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HOUSTON -- Extreme mileage was the goal on the streets here as 42 student teams competed in the 2010 Shell Eco-marathon Americas, a challenge for students to design, build and test fuel-efficient vehicles that travel the farthest distance using the least amount of energy.
For the second year in a row, the student team from Laval University in Quebec, Canada, took home the grand prize with an astonishing 2,487.5 miles per gallon in the prototype category. In the UrbanConcept category, the team from Mater Dei High School in Evansville, Ind., took the grand prize for the second year in a row by achieving 437.2 mpg.
"The competition was tough this year, plus participating on a street course for the first time was a whole new experience for us," said Bruno Leduc of Laval University. "We put a lot of time and energy into our vehicle this year and are very proud of how we did. We are excited to be the Shell Eco-marathon Americas champions again in 2010!"
The 2010 Shell Eco-marathon Americas brings together high school and college students from across the Americas to push the boundaries and design mobility solutions, said Mark Singer, global project manager for the Shell Eco-marathon. "It is a clear demonstration that we're never too young to start making energy innovations and efficiency a priority," he said. "It was inspiring to see these vehicles of the future on the streets of downtown Houston this year."
Student teams were invited to participate in either the Prototype or UrbanConcept categories. For the Prototype category, teams entered futuristic prototypes, streamlined vehicles focused on maximizing fuel efficiency through innovative design elements, such as drag reduction. For the UrbanConcept category, teams entered more roadworthy fuel-efficient vehicles. Aimed at meeting the real-life needs of drivers, these vehicles are closer in appearance to the cars seen on roads today. For both categories, teams can use any conventionally available energy source, including fuels such as diesel, gasoline and liquid petroleum gas, as well as alternative fuels such as hydrogen, biomass and solar.
The 2010 Shell Eco-marathon Americas roster contained 42 teams from nine high schools and 28 universities from across the Americas. Additionally, one guest team from Italy joined the roster with their Prototype vehicle.
The Prototype entries included 28 vehicles powered by combustion engines, five by fuel cell/hydrogen technology, two by solar power and two by diesel fuel. The UrbanConcept entries included six vehicles powered by combustion engines, two by diesel fuel, one by fuel cell/hydrogen and one by solar power.
The Alerion Supermileage team from Laval University used fuel cell/hydrogen technology.
The Shell Eco-marathon Americas energy challenge will return to the streets of Houston in 2011. Shell Oil Co. is an affiliate of the Shell Group, a global group of energy and petrochemical companies, employing approximately 104,000 people and operating in more than 110 countries and territories.
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