SCALE TRACTOR COMPETITION
Twenty-seven teams from universities across North America will vie for prizes and global recognition for their design innovations in ASABE’s fifteenth Annual International ¼-Scale Tractor Student Design Competition. The competition will be held May 31 – June 3, at the Expo Gardens in Peoria, Ill. The event is free and open to the public.
The teams have spent the 2011-2012 academic year designing and building utility or recreational pulling tractors that they will present and demonstrate at the competition. Each team is supplied one 31-hp Briggs and Stratton Vanguard Big Block Engine, with the option to run two 16-hp Briggs & Stratton engines and a set of Titan tires; they are responsible for acquiring all other components of their machines. All tractors run on a 10% ethanol fuel blend.
One of the primary concerns of industry today is that many engineering students are entering the workforce with little or no practical knowledge or design experience. Student design competitions and projects are an important key to help prepare students to be effective professional engineers.
In the 1/4 Scale Tractor Student Design Competition, students are challenged to harness the power and torque of a specified stock engine in order to maximize performance in the tractor pull.
Design fundamentals such as strength of materials, statics and power transfer will be major factors as the students design their frame, drivetrain, hitch, clutch, weight brackets and other parts. Although the size and shape of the 1/4 scale tractor is similar to that of a typical lawn and garden tractor, very few parts will be used directly from a commercial machine.
Not only will students gain practical design experience by participating in this competition, they will also obtain valuable experience as they manufacture, build and assemble their own designs.
Many manufacturing departments cringe when design engineers simply throw their designs “over the wall” and assume they can be easily manufactured. Through hands-on experience with numerous manufacturing processes, students will gain an awareness of the capabilities and potential pitfalls in the design for manufacturability and design for assembly.
With a project of this size and magnitude, the students’ skills in communication, teamwork and time management will be greatly challenged and developed through necessity. This project will grant students who can excel and perform under adverse conditions and pressures, with professional skills valuable to any employer.
(Excerpt from Competition Website)
Cal Poly State University
Iowa State University
North Dakota State University
Ohio State University
Southern Illinois University
Texas A and M University
University of Illinois
University of Georgia
University of Manitoba
University of Nebraska
University of Saskatchewan
University of Wisconsin – Madison