Now that the Formula Student European series has wrapped up for 2016, its time to recap with a summary of each Swedish Formula Student teams season. We will feature one team per day during this week. This will be an opportunity for SVEA members to understand not only the projects themselves, but also how the teams spread out over Sweden and how each have approached and achieved in their own way.
Our third entry of the week is Lund Formula Student (LFS) who are based at Scandinavia’s oldest educational institution, Lund University. The team this year competed at the UK competition and despite being the smallest of the Swedish FS teams attending and having a completely new and inexperienced team, they cleared the major hurdle of scrutineering to line up in time for the endurance event.
2016 was a year of learning for LFS and the result of 71st position may not seem like an achievement but the team overcame many hurdles and will take away many lessons as input into their 2017 campaign. Their team leader for 2017 Anton Sedin explained that, although not quite the result they had hoped for it was part of larger long term strategy “We recruited the team in the autumn of 2015 and although the team was small and inexperienced, we had the aim of making it to the UK to compete. The plan for 2017 is that it will be a build-up year with 2018 and onward we plan to be a top 15 team again.”
Three years is quite long term considering most students study five years at university, so I ask Anton to explain more about what their plans consist of. “We have worked with improving our relations with the various faculties of Lund University. We do this to integrate Formula Student as a concept more thoroughly with the existing courses and in this way each student is able to combine more of their education together with the project.” This is very much in keeping with the original concept of Formula Student, which was setup by Ford, Chrysler and GM in 1981 and supported by SVEAs partner organisation in the USA, the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE). They did so because they felt that engineering students they recruited lacked the practical knowledge of building a vehicle and the overall phases of such a project.
How does the year look from a development perspective “during the autumn term we evaluate the previous year’s car and decide on what to improve on for the coming year. We then design the various subsystems so that we have a complete CAD-model before the Christmas break. When school resumes in January we start manufacturing and testing.” Quite a short and straight forward explanation of what is a complex product development project but Anton explains that there are more challenging times as the project progresses “The run-up to the competition is an extremely stressful time because deadlines are quite tightly packed and there are always unexpected and unplanned issues that occur. It is tough not knowing whether we were going to make it or not. But we powered through and this led to the highlight of the year – getting the car through scrutineering at the competition.” Important lessons for the team and Anton is keen to stress his appreciation for their fellow team members “alongside the practical experience, everyone has learned a lot about what it's like working as a group toward a common goal.”
The SVEA board and members wish you all the best and look forward to your return in 2017!
Engine: Honda CBR600RR 07
Chassis: Steel space frame
Track: 1240mm front 1200mm rear
Suspension: Direct actuation front & rear