CU Invents Electric Automobiles
The Covenant University’s Electric Automobile Research Cluster has developed what it called Covenant University Integrated Dual Engine Automobile system,otherwise known as CU IDEA.
Two saloon cars (with and without Air-condition) and a tri-cycle were some of the research products developed and exhibited by the University as part of events marking the Chancellor, Dr. David Oyedepo’s 60th birthday recently.
The research work sponsored by the University was supervised by the leader of the team who is also the Head of Department of Chemical Engineering, Professor James Omoleye.
The greatest advantage the CU IDEA has over any other electric car developed is the use of both electric and fuel powering systems, which increases its distance coverage by 350%. “That is, if other cars can cover a distance of 50 kilometres before the batteries require charging, CU IDEA is able to cover three and half (200 kilometres) before it will require charging”, Professor Omoleye explained.
The beauty of this invention, according to him, is that the cars can run on both systems simultaneously which gave them the name Dual Engine. Another advantage of the products is that, they are able to eliminate atmospheric emission, which is a concern all over the world.
The research work, according to Professor Omoleye, started in 2009, when Covenant University received research grant from the David Oyedepo Foundation. “Within one year, the researchers were able to design and assemble the dual engine and replace the fuel combustion engine from imported cars. We did the same thing for saloon cars and a tri-cycle, we also introduced Air-condition and it was a success”, he explained.
The dual engine, according to Professor Omoleye, is flexible. It can adapt easily to any renewable energy. “The dual engine is not limited to battery and fuel alone. It uses battery and fuel for now because petroleum is still our business in Nigeria. But we know very soon, there is going to be breakthrough in other renewable energy sources.
“So, the dual engine we have designed has the ability of replacing the fuel proportion section with the fuel cell. In that case, it would be battery and fuel cell. It is also flexible that, if tomorrow the Solar Energy becomes efficient; our system can also incorporate battery and Solar Engine to do the same thing. In fact, any renewable energy system that comes up will be good enough for our system”, he disclosed.
He appreciated the Chancellor and Chairman, Board of Regents of the University, Dr. David Oyedepo, for what he called spiritual, social and financial interest. “He has passion for practical researches that will contribute to the lives of the people in the society as well as create solution where there is any problem. He gave us full support for what would make the work successful”.
Professor Omoleye also appreciated the Covenant University Management, led by the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Charles Ayo, for it full support. “All we are doing right now is to make it perfect for commercialization”, he said.