Meet the Fluid Power Vehicle Challenge Teams – Part 2

Article By: Mary Pluta

Programs like the Fluid Power Vehicle Challenge are made possible in part by the generous support of industry volunteers as well as NFPA Education and Technology Foundation, Pascal Society, and Tom Wanke Legacy Fund donors. Support these efforts by making a donation.


Twenty-three teams from universities around the country are getting ready to participate in the Fluid Power Vehicle Challenge Final Competitions in April at Norgren in Colorado and Danfoss Power Solutions in Iowa.

The Vehicle Challenge is an undergraduate program that requires engineering students to redesign a traditional bicycle using hydraulics as power transmission as a senior capstone design project or as an extracurricular activity. Students experience real-world engineering under strict deadlines for designing, building, testing, and demonstrating their designs. NFPA members serve as mentors and judges to guide the students in their learning. Through the program, students learn about fluid power, build a network of peers and industry professionals from all over the country and compete for cash prizes in four separate races – sprint, efficiency, regen, and endurance.

In addition to our five Power Partner universities, here are some of the teams competing this year.

Texas A&M is participating in the Fluid Power Vehicle Challenge for the second year. They have a Fluid Power Club as well. Learn how to recruit these students through Texas A&M’s Career Center.

The University of Akron has been participating in the Fluid Power Vehicle Challenge for seven years. Located in Northeast Ohio, their Career Services and Student Employment Office can connect you to these students.

UAB is returning to the Fluid Power Vehicle Challenge program for the second year, and they are off to a strong start. The UAB Career Center is your link to recruitment opportunities from this school.

The University of Cincinnati is a long-time Fluid Power Vehicle Challenge participant. They used a traditional two-wheeled bike, pictured to the left. Recruit their students through the UC Career Studio.

This is the fourth year the University of Utah has competed in the Fluid Power Vehicle Challenge. Get to know these talented students through the Career & Professional Development Center.

Cleveland State University is one of the original teams to compete in the Fluid Power Vehicle Challenge. Visit their Office of Career Development & Exploration to engage with CSU and hire their students.

The students who participate in the Fluid Power Vehicle Challenge have hands-on experience designing and testing fluid power systems, working as a team, and presenting their findings. We encourage you to recruit from these schools. Please reach out to Mary Pluta at mpluta@nfpa.com if you would be interested in connecting directly with the teams or their advisors.

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