The National Fluid Power Association’s Fluid Power Vehicle Challenge will expand to two competition sites next spring.
Bimba Manufacturing, a part of IMI Precision Engineering, will host an event April 7-9, 2021, at its facility in Littleton, Colorado. Danfoss Power Solutions will host another event April 14-16, 2021, at its facility in Ames, Iowa.
In the NFPA’s annual Vehicle Challenge competition, undergraduate engineering students redesign a bicycle using hydraulics for power transmission. Students experience real-world engineering under strict deadlines for designing, building, testing, and demonstrating their designs. The project can be a senior capstone design project or an extracurricular activity.
NFPA-member industry professionals serve as mentors and judges to guide the students. Through the program, students learn about fluid power and build a network of peers and industry professionals from all over the country. The students compete for cash prizes in three separate races – sprint, efficiency, and endurance.
The annual challenge is supported by contributions from the Pascal Society and the NFPA Foundation, and through sponsorships. Donors become involved in the competition in several ways.
Donors can mentor a challenge team for the program year, offering technical support as the team progresses. Donors can also judge designs and specifications in midway reviews. They attend the final competitions to facilitate races and evaluate vehicles and presentations.
Participating Pascal Society donors receive visibility on the Vehicle Challenge website and recognition during networking events. They also have exclusive access to the resumes of student participants for recruiting opportunities. Last year, the program resulted in new hires at NFPA member companies.