The AEV that Team Q constructed over the semester is a working prototype of a vehicle that could handle the transportation requirements within the MCR. Four specific characteristics helps the AEV stand out within the crowd:
- The AEV is fast, relative to the other AEVs. The final time for the AEVs run was 44 seconds, which was within the top 5 fastest AEVs in the class. Thus, the team’s AEV can accomplish tasks quickly and within time constraints.
- The AEV required a low capital cost. The overall cost of the AEV itself was $158,400, which helped the AEV project as a whole stay under the $600,000 budget. One helpful change to the AEV design that was different from a lot of other AEVs was the removal of 4 brackets connecting the wings and the body, which saved the team roughly $5,000.
- The AEV is easily controlled and thus, very predictable. The inconsistency that some other teams experienced was not as large a factor for our AEV. The team completed the Final Performance Test with no accuracy penalty, which is a testament to how easily controllable the AEV is. The reason for the consistency of the AEV was the usage of location functions and power braking. The location functions, goToAbsolutePosition and goToRelativePosition, allowed the team to control the distance the AEV traveled before changing its power and braking it reliably. The power-braking capabilities of the AEV allowed the team to stop the AEV at a specific point on the track, rather than rely on coasting.
- The AEV is a very safe vehicle and can be used to safely transport passengers with very little risk. The team did not receive any safety penalty the entire year and the AEV did not fall off of the track a single time. Safety is a huge concern when transporting people and thus, safety is one of the most important characteristics of the AEV.