Duke University Motorsports is a student group that designs and builds open wheel, single seat race cars to compete in the Formula SAE competition sponsored by the Society of Automotive Engineers. The team consists of Duke students from both Pratt and Trinity, in all classes. The purpose of the team is to provide students with a way to gain practical design and manufacturing experience in a fun and challenging setting.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Aero and Active Aero Progress

Aero and active aero are almost done now.  The actuator is now attached to its link solidly now, and the last step on the active aero part is to tune the PID parameters on the motor controller.  We finished putting together the rear wing yesterday too, and so after a little bit of sanding/trimming, the rear wing will be finished.  The last step will be to put together the mounts, which are all done, but just not assembled.

Rear wing put together

More pictures and process discussion after the jump.

We had all the parts already at the beginning of the week, but there was still a lot of prep work that had to be done before the entire wing could be put together.  First, both wing sections needed some trimming and sanding to make sure the mating interfaces were clean.  Also, I had accidentally forgotten to cut the second element to length before we put the aluminum endplates on (oops), so we had to cut the second element in two places to remove some length.  Basically, we kept the endplate section, cut out some more of the wing, and hot glued the two parts back together (they will get attached via carbon fiber later).  Also, the mounts had to be epoxied on, and the rear wing mounts also had to be reinforced with aluminum plates (since the mounts are ABS plastic from the rapid prototyper)

Aero actuator mount epoxied on
The plates were CNC milled.  They were epoxied onto the RP sections
Once this prep work was done, could fix the second element of the rear wing with carbon fiber and epoxy.  This portion was vacuum bagged.
Putting down a strip of CF to reinforce the cut
Also, we put down some carbon fiber as a structural attachment on the rear wing mounts:
Finally, once these sections set, we put the rear wing together.  The second element of the wing was bolted in place, the large section was hot glued to the endplates.  

Airbrake anyone?

We then cut strips of carbon fiber, used spray adhesive to hold them in place, and epoxied everything together.
Laying down strips of carbonfiber

And a couple of pics of the active aero stuff:
Actuator and actuator rod attached

Aero controller sitting in (half) its case
And one more random picture of the carbon fiber shifter rod, which we ran yesterday (and it didn't break.. yet)

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