race Team
The Buckeye Electric Motorcycle Race Team is a student-led team at the Ohio State University, based out of the Center for Automotive Research.
Specifications for the 2011 vehicle:
Vehicle name: RW1
Frame: 2007 MV AGusta F4
Motor: Remy HVH250
Motor Controller: Tritium WaveSculptor 200
Batteries: 460VDC (peak charge), 35Ah battery pack consisting of 784 Lithium Polymer Cells
Battery Monitoring System: custom, student-designed, on-board with SD card storage
Battery Management System: custom, student-designed, off-board
Data Acquisition System: Starlane Stealth GPS-3

About the East Coast Timing Association
The East Coast Timing Association located in Maxton, North Carolina was formed by two Bonneville racers, with the idea of providing its members a place to run speed trials in the eastern half of the United States. Originally a World War II air base runway, it is now an event race course. The one mile long race course has a hard concrete surface with an elevation of 210 feet above sea. The organization will be moving to Wilmington, Ohio for the 2012 season, with details released at a later date.