Meet the 2020/21 Fluid Power Vehicle Challenge Teams

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 and Pascal Society donors. Support these efforts by making a donation.


The NFPA Fluid Power Vehicle Challenge has officially launched for the 2020/21 school year. Two final competition events will be held this cycle. The first will be hosted by Norgren in Littleton, Colorado on April 7-9 and the other will take place the following week, hosted by Danfoss Power Solutions in Ames, Iowa on April 14-16. Both events will include a vehicle inspection, design assessment, sprint race, efficiency challenge, endurance challenge, and a team presentation. Here are this year’s participating teams:

Cal Poly State University
Cleveland State University
Iowa State University
Kennesaw State University
Michigan Technological University
Milwaukee School of Engineering
Murray State University
Northern Illinois University
Purdue University
Purdue University Northwest
South Dakota State University
University of Akron
University of Cincinnati
University of Louisiana at Lafayette
University of Nebraska -Kearney
University of Utah
West Virginia University Institute of Technology
Western Michigan University

Designed to increase the number of university students learning about and getting hands-on experience with fluid power, the Fluid Power Vehicle Challenge program tasks teams with redesigning a traditional bicycle using hydraulics as the mode of power transmission and are required to include:

  • An accumulator for storing energy
  • An electronic control system for the vehicle
  • Regeneration technology

This university capstone project gives students the opportunity to gain real-world experience. Teams place component orders with Vehicle Challenge Parts Suppliers, get an inside look into the industry through the project guidance they get from NFPA members in the mentor program, and have the ability to network with industry representatives and their peers throughout the program. Additionally, each competing team pairs up with a fluid power industry mentor to help them stay on track and to address their questions or difficulties. Teams are required to contact their mentor at least four times throughout the year and submit a summary of their discussions and interactions.

To get involved as an industry judge, sponsor, or learn more about the NFPA Fluid Power Vehicle Challenge, contact Stephanie Scaccianoce at sscaccianoce@nfpa.com.