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Pitt's ChemE Car team wins first place at regionals; qualifies for national competition this fall

PITTSBURGH  (April 20, 2012) ... Undergraduate students from the University of Pittsburgh's Swanson School of Engineering raced to the finish line at the Regional Chem-E Car competition at the 2012 American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE)  Regional Student Conference , April 13-15 at the Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken, NJ. 

The Conference brought together approximately 300 chemical engineering students from 35 Mid-Atlantic universities to share technical knowledge, vie for prizes, network with each other, and meet with industry professionals. The Chem-E Car competition is one of the Conference's most exciting events, and the Pitt team didn't disappoint, bringing home first place.

The goal of the AIChE Chem-E Car competition is to design, fabricate, and test a model sized car powered by a novel chemical reaction. Teams then drive constructed vehicles a specified distance between 50 and 100 ft. The winner is the team whose vehicle is closest to the specified distance.

This past weekend, five Pitt chemical engineering students earned 1st place in a tremendous performance by stopping only 11 inches away from the target. The specified goal was to travel 60 feet and Pitt's car stopped at 60 feet 11 inches, four feet closer than the next competitor, University of Maryland (UMD) - College Park. The qualifiers for the National Competition are as follows:

1st - University of Pittsburgh
2nd - UMD - College Park
3rd - John Hopkins
4th - Rutgers
5th - Carnegie Melon

The other competing universities that did not qualify for the National Competition include Bucknell, University of Buffalo, Clarkson University, Manhattan City College, New Jersey Institute of Technology, Rowan University, Stevens Institute of Technology and The University of Virginia.

The qualified teams will compete against 30+ other Regional Competition qualifiers from across the country and abroad in the National competition sponsored by the Swanson School of Engineering this fall.

Team members: John Lyons, Andrew Zmolek, Charles Ringel, Ian Lynch, Renee Millard, Scott Frankard, Travis Bills, Nicolas Graf, Oren Lawit, Stainslaw Gawel, Tommy McFarlin, and Peter Stegman (Electrical Engineer)