AF Racing Team

The racecar that the Cadets built this semester left the Academy yesterday for Michigan. The Cadets will be traveling out there this week to compete in the 2017-2018 Formula SAE Competition from Tuesday through Sunday. We stopped by last week to see how the team was doing before heading out to the competition!

Here's some background on the Air Force Racing Team;

"Air Force Racing is a student and faculty run senior design project (Capstone) and cadet club. Cadets design, build, and race a Formula style race car in the Formula SAE competition, held annually at Michigan International Speedway.

Formula SAE is a student design competition where students from over 200 different universities design, engineer, manufacture and then compete against one another, in an attempt to build the best racecar possible. Judged on different factors such as business case, design principles, performance, fuel efficiency, and marketing, every aspect of the modern automobile is accounted for in the competition.

The Air Force Academy first participated in the Formula SAE competition in 1999. Since then, the team has mostly consisted of senior cadets looking for a way to validate their education while providing a positive image for what the Academy is capable of producing. In recent years, the team has expanded to include all classes and majors, to create more manpower and capabilities on the team. Design concepts that have been eliminated in the past, such as ergonomics and aerodynamics, are now at the forefront of the team, due to the extra personnel on the team.

Air Force Racing is a cadet run program, with Officers overseeing the program. The team is split into subsystems, under a cadet team lead. Each subsystem has a subsystem head, and several people under them. This structure was designed to emulate a military structure.

S1.7 is the current car being built. It is a steel spaceframe chassis, powered by a Suzuki LT-R450 single cylinder motor. The engine is run through a Performance Electronics PE-3 ECU, tuned in-house by cadets on our chassis dyno. The car is designed with fully adjustable pushrod suspension.  Brake system is a hybrid of Brembo calipers with Tilton Master Cylinders. The interior is completely customizable based off of the driver size. There is an adjustable pedal box, custom seats for the drivers, and different steering wheels. The car features a limited aero package, with the body made of carbon fiber and fiberglass."

The Competition objective is to, "challenge teams of university undergraduate and graduate students to conceive, design, fabricate, develop and compete with small, formula style, vehicles," and to "give teams the maximum design flexibility and the freedom to express their creativity and imaginations there are very few restrictions on the overall vehicle design. The challenge to teams is to develop a vehicle that can successfully compete in all the events described in the FSAE Rules. The competitions themselves give teams the chance to demonstrate and prove both their creativity and their engineering skills in comparison to teams from other universities around the world."

They will be scored in two different categories - dynamic driving and static judging.

"The cars are judged in a series of static and dynamic events including: technical inspection, cost, presentation, and engineering design, solo performance trials, and high performance track endurance. The dynamic events are scored to determine how well the car performs. Each dynamic event has specified minimum acceptable performance levels that are reflected in the scoring equations."

Static Events:
Presentation                       75
Engineering Design             150
Cost Analysis                      100

Dynamic Events
Acceleration                        100
Skid-Pad                             75
Autocross                           125
Efficiency                            100
Endurance                           275

Total Points                         1,000

Good luck at the competition!

To view the rest of the pictures from our visit go to; Galleries - Extracurricular - Cadet Clubs. Or click the link below.

AF Racing Team