Initially, the Fusion was built to gain knowledge and experience, to find the right partners, and to prove the world what a team of young students can do. That turned out to be better than we could imagine: We built the fastest electric formula race car in the world! The Fusion is now used to test new implementations for the Vision.
The Fusion is built to beat lap records and is not made to compete in a certain class which means we do not have to comply with any restrictions. How can the car be so fast? Well, it is a combination of many techniques. The powertrain is a very important aspect, as well as the aerodynamics for example. Also, the small size of the car plays a role. Below are some facts presented to give you a better view of the Fusion.
The total car weight is 650 kg, of which the monocoque is 60 kg
The Fusion has achieved a maximum speed of 246 km/h
The car has a peak power of 400 kW
Want to know more in detail? Keep on reading!
To keep the very fast test platform on the road, downforce is a necessity. The car’s main components which produce downforce are a diffuser, a front wing and a rear wing. The diffuser is the floorplate of the car, which is shaped such that it creates a lower pressure under the car generating downforce. The rear wing has three elements from which one is adjustable. The front has a similar setup. Both wings are detachable to test various designs to give the aerodynamicists an insight into the airflow. Most of the work is done using ANSYS Fluent, in which simulations are part of aerodynamic research and is complemented by real-life tests.
The monocoque is made out of a composite sandwich structure, similar to that of other open wheel race cars. The monocoque is made to not only house people of medium length, but also drivers just below 2 meters. The total weight of the chassis is only 60 kg, including bulkheads and paint. Each of our drivers has its own seat such that he or she is completely comfortable and protected from unexpected movements.
The powertrain is one of the main reasons why our car is so fast! Approximately 1/3 of the total weight is due to our battery pack. The Fusion is rear wheel driven, with two Yasa 750 series motors. On Circuit Zandvoort, it has achieved its maximum speed of 246 km/h! Of course, there are also safety components. The battery pack is constantly being monitored by our BMS (battery management system), and in case of one small deviation, all power will be turned off.
In comparison to other open wheel race cars, the drivetrain is not a structural part of the car. Both the front and rear suspension are mounted to the chassis, making this a responsive and stiff setup. The suspension consists of a three-way damper setup from Moton, who also helps in testing and tuning.
Electronic Control Unit (ECU)
We have a lot of sensors on our car to monitor parameters such as temperature, resistance, and to obtain data for models. Connecting the ECU to our computer allows us to read out these measurements. ICT Automatisering and InMotion have developed the ECUs for the Fusion together. ICT provides its Motar-platform consisting of the ECU’s hardware and software, whilst InMotion develops the control algorithms in MATLAB and Simulink. By using the Motar-Toolbox, production class software based on AUTOSAR is generated from the model with a single button push. More information about the ECU is found here.
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