Champs: mechanical engineering students build innovative vehicle that wins national competition


A group of mechanical engineering students at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette are champions.

The team of Austin Sun Chee Fore, Brett Hildreth, Chase Jeansonne and Michael Tonore earned the grand championship at the recent 2023 Fluid Power Vehicle Final Challenge. Danfoss Power Solutions hosted the competition in Ames, Iowa.

Fluid power involves transmitting power with liquid, which is known as hydraulics, or with compressed air, which is known as pneumatics. The Fluid Power Vehicle Challenge enables students to research, design and build vehicles over the course of an academic year that implement both technologies – as well components of a bicycle. The innovative vehicles combine performance efficiency with speed and power, and spur technological advances.

In addition to the grand championship, the UL Lafayette team won or placed highly in several competition categories. The team was first in both the endurance and sprint races. Its midway and final presentations also took top honors. The team placed third in the regenerative braking category.

The Fluid Power Vehicle Challenge culminates in two final events held in different locations. They include races and presentations in areas such as vehicle construction and testing. Industry professionals serve as judges. Texas A&M won the national competition held in Littleton, Colorado. The events are coordinated by the National Fluid Power Association, a trade association in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Its focus is fluid power technology.

The Department of Mechanical Engineering’s Yasmeen Qudsi, a senior instructor, and John Carroll, an instructor, are faculty advisers for the University’s fluid power team. Learn more about the team and its success at the Fluid Power Vehicle Final Challenge.

Photo caption: A team of UL Lafayette mechanical engineering students recently won the 2023 Fluid Power Vehicle Final Challenge in Ames, Iowa. Shown, from left, are: Yasmeen Qudsi, faculty adviser; Michael Tonore; Brett Hildreth; John Carroll, faculty adviser, and Chase Jeansonne. In front is Austin Sun Chee Fore. Submitted photo