Who We Are
We're so happy you took the time to visit our page! We are Berkeley Formula Racing, a student-run organization that designs, builds, and races a single-seat car each year. Our goal is to give our members an opportunity to use what they learn in the classroom in a real-world application. We're thrilled to be able to inspire students and showcase our engineering knowledge. We rely heavily on the donations of people like you to be able to build our car.
Since the team’s founding in 2001, we have expanded from a small team to one of the best in the nation. We're proud to have about 60 active members this year from a variety of majors and different backgrounds. Our team is made up of 10 subsystems: Aerodynamics, Brakes & Driver Interface, Business, Chassis, Drivetrain, Engine, Electrical, Electronic Systems, Suspension, and Vehicle Dynamics. We work to ensure that everyone is welcome on our team, regardless of experience or background. Your support allows us to continue to inspire the next generation of engineers.
What We Do
Each car is a year-long project that we start from scratch. We dedicate the spring to testing our current car and the fall to designing the new car. Testing allows us to find areas for improvement, optimize our performance, and validate our designs. Once we have tested our car, we find where we can improve on the following year’s iteration of our car. To optimize our strategy for increasing performance, we use a variety of tools that include simulations and design reviews with alumni. We go through three design reviews and thoroughly debate the choices we make. This is a great way for our members to learn how to apply their engineering knowledge to real-world projects. During the winter and the fall months, we focus on manufacturing. We machine over 300 unique parts each year, as well as, weld our steel tube chassis. Manufacturing gives our members a chance to gain hands-on experience that can include learning how to lay carbon fiber, welding, and using a machine shop. Once we finish the car, we dedicate any remaining time to testing and preparing for the competition. This includes both dynamic on-track events, as well as, static off-track ones, including a business and design presentation.
This year, we have adapted in order to continue making progress under COVID. We are lengthening our normal design cycle to allow more concepts and ideas to be implemented. Our team is diving deep into a variety of projects and pushing our designs further than we ever have in the past. But in order to have the resources to bring these designs to fruition, we need your help.
Here’s a breakdown of our budget for this year:
Electrical is looking to revamp our telemetry systems by upgrading our data logger to a RaceCapture live telemetry unit. This will allow us to observe our car’s performance metrics while on the track and retrieve data that we haven’t been able to log in the past. To take advantage of the new data stream, we are also looking to upgrade our dashboard to a custom LED display.
This money will be used for the parts and testing needed to accommodate our KTM 450 Turbo package. There are many expensive parts that are needed to fully develop our turbocharger, such as tubing and intercooler components in addition to the cost of the turbocharger itself. We also need the capacity to be able to test our setup and ensure reliability before competition.
$2,000 - Undertray materials (resin, epoxy, consumables, etc)
We are developing a carbon fiber undertray this year as part of our aerodynamic package. Because of how large it is (it spans the underside of the car) we need foam for the mold and consumables in enough quantity that we can manufacture it, including epoxy and materials to cure the carbon fiber.
With these funds, we are planning to revamp our steering wheel and braking system. For our steering wheel, we are manufacturing a more ergonomic design that incorporates more features. This requires us to have the necessary materials to construct and design the wheel itself. In addition, we are going to construct a rig that allows for more flexibility in the steering wheel’s position to account for different drivers. This ties into our other project, an active electronic brake bias system. This requires electrical components and an electric motor to control a brake proportioning valve. In order to test this, we have devised a smaller scale setup needing parts manufactured from aluminum and steel.
We would not be able to succeed without the generosity of our community. We know that this is a hard time for everyone, and we are thankful for anything you are willing and able to donate. Please reach out to us with any questions or comments. Thank you again for your time and support!
For any questions or concerns, feel free to reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Check our website out at fsae.berkeley.edu, and follow us on Facebook (facebook.com/calracing) and Instagram (@calformulasae).