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ESCORPIO - STEERING GEAR

2017

 

The steering system and links used in Escorpio 17 are the same of the previous vehicle, but with different wheel muontings. The steering wheel acts on a shaft connected to the vertical lever, that can be seen in the picture.

Steering wheel

 

Since 2016, due to reactivity and maneuvrability issues, the old steel cables system has been dismissed.

Infact, we decided to realize a brand new steering wheel, connected to a carbon fiber column attached under the front bridge so that, while rotating, it actuates a track rod system connected to the wheel mounts. After the first test session on the racetrack of Modena, our development driver stated he was satisfyied with the level of genuineness accomplished by the vehicle.

 

Also, the new steering wheel is equipped with a LCD display, which allows the driver to keep under control all the main working parameters, such as instant and average speed, all the laptimes and the energy consumption; it is also possible to change the motor setup through a switch botton, choosing the best one depending on the amount of torque required.

 

 

2015: Back to front wheels steering

 

Since 2015 edition of the Shell Eco Marathon, the official rules state that the vehicles must turn by the rotation of the front wheels.

The main reason of this decision involves the dinamic stability of the prototypes, which in this way becomes consistently higher than it was with the back wheel steering system.

 

Thus, the new solution permits higher cornering speed, with a consequent lower kinetic energy waste, but on the other hand, it forces the teams to enlarge the body of the prototypes to contain the rotation of the wheels.

 

This also introduces a new challenge for the team engineers: to detect, study and minimize the mechanical play and deformations caused by cornering forces while steering, in order to obtain the maximum stiffness, to reduce speed loss and to make sure the tyres work in the most efficient conditions.

2014

 

A tubular structure supports the wheel and the motor; the steering momentum is applied through a carbon fiber link connected to the right side of the frame.

2013

 

The steering movement is obtained by using two levers, moving on the longitudinal axis and acting on a cable system.

Lever steering

 

The steering is obtained from the right lever, that is connected by bolts to the slider. The pilot also has a left lever, and both levers are connected by two steel cables strung in two sheaths.

Slider

 

On the opposite side of the hinge, a cursor moves inside a sliding guide. In this way the fork distributes the load in a symmetrical manner on both sides, without causing any twisting of the body.

First test

 

The cursor control is obtained through a system of levers and ball joints. The first tests were performed on a test frame with the same measures of the body.

Rear wheels: why?

 

The need to minimize aerodynamic resistance led us to minimize the front section of the vehicle.

 

To deal with this, we decided to design a single rear wheel steering, to design the front frame as thin as possible.

The rear wheel is mounted on a fork in tubular aluminum hinged on one side.

London 2019: 3rd place in the battery electric prototypes category.

 

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