The student team InVentus from the University of Stuttgart successfully took part in the 11th Aeolus Race in the Netherlands from August 23 to 25 2018 and was able to win the runner-up title. The event, that takes place annually in Den Helder, is one of to the world’s four largest sustainability races. The team is distinguished that is able to drive most efficiently against the directly opposite wind direction with its self-made wind-driven vehicle. In total seven teams from six countries participated in this year’s competition
Professor Dr. Po-Wen Cheng, Head of the Stuttgart IFB Chair for Wind Energy, congratulated the team on its renewed success, “The fact that our students have regularly been among the best since the beginning of the competition is a wonderful thing and shows the quality of teaching at our institute and at the University of Stuttgart. The interdisciplinary interaction between many faculties in particular is important in this project and was realized in excellent fashion.“
During the three racing days the different teams competed against each other in a total of four categories: in the average speed over long distances, the highest maximum speed achieved, the acceleration over a distance of 100m and the innovation of the respective wind-driven vehicle. The speed is thereby stated in percentage of the current wind speed in order to make the races of the various teams taking place after each other comparable. The team InVentus was first in the innovation categorie und achieved high places in the other categories.
The Stuttgart students were able to score points with the innovative power of their vehicle: for the first time since the competition came into existence they were able to realize a vehicle with a purely mechanical drive train and an additional, purely electrical drive train. They were thus able to commence with a hybrid system with 2 rotors to generate energy. Furthermore, they achieved a maximum relative speed of 95% of the current wind speed, thus setting a new German record.
The team InVentus has existed since 2007 and this year celebrates its eleventh jubilee, just like the competition itself. It currently comprises 15 students who together combine the most diverse range of specialist disciplines. They themselves completely designed, calculated and built their third version of the wind-driven vehicle since they came into existence. The students thereby not only received support from numerous institutes from the University of Stuttgart, but also from a diverse range of sponsors from the region.
The team InVentus is steadfastly determined to promote the further development of the vehicle in order to drive more quickly than the wind itself solely through the power of the wind. The declared goal for next year’s competition is therefore to achieve over 100% of the wind speed and to catch up with this year’s winning team.