The 2022 SAE Clean Snowmobile Challenge was held last month at the World Championship Derby Complex in Eagle River, Wisconsin. The ‘challenge’ for university teams participating in this Collegiate Design Series event is to develop cleaner, quieter, comfortable, and cost-effective snowmobiles. Competition sleds are evaluated on acceleration, handling, endurance, noise, emissions, and yes – cold start capability! In addition, team designs are evaluated on the technical merits and on value-added innovations, marketability, and profitability.
This year, Michigan Tech’s Clean Snowmobile Enterprise entered sleds in gasoline (SI) and diesel (CI) categories. Overall, the team placed 8th (out of 12) in SI and 4th (out of 6) in CI. The team also received three awards: Best SI Design, Best SI Value Benefit, and Best CI Value Benefit.
When asked to reflect on this year’s event, Team President Katy Pioch stated: “Even though our sleds didn’t perform as expected, we persevered and never gave up. This is what real engineering and teamwork is all about, working together to solve problems in unique ways, and I have to say I’m proud of how our team pushed through the difficulties of competition this year with optimism and even excitement.”
Kole Augustine, 2022-23 Electrical Team Leader, added: “Having been a part of two Clean Snowmobile competitions prior, I can say that having been back in-person has really shown what this event is all about. All the innovative ideas and thoughts that have gone into each individual snowmobile is outstanding. No two vehicles are alike which makes for a very interesting and fun competition. It was great to interact with all the other teams, sponsors, and judges to share stories about their season and see what kind comments they could give to us leading into the 2022 competition year. Even though Michigan Tech did not place as well as we hoped, the 2022 SAE Clean Snow event was a fun and great learning experience.”
After a safe return back to Houghton, the team provided a heartfelt thank you to all Advanced Motorsports sponsors for their continued support of hands-on learning through Michigan Tech’s Enterprise Program. And, while their 2022 competition season is officially over, the team has been using the final weeks of the school year to bring back lessons learned and get a head start on 2023. Congratulations Clean Snowmobile Enterprise!