Chem-E-Car competitions are held annually by AIChE at the regional and national student conferences. The competition challenges students to design and build a small car powered by some form of chemical energy, capable of transporting a given load over a certain distance. The success of a team is judged on the accuracy of the distance travelled by the car. What makes this competition especially interesting is that the weight of the load and the distance to be traveled is unknown to the competitors until shortly before the competition.


Joining Chem-E-Car is a great way for students to engage in a fun, hands-on, collaborative engineering project, while learning skills that are integral to success in the engineering profession. Apart from working in teams and applying engineering principles, participants learn to design and build projects with a budget, perform lab tests, and analyze data.

Regional and National Competition

Perhaps even more exciting, competing at the regional and national levels provides students a chance to travel with their teammates, and see some of the creative cars built by young engineers from other schools.

No Experience Required!

Students are encouraged to register for the CHE 398 course to learn more about the theory and practical skills used to build a chemically propelled car. The course is 2 credits and focuses on electrochemical battery design and characterization, basic mechanics, programming, circuitry, and soldering.

To find out more about our Chem-E-Car Team and how you can join, contact our Chem-E-Car Chair. Also, be sure to check out the AIChE webpage for Chem-E-Car!