Students Compete for Snowmobile Design


Having spent a great deal of time in Vermont this past winter, I realize that snowmobiles are a means of transportation when the white fluff is overwhelming. In addition, they serve a great purpose in the northern parts of the world when it comes to hauling cargo. However, any way you look at it, snowmobiles are far from being environmentally friendly. On March 19, 2007 the National Science Foundation (NSF) will be supporting four teams to compete in the SAE Clean Snowmobile Challenge. The goal is to design a snowmobile with lower environmental impact, less noise, fewer emissions and a lighter footprint–all without sacrificing the performance snowmobile enthusiasts love. Taking place in Houghton, Michigan the competition is in its fifth year and attracts teams of undergraduate engineering students from colleges and universities from across North America who are involved in the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE). The competition grew from the demand for cleaner snowmobiles in national and state parks and forests. One alternative to restricting or banning snowmobiles on public lands is to find appropriate technological solutions to noise and pollution problems. Via ::The Sietch Blog ::Photo courtesy of CNN