Abu Dhabi Higher Colleges of Technology to compete in Global Shell Eco-Marathon Challenge
Abu Dhabi, 20 April 2012 (WAM) - Shell has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Abu Dhabi Higher Colleges of Technology (HCT) to support engineering students to participate in the upcoming Shell Eco-Marathon event in July at The Sepang F1 International Circuit in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. This partnership with HCT represents the first time that any institute from Abu Dhabi will participate in the Eco-Marathon.
Started in 1939 as a friendly wager between Shell scientists to see who can travel furthest on a single litre of fuel, the Shell Eco-Marathon has quickly grown into a global competition to develop solutions to society's most pressing dilemma - the energy challenge. The competition encourages students to design, build and race ultra fuel-efficient vehicles in a competition to see which team can achieve the greatest distance. In a record feat, a Shell Eco-marathon team achieved 4,896.1 kilometers on a single litre of fuel - a distance which is the equivalent of driving from the UAE to Germany! The competition is especially relevant in today's day and age, where according to the International Energy Agency, road transport alone accounts for approximately 17% of global energy use. In rapidly growing countries such as the United Arab Emirates, the number of vehicles has tripled since 2000 and continues to grow year on year.
"The Shell Eco-Marathon is a visible demonstration of our commitment to help meet the energy needs of society in ways that are economically, environmentally and socially responsible," said Dr. John Barry, Shell's Abu Dhabi Country Chairman.
"Abu Dhabi's participation in this global event offers students a unique opportunity to stand as pioneers in fuel conservation from the region while also supporting to build a modern and progressive nation in accordance with UAE's National Vision 2021." he added.
Speaking on behalf of students and academia, Dr. Tayeb Kamali, Vice-Chancellor of the Higher Colleges of Technology, the largest higher educational institution in the UAE, stated that they are extremely keen to participate in this initiative, citing the benefits for students to apply what they have learnt during their studies and gain hands-on experience in engineering and project management.
Participants in the Eco-marathon can use any conventionally available energy source including fuels such as diesel, gasoline and Gas-to-Liquids (GTL), as well as alternative fuels such as hydrogen, ethanol, solar and battery electricity. There are two broad categories of vehicles in the competition, the prototype category which is a futuristic design or similitude of what is yet to come in the field of automobile engineering, and the urban category which is quite open for mass-production and more road-legal.
Shell recently launched the Eco-marathon challenge in the Middle East region to encourage the development of new technologies toward smarter mobility and fuel efficiency. The Abu Dhabi Higher Colleges of Technology joins the American University of Dubai and the Dubai Men's College in addition to student teams from Qatar, Egypt and Lebanon who will compete in this global challenge.