Maui News

UH Maui Students Successfully Compete in Hack-a-thon Autonomous Vehicle Tech Race

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The University of Hawaiʻi Autonomous Vehicle Technology Team, made up of students from both the University of Hawaiʻi Maui College and the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, competed in a qualifying “hack-a-thon” race for the Indy Autonomous Challenge, placing tenth overall and sixth in the fastest lap competition.

More than forty competitors representing universities around the world competed for prizes and bragging rights as a top autonomous racing vehicle team.

Autonomous racing features driverless go-carts with software and sensors “that act as the eyes and ears of the vehicle, feeding the data to a control algorithm that students develop and tune.”

The hack-a-thon event challenged teams to demonstrate their ability to get up to speed with simulator technology and show their skills at creating and controlling a Simulated Racing vehicle.


The race was a qualifying competition for a $1.5 million university prize competition to win the world’s first head-to-head, high speed autonomous race at the famed Indianapolis Motor Speedway in October 2021.


The UH AVTteam has also qualified for the Purdue evGrandPrix, an autonomous electric kart series, that takes place at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in April 2021.

Team Principal Gary Passon of Maui said “This is an exciting day for University of Hawaiʻi and our AVTteam. We look forward to future rounds, engaging more students and bringing more technology opportunities to Hawaiʻi.”

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