Kettering University in Flint is among the universities competing at the 2011 SAE Clean Snowmobile Challenge at the Keweenaw Research Center north of Hancock March 7-12.

Kettering’s team is advised by Dr. Greg Davis, professor of mechanical engineering. Team members are Joshua Briggs of Sodus, N.Y., Steve Brusie of North Branch, team leader Kurt Grabo of Broadview Heights, Ohio, Joell Kroll of Montague, Mike Schippert of Freeland, team leader Bryce Thompson of Powell, Wyo. and team leader Greg Lazorcik of Cornwall, Penn.

The challenge is a collegiate design competition of the Society of Automotive Engineers. Kettering’s team competes in the Internal Combustion category, re-engineering a stock snowmobile to reduce emissions and noise while maintaining or boosting performance.

Thirteen teams are participating in the internal combustion division, with seven entered in a zero-emissions category. The internal combustion sleds are tested for noise, emissions and fuel economy. The internal combustion machines run on flex fuel with a wide range of ethanol content. Competitors aren’t told what fuel they are using until after the challenge.

The public is welcome to Grand Opening ceremonies on Tuesday, March 8, which culminate in the Endurance Run north to Michigan’s Copper Harbor. The public is also invited to the acceleration and handling events, on Saturday, March 12. Winners are announced at an awards banquet later that day.

Participating schools include Clarkson University of Potsdam, N.Y., Michigan Technological University, North Dakota State University, the University of Alaska – Fairbanks, and the University of Wisconsin – Madison, which are each fielding an internal combustion and a zero emissions sled; Ecole De Technologie Superieure of Montreal, Kettering University of Flint, Northern Illinois University, State University of New York at Buffalo, the University of Idaho, the University of Maine, the University of Waterloo (Ont.), and the University of Wisconsin – Platteville, internal combustion only; and McGill University of Montreal and the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology, zero emissions only.

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