Electric Wheels


Caleb Chacon

Driver Alexander Stone races in the Electrathon in North Kansas City on May 6.

Caleb Chacon, Writer

Projects and builds have always been part of the Green Tech program, but for the first time in the program’s history, 13 students worked to build their very own vehicle: An electric-powered car. 

“Really what our experience was just a lot of trial-and-error,” junior Liam McKinley said. “Kinda just figuring things out as we go to be honest because it’s our first year doing it.”

The car is a one-seater, with just enough room for the driver to lie down in. The front makes room for the legs while the back holds the two electric batteries to power the car.

“We kinda just winged it and put everything where it fit,” McKinley said.

The car was made in preparation for an Electrathon, a race of electric cars that happen across the county. The particular event they prepared for was hosted on May 6 by Minddrive near the Charles B. Wheeler downtown airport in north Kansas City. Multiple schools from across state lines competed to race their cars on the track. 

“The races are each an hour long and you have to see how many laps you can do in the span of an hour,” McKinley said. 

Each car tried to get the most amount of laps around the track before the time was over, making pit stops for repairs if necessary. 

“The races are not determined by speed or just overall how fast you can go,” McKinley said. “It’s actually determined by efficiency.” 

Green Tech raced their car in the first heat, with junior Alexander Stone as the driver. Stone had to gain placements in the race while making sure not to go too fast as to waste battery. 

“I started in last place,” Stone said, “Eventually, I made my way up to P2 and stayed there for a little bit and then I just didn’t have good power management and then ran out of all my juice and got passed at the end.”

After both heats, Stone finished seventh out of the 20 cars in the regular division. While the race is over, plans for a new car are underway for next year’s spring competition.