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DIMO and University of Moratuwa unveil Formula Student 2016 race car

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“D-Mora P1” car to compete in world’s biggest student motorsport competition

Diesel & Motor Engineering PLC (DIMO), a leading automobile company in Sri Lanka, together with the engineering students from the Mechanical Engineering Department of University of Moratuwa unveiled the D-Mora P1, the race car built by the university students to participate in the world’s biggest student motorsport competition “Formula Student 2016”.

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The D-MORA P1 is designed to be the vehicle for choice for the aspiring formula race car driver, or the weekend track racing enthusiast, at a competitive price. Powered by a naturally aspirated 600cc 4 cylinder Honda CBR engine, tuned to deliver 70 bhp (restricted), it manages to propel the car weighing of 300 kg (including a 80 kg driver and fuel) from 0 to 100 km/h in minimal time, accelerating to speeds in excess of 140 km/h (limited). The steering wheel mounted paddle-shifter provides both the amateur and professional with a memorable formula car experience. The steel tube space-frame chassis coupled with unequal A-arm suspension at the both front and rear gives the customers an affordable race car solution to hone their skills, before entering the professional level.

The Formula Student 2016 is to be held at the Silverstone Circuit in the United Kingdom from 14th to 17th July 2016. The competition is expected to feature over 3,000 students, 5,000 attendees, 250 industry professionals and over 130 universities from 30 countries. Organized by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Formula Student is Europe’s most established educational motorsport competition and is backed by the industry and high profile engineers. The competition challenges university student engineers from around the world to design, build and race a single-seat racing car in one year in order to compete in static and dynamic events, demonstrating their understanding and testing the performance of the race car. Dozens of Formula Student alumni have progressed to Formula 1, and hundreds more are now working at the world’s largest automotive firms helping to design and engineer the cars of tomorrow. Applications were received from teams around the world, and 156 teams have successfully claimed a place for the competition at the iconic Silverstone Circuit, known to be the home of British motorsport.

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The team from the University of Moratuwa – TeamSHARK – is the first-ever Sri Lankan team entering the Formula Student competition and is fully-sponsored by DIMO. The company has provided financial support to build the car and will be funding the team’s trip to the UK. Additionally, TeamSHARK was given expert advice and guidance and had complete access to the facilities at DIMO’s Siyambalape premises in order to build the car.

Addressing the gathering, Ranjith Pandithage – Chairman & Managing Director DIMO, “This is indeed a proud moment not only for DIMO and the University of Moratuwa but for all Sri Lankans. We wish TeamSHARK and their exciting creation – the D-Mora P1– the very best as they race to the finish line in their attempt to showcase the outstanding engineering talents of Sri Lanka to the world.”

Sasiranga De Silva, the lecturer-in-charge of the Team Shark formula student project, says “The University of Moratuwa is the one of the main hubs of engineering and technical knowledge in the country, and, delivers exceptional individuals in the fields of technical disciplines. The project, made successful by the fruitful partnership between DIMO PLC and the undergraduates of the Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Moratuwa, has paved the way for a group of passionate and talented individuals in the field of mechanical engineering to rise as stars in their professional careers in the future years to come. This is the first time that a team from Sri Lanka is taking part in this prestigious international competition.”

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Vijitha Bandara – Director of DIMO stated, “Although we’re a small nation, Sri Lanka has always produced world-class individuals across different fields of expertise – be it sports, science, engineering or any other field. As a responsible corporate citizen, we at DIMO felt it is our duty to help these engineering wizards create their own race car to compete with the best in the world, giving them the chance to make their mark on the global stage and bring glory to our island nation.” He added that the team had put in countless hours of hard work at the DIMO workshop premises and were given complete access to the company’s resources including classrooms, state-of-the-art equipment and machinery for this project.

The project chairman, Harshana Kelasha had this to say about the whole project.”Being students of the Mechanical Engineering Department of University of Moratuwa, it certainly was not easy building a Formula car and take it to UK to race along the world’s highest ranked universities, along with our academic workload. Though I am the chairperson of this project, there were many people to whom the credit should go to. This would not have been possible without the ceaseless commitment of many people, out of whom the most important group would be the team. They worked tirelessly day and night to build this car up from scratch. I should also take this opportunity to thank the academic and non-academic staff of Department of Mechanical Engineering for their guidance and support. Furthermore, the financial, managerial and technical support provided by DIMO, is the main pillar on which this project rests.”

Ross Brawn, former Team Principal of the MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS Formula One Team, returns as competition patron for Formula Student 2016 and will meet students at the opening ceremony. Ambassadors this year include Paddy Lowe, Executive Director (Technical) of Mercedes AMG Petronas F1, Willem Toet, former Head of Aerodynamics at Sauber F1, former Formula 1 driver David Brabham and BBC Science presenter Dallas Campbell.

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