Published on December 23rd, 2010 | by Joe0
DEVELOPMENT OF HYBRID TECHNOLOGY FOR BRP’S CAN-AM SPYDER ROADSTER
“By deciding to establish R & D centres, BRP confirmed its commitment to accelerate the development of cleaner and more efficient new technologies,” stated José Boisjoli, BRP’s president and CEO. “The powertrain technologies used in our snowmobiles, side-by-side vehicles, and outboard engines are already the best in the industry in terms of fuel consumption, and are milestones towards our goal of providing consumers with increasingly eco-performing technology.”
The CTA is at the heart of innovation, and the cooperation between the Université de Sherbrooke and BRP is an unparalleled asset in research and development projects.
“As included in our strategic plan, Réussir 2010-2015, the University is reviving its distinctive approach to research and pursuing its commitment to socio-economic development in the Estrie region and the province,” said principal Luce Samoisette. “Without a doubt this applied research project will produce a skilled new generation of engineers and have a significant impact on several levels.” Through this initiative, 20 post-graduate students will become highly trained.
Original design challenges
The project’s research team is led by Professor Alain Desrochers from the Université de Sherbrooke’s Mechanical Engineering Department and includes about 30 people from the University and BRP. The team will need to be original during the development of the components. The roadster’s compact size alone poses major challenges. Rather than modifying existing hybrid technology, the researchers will have to design an entirely new propulsion system.
“Creating a three-wheel vehicle as opposed to a hybrid car poses significant design challenges that require a very high degree of innovation,” said professor Desrochers. “These challenges include the lack of space to accommodate hybrid motorization, cooling problems, aerodynamics, vehicle weight, and noise. Everything must be studied and modified.”
Over the next four years the CTA will produce three generations of prototypes and their components. The final product must pass the test in terms of performance, reliability, durability, and economic mass production. Any technological innovations will be potentially transferable to other types of vehicles and products.
About the CTA
The Centre de technologies avancées BRP – Université de Sherbrooke (CTA) is the result of a partnership between BRP and the Université de Sherbrooke. Its mandate is to develop new cutting-edge technologies in the field of motorized recreational vehicles. Since it opened in 2006, the CTA has developed two technologies that have been integrated into BRP products: a technology used in manufacturing the hulls of the new generation of Sea-Doo watercraft, and the five-speed semi-automatic transmission available on Can-Am Spyder roadsters. The CTA currently employs more than 70 researchers and students, and expects to become self-financing as of 2011.