Kuala Lumpur – The UTM Fuel Cell Vehicle team from Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) today received the Shell Eco-marathon Asia 2010 - Best Malaysian Team Award, outshining eight other Malaysian student teams shortlisted for the award. They took home a challenge trophy and RM10,000 in prize money.
UTM’s selection was based on their overall achievement in safety and technical performance, as well as the marketing and communication competence demonstrated during the inaugural Shell Eco-marathon Asia 2010 challenge held earlier this year.
Shell Eco-marathon is a unique competition that challenges students to build a vehicle that can travel the furthest using the least amount of fuel. The competition has been running in Europe for the last 25 years and in the Americas since 2007. It made its debut in Asia in July and had attracted 81 teams from 10 countries. Of these, 19 student teams formed the Malaysian contingent.
The teams from Malaysia fielded 15 prototype and four urban concept vehicles, powered by gasoline, hydrogen, liquefied petroleum gas and solar at the recent Asia challenge.
The UTM Fuel Cell Vehicle team, who emerged tops in the prototype hydrogen category, clocked 598.8 kms/l and would have garnered a podium finish in the same category in the Americas. In the prototype LPG category, the distance achieved by Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia was five times more than the Americas winning team in the same category.
“We were extremely pleased with the immense response from students in the region, and the competition level is something we can all be proud of,” said Mr David Lau, Finance Director, Shell Malaysia.
“We believe that the Shell Eco-marathon has just proven that Malaysian students are capable of being as innovative and creative as their foreign counterparts, courageous in experimenting with technology and science, and unafraid to be benchmarked against those who truly wish to excel,” Lau said.
The Best Malaysian Team Award was introduced in collaboration with the Ministry of Higher Education to spur more participation from universities and colleges around Malaysia. Each team was required to submit a written report to highlight their achievements in competing in the Shell Eco-marathon, and their efforts in the areas of safety, technical innovation, design, and communications.
Today’s prize giving ceremony was attended by Dr. Jumiati bt. Haji Ismail, Advisor to the Development and Student Affairs Division, Ministry of Higher Education.
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Note to Editor
About the Shell Eco-Marathon Asia
The Shell Eco-Marathon is about distance, not speed. The competition challenges student teams to design and build energy efficient vehicles that travel the farthest distance using the least amount of fuel.
Open to high schools, colleges, universities and technical institutes, the programme challenges student teams to put their innovations to the test in two vehicle categories: “Prototype,” futuristic, streamlined vehicles focused on maximizing fuel efficiency through innovative design elements, and “Urban Concept,” focused on more “roadworthy” fuel-efficient vehicles.
For both categories, teams can use any of the following fuels to power their vehicles: conventional fuels such as diesel, gasoline and LPG or alternative fuels such as fuel cells/hydrogen, bio-fuel, solar and Gas-to-liquid (GTL).
The Shell Eco-marathon in its current form began in 1985 in France, attracting thousands of young engineers and scientists from 20 European countries. The Shell Eco-marathon Americas was first held at the California Speedway in 2007. In July 2010, the competition was brought to Asia, with Malaysia hosting the inaugural challenge.
At the inaugural Shell Eco-marathon Asia 2010, Malaysia was the second largest team in the competition with 19 student teams, after Pakistan (20) and followed by Thailand (13), Indonesia (9), Singapore (7) India (5), Philippines (3), Iran (2), China (2) and Japan (1).
The Malaysian contingent was made up of university and college teams from Selangor, Wilayah Persekutuan, Penang, Perak, Pahang, Johor, Sabah and Sarawak. They include University of Malaya, International Islamic University Malaysia, The University of Nottingham, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, Auto Terminal Training (The Institute of Automotive Technology), Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM), Universiti Malaysia Pahang, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, UNITEN (Universiti Tenaga Nasional), Universiti Sains Malaysia, Universiti Teknologi Petronas, University Malaysia Sabah and Curtin University of Technology (Sarawak Campus).
Malaysia will host the annual Shell Eco-Marathon Asia from 2010 till 2012. Thereafter, it will be brought to another Asian country to host for the subsequent three (3) years.
The 2011 Shell Eco-marathon Asia will take place from 6-9 July 2011.