An energized student team from Qatar University has won the first-ever TAQA GCC Hybrid-Electric Challenge, which was held in Abu Dhabi late last month. And, as race organizers took pains to point out, it was an all-female team that claimed the top spot.

The squad, called Team Gernas 114, completed 101 laps on the final day of racing, which involved using a combination of electric power and gasoline to go the furthest distance using a limited amount of energy (1.5 kWh in the battery and 3.8 liters of gas). The first day of racing entailed going as far as possible in one hour using only power stored in the cars' electric batteries.

The race - similar to the Shell Eco Marathon - was sponsored by TAQA, the Abu Dhabi National Energy Company and consisted of 11 teams with a total of 120 students. Team Gernas 114 beat out teams from schools such as the Petroleum Institute in Abu Dhabi, UAE University, and the Nizwa College of Technology. The competition took place at Al Forsan International Sports Resort and attracted "hundreds" of attendees.

Race organizers called the competition a "huge success" and said they planned on holding another event next year. Check out a three-minute video from the winning team and read TAQA's press release below.



Show full PR text
QATARI WOMEN CROWNED TAQA GCC HYBRID-ELECTRIC CHALLENGE CHAMPIONS

01 Feb 2014

Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates: The all-women team Gernas 114 from Qatar University has won the region's first hybrid-electric car challenge held this weekend in Abu Dhabi.
Sponsored by TAQA and hosted by the Petroleum Institute with support from Emirates Foundation for Youth Development, the event welcomed 120 students from 11 teams to the track.

Team Gernas 114 took home the champion title with an impressive score of 101 laps in the final race today. Their strategy proved to be the winning formula and crowned them 2014 TAQA GCC Hybrid-Electric Challenge champions.

Team leader Chresteen Fareed from Qatar University, said "We are so proud to be titled as champions of the first ever TAQA GCC Hybrid-Electric Challenge. Taking part in this event has been a great experience and has given us the chance to take what we have learnt in the classroom and apply it to a real life situation. It has been hard work and we have learnt a lot but most importantly we have had fun!"

The event also saw a number of dignitaries attend. Dr Saif Al Sayari, Executive Officer and Head of Energy Solutions of TAQA was joined by H.E. Abdulla Saif Al Nuaimi, Vice Chairman of TAQA and Advisor to Abu Dhabi Water and Electricity Authority (ADWEA); H.E. Fares Obaid Al Dhaheri, Acting Director General of ADWEA and Murshid Saleh Al-Romaithi, Senior Vice President Administrative Support at The Petroleum Institute.

120 students, both male and female were drawn from the Petroleum Institute in Abu Dhabi, Abu Dhabi University, UAE University, Khalifa University; the Masdar Institute; the Nizwa College of Technology in Oman; the College of Technological Studies in Kuwait; and Qatar. Each team has spent the past five months designing and constructing their single-seater, lightweight hybrid cars to stringent race design and safety rules.

The competition was split into two stages; the Electric Grand Prix (E-GP) and the Hybrid-Electric Grand Prix (HE-GP). The first stage, the E-GP saw the students driving their vehicles as far as possible in one hour, using only the energy stored in their batteries. During the second stage, held on the second day, the teams combined petrol and electric power to travel the maximum distance on the least amount of energy in three hours. The overall winning team has been determined by the combined results of both the E-GP and H-GP.

Dr Saif Al Sayari, Executive Officer and Head of Energy Solutions, TAQA, said "Congratulations to all of the teams who took part in the 2014 TAQA GCC Hybrid-Electric Challenge this weekend. Special congratulations go to the winning team. These past two days have been a great opportunity for all of the students involved. We at TAQA are thrilled and extremely proud to have brought the region's first ever hybrid-electric car challenge to Abu Dhabi. The event has been a huge success and we hope to welcome more teams back to Abu Dhabi next year."

