Students recognized for research, innovation and diversity at EcoCAR 3 competition

Posted: June 6, 2018

Five consecutive wins is proof that the Ohio State EcoCAR team can successfully build an energy efficient car, but the more than 20 awards that the team received just this year for their behind-the-scenes research, presentations and diversity are what really highlight the outstanding students who make up this championship team.


simon trask
Simon Trask

Among those awards was the NSF Best Innovation Research Paper Award given to innovation lead, Simon Trask, who also received first place for his Innovation Presentation.

The Innovation Project allows teams to conduct research not directly related to their vehicle but is of high interest in the automotive industry. Ohio State based their research around how drivers behave in a partially automated vehicle.

“With the recent developments in the news and more semi-autonomous vehicles emerging in the market my team and I focused on the human factors involved in these types of vehicles,” said Trask. 

Trask and his teammates conducted studies where a distracted participant rode in a fully-immersive semi-autonomous vehicle simulator. At various intervals the system would alert the participant and release control of the vehicle, the participant would then have to stop what they were doing and regain control.

“The purpose was to investigate the hand-off of control between the vehicle and driver and the impact of a variety of factors,” said Trask. “While necessary, this type of hand-off can have hazardous consequences if done improperly. We discovered exciting results with the possibility to create a real positive impact in the industry.” 


Kerri Loyd
Kerri Loyd
Kerri Loyd, electrical systems lead engineer, was the recipient of the GM Women in Engineering Rookie Award given to an undergraduate student demonstrating outstanding promise, technical excellence and accomplishments through the EcoCAR automotive engineering program.

“Receiving this award meant a lot to me because it was great recognition for all of the hard work that I have dedicated towards the EcoCAR program this year as well as towards the development of my career in the field of engineering,” said Loyd. “I was very honored to have been recognized for my accomplishments out of such a deserving group of candidates. In addition, this award also helped bring attention to everything that the team and I have been doing throughout the year to help promote diversity of all kinds on our team.” 

The team also placed in the top three in eight presentation competitions where they showcased much of the behind the scenes work that takes place. Among those, the team placed third in the Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS) Presentation where the teams are asked to share how they implemented this technology into their cars to assist the driver with safety and fuel economy using cameras and other sensors.


Evan Stoddart
Evan Stoddart
“In less than a year our team came together to design and build mounts, write code for embedded controllers and wire all components into the Camaro,” said Evan Stoddart, the teams ADAS lead engineer. “Ultimately, the ADAS system was able to provide feedback to the driver for forward collision warning and lane departure warning, which was one of the selling points of the vehicle in terms of consumer appeal. We are proud to have placed third because it took such an interdisciplinary team effort in just a few months. Furthermore, it is a big year-to-year improvement from last year where we placed 14th in ADAS.”


Brianna Antinoro
Brianna Antinoro
The teams communications efforts were also recognized this year with awards for best Communication Plan, Program and Youth Outreach as well as a second place finish for their Communication Presentation.

"I'm incredibly honored to have received communications awards for Year 4 of the competition," said communications manager, Brianna Antinoro. "I'm proud of what I achieved over the past year and I want to thank my teammates for giving me support on all of my communications deliverables." 

The team also proudly placed first in the Consumer Appeal Presentation where their vehicle was judged by potential customers.  

“A major benefit for the team is that we were able to go through the entire vehicle design process. During the Consumer Appeal Event, it was extremely satisfying when our vehicle was validated by judge like customers and we were able to win the event.” said communications manager Kristen Kuwabara.

A complete list of the teams awards are listed below:

Pre-competition Awards

  • Best Emissions Testing Event Performance (Control Lead: Greg Jankord)
  • NSF Best Innovation Research Papers (Innovation Lead: Simon Trask)
  • Best Communication Plan (Communication Manager: Brianna Antinoro)
  • Best Youth Outreach Report (Communication Manager: Brianna Antinoro)
  • Best Impact Report (Project Manager: Katie Yatsko)

Competition Awards 

  • NSF Faculty Advisory Award (Presented to: Dr. Shawn Midlam-Mohler)
  • 1st TRC Best Total Energy Consumption Award
  • 1st TRC Best Wheel-to-Well Petroleum Energy Usage
  • 1st Over the Road Event  
  • 1st Communication Program (Communication Manager: Brianna Antinoro)
  • 1st dSPACE Embedded Success Award (Controls Lead: Greg Jankord and SMS Lead: Wilson Perez)
  • General Motors Women in Engineering Rookie Award (Electrical Lead: Kerri Loyd)
  • NSF Diversity in Engineering Award 


  • 1st Vehicle Design Report (Presented by: Brandon Bishop, Phillip Dalke, and Greg Jankord)
  • 1st Consumer Appeal (Presented by: Greg Jankord, Kristina Kuwabara, and Simon Trask)
  • 1st Innovation Presentation (Presented by: Simon Trask)
  • 2nd Communication Presentation (Presented by: Brianna Antinoro and Allison Mellor)
  • 2nd Control and SMS Presentation (Presented by: Greg Jankord and Kristina Kuwabara)
  • 2nd Mechanical Presentation (Presented by: Brandon Bishop and Phillip Dalke)
  • 2nd Mathworks Modeling Award (Presented by: Greg Jankord and Wilson Perez)
  • 3rd ADAS Presentation (Presented by: Evan Stoddart and Subash Chebolu)

A look back at EcoCAR 3

Year 1
Year 2
Year 3