Yamazaki Mazak UK helps student racing team at Birmingham University

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The University of Birmingham student racing team came second in the 2017 Formula Student UK competition with the help of Yamazaki Mazak UK Ltd.

This year saw the continuation of UB Racing’s partnership with the firm, which supplied several machined parts to be used on the team’s competitive racing vehicle for the eighth-successive year.

Run by the IMechE, the competition took place from 20 to 23 July at Silverstone and is well known as a testing ground for the next generation of autosport engineers; with teams having to design and build a single-seat racing car, which is then put through a rigorous series of static and dynamic tests.

Mazak has supported UB Racing in both a design consultancy role and as an engineering resource over the years, specifically through the use of a number of machine tools at its European Technology Centre in Worcester.

Mazak-made parts that have been used on team cars since 2010 include wheel uprights, machined using an INTEGREX i-400S Multi-Tasking machine; differential hangers, machined on a Mazak VCS-430 vertical machining centre (no longer in production); and various hub components, turned and milled from solid on a QUICK TURN NEXUS turning centre.

For the 2017 car, Mazak machined and supplied four sets of front and rear brake disks. The manufacturer has also helped UB Racing devise and engineer a dry sump system, using 5-axis machining on a VARIAXIS j-500/5X, which will be used on next year’s car.

Says Yamazaki Mazak product manager Dr John Liverton: “Formula Student is a fantastic engineering competition and the level of design and ingenuity on display goes above and beyond what anyone would expect of undergraduate students. UB Racing were up against international universities – some of which have affiliations to Formula 1 teams – so to finish second overall, and win the dynamic side of the competition, is an outstanding achievement.

“The University of Birmingham has a special place for many Mazak employees, as we count a number of alumni among our staff. As such, UB Racing has long been the perfect fit in allowing Mazak to support an academic institution that has provided us with a constant supply of talent over the years.”