Hundreds of people visited the event held at Al Forsan International Sports Resort on Thursday 30th and today, Friday 31st. A range of family activities and entertainment took place around the site, with a bouncy castle and play area, food and beverage stalls, as well as a "Think Science" area hosted by Emirates Foundation for Youth Development in the activation village. Spectators had the chance to meet the teams and find out about the cars and the challenges involved in building them.


About TAQA
TAQA, meaning energy in Arabic, is the brand name of Abu Dhabi National Energy Company PJSC. We are an international energy and water company listed in Abu Dhabi operating in 11 countries across four continents.
We strive to be safe and sustainable, and embrace the challenge of delivering affordable and reliable energy and water. We are proud to align our strategy with Abu Dhabi's Economic Vision 2030, a roadmap for a sustainable economy with a focus on knowledge-based industry.
Our interests lie in conventional and alternative power generation, water desalination, oil and gas exploration and production, pipelines and gas storage. We operate in Canada, Ghana, India, Iraq, Morocco, the Netherlands, Oman, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom and the United States.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 15 Comments
      Dude
      • 8 Months Ago
      It seems that the blueprints for this vehicle were strongly based off a velomobile from Velocity Velos. Also, about that video, it was a bit awkward for me to watch, fairly amateur. Good accomplishment but the way they presented it wasn't.
      • 8 Months Ago
      You folks are missing the point. While we as Americans bicker among each other about political ideologies. Other counties are blowing past us technologically and financially. The morality police might give them a hard way to go, but they are laughing at us.
        FromSwedenWithLove
        • 8 Months Ago
        So why don’t you try bickering about political ideologies in Qatar or Saudi Arabia and see what happens! You’ll get to spend the rest of your life in jail! And that’s if you’re lucky! But yeah! Assembling an American made kit car whit the help of who knows how many male superiors… Very impressive indeed!
        sule
        • 8 Months Ago
        As already alluded to, this is similar to the Electrathon held in the United States. It's my understanding they're using the same cars, format, and some of the organizers, etc. http://www.electrathonamerica.org/Welcome_to_Electrathon_America.html. The car pictured above is a kit; not perfect, but it was fun building one, then rebuilding it after an early race crash in Maryland.
        Tweaker
        • 8 Months Ago
        Really. What other countries are "blowing past us technologically"? China is a given financially, can't argue with size.
        2 wheeled menace
        • 8 Months Ago
        This is very true.
      Warren
      • 8 Months Ago
      I don't know which is sadder: That readers of an electric vehicle site don't recognize that they were all using US made electrathon racer kits that have been in use for 22 years, or that the Qataris felt they needed to add gas generators. http://www.blueskydsn.com/kit.html
        Letstakeawalk
        • 8 Months Ago
        @Warren
        So what you're saying is, they've been selling Dan F's car design for more than two decades already? Getouttahere!
          Warren
          • 8 Months Ago
          @Letstakeawalk
          Yes. And nobody wanted them, anymore than they want a 100 mpg car. Enjoy the ride. http://www.theguardian.com/theguardian/2008/mar/01/scienceofclimatechange.climatechange
      Harry
      • 8 Months Ago
      It is a good thing they didn't hold the competition in Saudi Arabia. The morality police would have arrested this team at best, beaten them with canes and then arrested them at worst.
        Joeviocoe
        • 8 Months Ago
        @Harry
        The Saudi women's team drives fastest when chased by morality police.
      FromSwedenWithLove
      • 8 Months Ago
      And in the picture where the car is going to go out on the circuit, there are four men all over the place, while one single woman is passively watching in the background. And the car is just a kit someone assembled. Let’s just say I’m very, very skeptical…
      JB
      • 8 Months Ago
      SAE Formula E for students is very cool too: http://www.global-formula-racing.com/images/cars/skidpad_ecar_800x532.jpg
      2 wheeled menace
      • 8 Months Ago
      Hmm.. they're toying with efficient, aerodynamic cars over there in oilistan? cool :)
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