Students show their mettle at EVOLVE

Helios, a vehicle fitted with four solar panels, made by students of SCMS School of Engineering and Technology.

Helios, a vehicle fitted with four solar panels, made by students of SCMS School of Engineering and Technology.   | Photo Credit: Abhinaya Harigovind

Amid manufacturers at the e-mobility expo were three teams of college students who exhibited their experiments with electric vehicles.

A team from SCMS School of Engineering and Technology displayed Helios, a vehicle powered by four solar panels that can generate 400 watts of power. The vehicle, made by a 12-member team, can run for an hour at a stretch at a maximum hourly speed of around 50 km. “Making even a basic vehicle like this can cost up to ₹1,25,000. The expenses are a big challenge when it comes to making more efficient cars that run on advanced technology,” said Akash T., a student.

Another four-member team from the same college has developed an electric scooter that physically challenged people can reverse with the flip of a switch. “Physically challenged riders usually need another person’s support to turn a two-wheeler around. With this electric scooter, it can be done with no help,” said Ajith Sankar, a member of the team that modified the scooter.

Students from Rajagiri School of Engineering and Technology retrofitted a Maruti 800 to make it electric and automated. “Specific calculations were made for the Maruti, and we chose a brushless electric motor for it, which is compact and light,” said Jeffin Francis, a team member. “We then made an AI-enabled chip for the car and developed an app, A2EV, to control it,” he added.

Their intent was to develop a car that could be parked in congested spaces by a person standing outside it, using an app. It took six people and two years to fit the existing car with the modifications. The car has lane detection settings and runs at the same speed as any other car of the same make. The team has also developed a mechanism by which the car can be controlled from a distance by a person wearing a VR headset.

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Printable version | Mar 24, 2020 2:10:24 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/students-show-their-mettle-at-evolve/article28231129.ece

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