Association of Romanian Engineers in Canada


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A Romanian Engineer is heading the HPVD Team to break the speed record


My name is Victor Ragusila. I am currently a PhD student at the University of Toronto Institute for Aerospace Studies (UTIAS), working on legged robots and how to achieve running motion with them. Before that i had graduated from UofT, Engineering Science division. I have also experience working in R&D, having completed a year at the Institute for Human and Machine Cognition (IHMC), working on a variety of prototype robots.

I feel it is important however to be involved in university clubs and teams. While an undergraduate student, i started a robotics team on campus, building underwater autonomous vehicles. Later, during my graduate studies, I worked on the team that flew the first successful human powered ornithopter, making news around the world. After that projectachieved its goal, together with some of the members of that team, I started the University of Toronto Human Powered Vehicle Design Team (UofT HPVDT).

The goal of the HPVDT is to promote, research and build human powered vehicle. We compete each year in the ASME Human Powered Vehicle Competition with a new high speed bicycle. In 2011, only our second year of participating, we achieved first place overall at this competition. The vehicle is able to negotiate obstacles, speed bumps and carry groceries. It is however not an average bicycle, as it has a maximum speed well in excess of 100km/h. We are preparing to find out exactly how fast it can go, by competing in the 2011 World Human Powered Vehicle Speed challenge in Nevada. On a 6 mile strip of flat, straight road, the fastest vehicles around the world try to beat the 132km/h world record. Our last year entry set the collegiate record at 102km/h, and this year's bike is much faster.

The trip to Nevada is from Sept 10 to Sept 18. I am looking for people and companies interested in helping us get there, by sponsoring us with the funds needed for air tickets and rental car. We can achieve good media exposure for any company interested. An article appeared in the Toronto Star on august 26th about our team.

We are also working to have a reporter from the Star present at the competition in Nevada, as well as a crew from Discovery Channel. Beside media exposure, we participate in many campus activities, such as club fairs, presentations, etc.

Thank You for your consideration.

Victor Ragusila
2010-2012 Captain UofT HPVDT

*** HELP Victor and his team! Contact AREC.

Contact Victor: 416-828-0319 or

Date: 2011-09-04
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