50,000 euros for TU/e car on formic acid11 November 2015
At the annual convention of technology foundation STW last Thursday, Team FAST received a 50,000-euro Open Mind Grant. It's a way for STW to show it believes in the research proposal of a group of eighteen TU/e students who want to build a car that runs on formic acid.
FAST team member Max Aerts excitedly talks bout the day. “We've applied for the grant just like 134 other applicants. We were super happy to be among the fifteen finalists who were invited to pitch their ideas in front of a panel of judges, since the grant is really meant for researchers that are on the university payroll. We are the only student team. We came here to network. We never thought we'd actually win.”
“The morning started with a thirty-second pitch, after which we were subjected to several questions from the jury”, he continues. They did that before: in June, Team FAST won the Brains Award in the sustainability category after a similar inquisition. “Today, the judges wanted to know why the industry should switch to formic acid, considering research and development into hydrogen has barely started. We believe formic acid is a better alternative because the infrastructure for the liquid is already here, and because it's just more practical than gas.”Formic acid can be made from hydrogen and carbon dioxide. One of its major benefits is it doesn't explode, and it's easy to transport."
Team FAST will be using the 50,000 euros to build a passenger car that should be completed before the end of the academic year.
Open Mind is a grant program STW set up as an acessible grant for daring research. The grant challenges scientists (not students, necessarily) to think out of the box and propose original research plans that have an impact on society.
For a while now, TU/e student Guido Buntinx and his friend Christophe Westerveld (student of Zuyd University of Applied Sciences) have been attracting a lot of attention with their 'electric beer crates'. Limburg's regional TV station and the TV news program Editie NL also got wind of their creative initiative. The short internet videos showing them riding along on the public highways have been watched multiple times.
The Department of Applied Physics needs to make significant savings: one million euros on a total annual budget of nine million. This was announced last week Wednesday by Departmental Dean Gerrit Kroesen at a staff meeting. The draft reorganization plan must be ready by the end of November and, says Kroesen, compulsory redundancies cannot be ruled out. The Departmental Council is holding talks today with the Departmental Office.
The fourth day of the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge in Australia has come to an end and Solar Team Eindhoven is clearly leading the Cruiser Class. Despite earlier transport problems and the limited window for testing on site, TU/e solar car Stella Vie is performing in the outback “far beyond expectations”. With some 900 kilometers to go, a third world title seems almost a dead cert for the team from Eindhoven - but this is no time for complacency.
At this university there are students who are not taking any classes, but they are still forced to pay the full sum of their tuition fee. How is that? When you take a look at what they are doing instead of following courses, their reasons become clear. They form one of the most important cornerstones of the TU/e, they are the student board members and part of student teams.
Some rooms in De Plint in Luna are not yet ready to use and so the associations are having to put the brakes on some of their activities. The building contractor has run into delays and current expectations are that everything will be ready by early November. There is evidently so much stuff in the Bunker that it can't all be stored in Luna. Bar Potential hopes to open its doors around New Year's. The cultural associations have just moved from the Bunker to Luna.