Celebration of Scholarship and Creative Activity 2021
The demand for electric vehicles (EVs) is on the rise. However, the EV industry requires major technological developments before consumer-level EVs are able to compete with traditional gasoline powered vehicles. In 2018, the UWO Fox Cities Engineering Club built an electric basic utility vehicle (BUV) designed to assist in campus groundskeeping operations. The BUV seats two passengers and has a 4’x3’ cargo bed, while also capable of off-road operation and solar charging. This project gauges the efficacy of a custom built, consumer-level EV for utility and maintenance operations, as well as the effectiveness of on-board solar charging for typical vehicle usage. The BUV equals or outperforms a commercial golf cart in terms of performance, having a similar turning radius and peak horsepower, but a higher top speed and ground clearance in a smaller profile.