The Energy Invitational is an engineering challenge founded in 1998 by Professor Michael McCarthy, Professor of Mechnanical and Aerospace Engineering at UCI. The challenge consists of a time trial that tests student built energy-efficient vehicles. In 2011, Vital Link expanded the college competition to include high school teams.

Competition Day: MAY 2023 - TIME: TBD

HBHS Entry


The HBHS team’s vehicle incorporates disruptive and cutting edge electric technology to this years competition. Our vehicle incorporates the following features:

  • Software controlled Drive-By-Wire throttle system for maximum efficiency
  • Software controlled Regenerative Braking
  • Software Controlled Dynamic acceleration optimized for efficiency
  • Software controlled Electronic Differential
  • Energy Efficient 3-Wheel Tadpole Design
  • Lightweight advanced aluminum frame material
  • Rear Wheel steering with software tuned stability system
  • 16Mhz Atmega 328 Microcontroller

We are very excited to incorporate these advanced technologies into one cohesive control system. You can check out our design video.

HBHS Competition History

This is the first year that Huntington Beach High School will have competed in this competition. Previously, the entry and financial requirements were too high for our students. Fortunately, with the the generous support of our AP Physics Professor, Mr. Egan, we have been able to meet the entry requirements for the first time in 2022. Since this is our first year, we will be starting from scratch without the benefit of past vehicles or designs. We are ready for this challenge!

Competition Requirements

Some of the highlighted requirements for the 2022 Teams include:

  1. Design Briefs & Presentations
  2. Electric Vehicle must weigh less than 350 lbs and include 5 point safety harness + rollbar
  3. Functional Brakes are required to be able to ’lock’ the tires.
  4. Battery voltage is limited to a maximum of 24 volts
  5. Maximum Energy Capacity is limited to 1.5kWh (subject to change)
  6. Steering system must contain “hard stops”
  7. Working 15 watt brake light, horn and rear view mirrors.
  8. Vehicle must have a recording watt meter that is resettable before each heat
  9. Drivers must wear SFI-3.3/1 approved (or higher) clothing. Including driver’s suit, gloves, shoes head sock and arm restraints.
  10. Driver must wear a full-coverage Snell 2005 approved helmet.

The requirements for a steering hardstop and brakes that lock the wheels impose some constraints on the design and preclude a fully computer steered vehicle that could use differential steering.

More Information

Check out our Blog for updates.