DAPCEP Saturday Class

Principal Investigators

  • Dan Maggio
    University of Detroit Mercy

Project Dates:

11/22/2006 to 08/31/2010

Project year: Year 4

MIOH-UTC Project Identifier: K-12 -2; Project

Focus Area:

  • Educational: Alternative Fuels


Powering the Car of Tomorrow


Experts predict that worldwide oil production will peak sometime within the next few years.  With the specter of diminishing gasoline supplies looming on the horizon, engineers are designing alternate ways to power automobiles. 

Through hands-on activities, students will learn about the fundamentals of propulsion systems, fuel origination and production, performance characteristics of alternative fuels, energy flow analysis, technological issues, and sustainability of the alternatives. 

The pros and cons of ethanol, biodiesel, natural gas, hydrogen, and electricity as automotive energy sources will be highlighted.  Students will also use mathematical models for predicting the depletion rate of nonrenewable resources.

  • Activity 1:  The End of Oil?
  • Activity 2:  Alternative Energy for Automobiles – Possibilities for the Future
  • Activity 3:  Fuel from Crops – Alcohols and Biodiesel
  • Activity 4:  Hydrogen - the Silver Bullet?
  • Activity 5:  Natural Gas and Electricity
  • Activity 6:  Which Fuel is the Best?

9th through 11th grades

Final Report:

2007 K12-2 Fueling the Car of Tomorrow DAPCEP class.pdf

Total Budget: $27,228