About Us

Founded in Spring 2020, SC Formula Electric gives students hands-on experience in designing, building and testing an electric vehicle, as well as showcasing the vehicle at the SAE International Competition once a year. The vehicle is managed by 3 subteams, splitting the vehicle into its major components. Members have the opportunity to learn about and work with CAD modeling and dynamic testing, high voltage systems, hand and power tools, thermodynamic testing, circuitry, and programming related to CAN system, controllers, and microcontrollers.
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"SC Formula Electric has allowed me to challenge my problem solving and innovative abilities like never before. It's a great team, with great people working towards a great cause." - Nancy Aguilar '22

Our Subteams:

Chassis

Powertrain

Systems

Business/Media

Project Breakdown:

Frame/Chassis

The frame is the main structure/skeleton of the car, much like the frame of a house is what supports the final product. It is made of steel tubing and welded into the shape we design. A Chassis is essentially a subframe, a mini-frame that supports components of the vehicle, that attaches to the frame and is supported by the wheels on the ground. For our purposes, due to the simplicity of the vehicle structure, they are incorporated into each other.

Suspension

These are the components responsible for control, vehicle handling (reaction to driver input), and quality of the ride. Suspension team will be a subteam of the Chassis team.

Steering

This includes all the components responsible for controlling the direction of the vehicle, from the steering wheel to the rods that push and pull the wheels in the desired direction. The steering team is a subteam of the Chassis team.

High-Voltage Battery

Our battery will be high voltage ~400V. It’s a lithium-ion battery made of multiple smaller modules connected together – what SAE calls the Accumulator. We are designing our own in 2020. The battery design team is a subteam of the Powertrain team.

Electric Motor

This is what will convert electrical energy from the battery to mechanical energy driving the wheels. The team working on the motor and gearing is a subteam of the Powertrain team.

Communication/ Controller Area Network (CAN)

The sensors/actuators and modules (computers) control the vehicle and need to be in communication with each other at all times. The CAN system is a programmable method of multi-threaded communication, or in other words, it’s a way for a system (computer) to manage, control, and verify current status of all objects under its control, virtually simultaneously (but not).

Cooling

The Battery Management System (BMS), Motor, and Motor Controller will all be liquid cooled. The cooling team will be designing and building the series of cooling features on the vehicle under the Systems team. There’s a mix of simulation, fabrication, and calculation in this subteam.

Business/Media

In addition to the technical aspects, there are a range of soft skills and artistic opportunities on the team: from business plans, to car exterior design, to branding!

Promo Video

"I joined FSAE electric because I wanted to have the opporutnity to put my skills to the test. I also went through a large learning curve working with different people. Most importantly I made a lot of friends on the way there." - Preauz Alam '21

History

In Spring 2020, SC Formula Electric was founded by a group of students under the guidance of USC Professor Yann Staelens. We began building our first car in hopes of exhibiting it on the FSAE racetrack. Unfortunately, with the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic, we are unsure if we will have a competition, but continue to work towards competing in Spring 2021.