Virtual Car Final Report

Here are the guidelines for the Final Report for the Virtual Car project.

Please refer to the Virtual Car Deliverables for specific grading criteria.

The text of the report should be in 12-point type, single spaced. Your team should include the following main sections:

Section 1: Introduction

The introduction is a short section, one page or less, that briefly lays out the problem. In other words, give the reader some background about the Virtual Car project. Assume that the reader has never heard of this project, and you wish to fill them in so that they understand what the rest of the report is about. The introduction should end with a statement of goals and objectives. After reading this section, the reader should know in broad terms what you were trying to do, and your goal in doing this.

Section 2: Design Documentation

This section consists of several sub-parts.

a) Shortcomings of the default vehicle

This section should be about one page. What were the shortcomings of the default vehicle that your team built on the first day? What features of its design were hampering it? What motivated you to change the design? Don't talk about what you changed yet, just criticize the default design so the audience feels like it's time for a change. You are simply making the case for the need for a new design. This primes the audience to hear about what you did.

At the end of this section, provide one paragraph that outlines the key aspects of your new design. Contrast its unique aspects to those of the default vehicle. Keep it short. Encapsulate the main ideas of your design and describe, in a very general way, why you believe they should lead to improved performance.

b) Drawings

To fully explain how your new design works, you will need to refer to drawings of the design. Choose the types of drawings that you will need, and draw them using bold, clean lines. Number each part that you will be talking about. You will refer to these numbers when you describe how the design operates.

c) Detailed description

Here's where you describe exactly how your new design works, referring to the drawings, and to each numbered part, as you go.

If you have clever mechanisms, talk about those and the job they perform. If you have a clever shape, talk about the shape and how it improves performance. Explain how your specific choices for spring width, wheel size, spring length, or anything else, lead to improved performance. Justify these features by explaining the engineering reasoning you used (for example, the spring was made wider than usual to increase acceleration and speed, or the spring was made long to increase distance, or the wheels were increased in size to increase distance with the same length of spring.)

When you created the drawings, you should have numbered the critical parts that you will be talking about here. In the text, refer to these numbers as you explain how each part works.

For example:

"The drive wheel (7) is attached to drive axle (9) by rubber bands (15 and 16) which firmly grip the wheel to the drive axle by means of friction."

Another example:

"Compared to the default vehicle, the new design has a spring (13) that is twice as long, which provides for twice the revolutions of the drive axle (9), leading to an exceptionally long travel distance."

Section 3: Performance Results

This section presents the results of the final competition. You should describe your car's actual performance in the Speed and Distance competition and compare it to how you expected to perform. Knowing how you performed, how would you change your final design if you could do it again?

Section 4. Conclusions

Bring out the major points that you feel are worth emphasis. Make any recommendations you feel are appropriate. This should be a brief, bottom-line summary. You generally don't bring anything new into a conclusion section. Instead, this section simply restates and emphasizes key points from the body of the report.

Appendix 1: Materials Research Memo

As an appendix, please include the Materials Research Memo.

Appendix 2: Team Member contributions

Please list the members of the team and the functions they performed during the project.

In order to be judged for the Design Competition, you must turn in your vehicle for judging. It will be available to pick up during the scheduled Final Exam hour for this class (8:30-10:30 Monday) or afterwards in Room 200 Engr Annex.