Formula Student 2016-2017
During this season, I was in charge of the design and implementation of the dashboard and lightning system of the new single-seater for the 2016-2017 season.
The original design of the dashboard I was starting off looked like this:
Check out the car from the 2015-2016 season here
This design had a bunch of flaws. Namely, the harness was very unreliable given that the casing that protected it from rain was subdivided in 3 different boxes that were interconnected.
For the new design, I started off by choosing and selecting a matrix display where it would be possible to show more information and that would also be visible with direct sunlight.
I tested a bunch of displays before making the final decision:
After choosing one, I had to implement the library to control it. I programmed the embeded system in C, and had to implement a library to make it easier to display pixels with it.
After some weeks of work, I managed to get it working:
That was the start of the PCB design process, where I was deciding what would be the components that would be included in the dashboard. Finally, I decided for a custom made array of LEDs to indicate battery level, as well as the compliant LEDs for error states and the stop switches. I also added some menu control switches in case the switches we included in the steering wheel would fail.
The design and printing of the PCBs was pretty smooth, but short after I figured out they had some flaws that I had to mend manually with some nasty soldering on top.
Fixing issues in the PCB
After the design of the PCB was finalised, I helped design the enclosing for it. It needed to be dust and water resitant and as easy to manufacture as possible.
3D render of position of dashboard in car
Final fit in the car
Final fit with the wheel
During the competition
Check out some nice pictures of the final result in at the eTech Racing website