Shell and Kuwait University signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to affirm commitment from both parties to compete in building ultra fuel-efficient vehicles to take part in the 2014 global Shell Eco-marathon challenge for the Middle East and Africa region.
The MoU was signed by Professor Husain Al-Khaiat, Dean of The College of Engineering and Petroleum and Mr. Ahmad Atallah, Chairman of Shell Companies in Kuwait, witnessed by Professor Abdullatif Al-Bader, Rector of Kuwait University (KU), in his capacity as the President of Kuwait University.
“The Shell Eco-marathon is a fantastic opportunity for our students to gain hands-on engineering and project management experience; and apply what they have learnt during their studies to develop an innovative and energy efficient vehicle. We would like to thank Shell for providing this opportunity to our students,” said Professor Abdullatif Al-Bader.
In its commitment to help meet the energy needs of the society in ways that are economically, environmentally and socially responsible, Shell recently launched the Shell Eco-marathon challenge in the Middle East and Africa to encourage the development of new technologies toward smarter mobility and fuel efficiency.
“This MOU reflects Kuwait’s commitment to energy efficiency as it provides a platform for young engineers to stand as pioneers in fuel conservation from the region. We are pleased to collaborate with the prestigious Kuwait University who will carry the country’s flag at this high-profile event,” said Mr. Ahmad Atallah.
Started in 1939 as a friendly wager between Shell scientists to see who can travel furthest on a single litre of fuel, the Shell Eco-Marathon has quickly grown into a global competition to develop solutions to society’s most pressing dilemma – the energy challenge. The competition encourages students to design, build and race ultra fuel-efficient vehicles in a competition to see which team can achieve the greatest distance. In a record feat, a Shell Eco-marathon team achieved 4,896.1 kilometers on a single liter of fuel – a distance which is the equivalent of driving from Kuwait to Manchester in the UK on a single litre of fuel.
The competition is especially relevant in today’s day and age, where according to the International Energy Agency, road transport alone accounts for approximately 17% of global energy use. According to Kuwait’s General Directorate of Traffic the total number of new cars sold in the country increased approximately 25% from 2010 to 2012.
Participants in the Eco-marathon can use any conventionally available energy source including fuels such as diesel, gasoline and Gas-to-Liquids (GTL), as well as alternative fuels such as hydrogen, ethanol, solar and battery electric. There are two broad categories of vehicles in the competition, the prototype category which is a futuristic design or similitude of what is yet to come in the field of automobile engineering, and the urban category which is considered to be more road-legal.
Shell recently launched the Eco-marathon challenge in the Middle East region to encourage the development of new technologies toward smarter mobility and fuel efficiency. With this MOU, Kuwait University joins a host of other leading universities from the UAE, Qatar, Egypt and Lebanon who have signed up to compete in this global event.