Students in Year 10 STEAM have been involved in designing, analysing, testing, making and racing a small scale Formula 1 car as a team. The cars will race on a twenty metre track powered by CO2 canisters and are capable of reaching speeds of up to eighty kilometres per hour.
This project is based on the international F1 in Schools competition, conducted annually by Re-Engineering Australia, in which over 17,000 schools in fifty-one countries compete. In Australia, over 22,000 students compete each year, with countless more completing programs inspired by the competition.
Mimicking the world of a Formula One team, teams of students follow a pathway of engineering and manufacturing disciplines: design, analyse, test, make and race. They utilise real world technology such as 3D printing, 3D CAD engineering design and virtual wind tunnel simulation software to test and manufacture their designs. The student design engineers are also required to design logos, uniforms and a team image while maintaining the College style guidelines. This project also develops skills in problem solving, project management, communication, presentation, teamwork, innovation, self reflection, collaboration, and design: skills in demand by industries worldwide.
As part of the project, each team is matched with a mentor from a university who is involved in the Formula SAE competition. Formula SAE is an international competition for university students to design, manufacture and race an electric autonomous racing car. Participation is highly regarded in many industry sectors. This year, mentors from Swinburne University, Monash University and Melbourne University are working with Siena students. Students will meet regularly online with their mentors and will present their final project to a panel of all mentors.
On Friday, 18 March, the class travelled to Melbourne University to meet with their Formula SAE team. They toured their workshop and manufacturing facility, as well as their office space. They also explored the Telstra Creative Space, a state of the art makerspace. Students then worked with individual members of the Melbourne team to share their designs and get advice for the next iteration of their cars.