During the magazine’s two-year relationship with the Drive Performance (DP) WRX, we clearly intended it for greater things. We gave it every advantage: a distinct appearance, an STI rear wing, and every modification that Genuine Subaru Performance Parts had to offer!
On July 17, 2012, Subaru of America, Inc. turned over the keys of the DP WRX to Dr. Joel R. Anstrom of Penn State University. Dr. Anstrom will utilize the car in the university’s Graduate Automotive Technology Education (GATE) Program.
The GATE Program was established by the U.S. Department of Energy in 1999 to promote the education of graduate engineers and scientists in the development of advanced automotive systems. Dr. Anstrom is the director of Penn State’s GATE Program, which highlights electrical energy storage, hardware-in-the-loop (the parallel development of hardware and the software to control it) testing, and alternative fuel systems including hydrogen and natural gas.
Dr. Anstrom added, “Our program maintains a dedicated fleet of GATE Focus Vehicles for students to perform their research on, including hybrid electric, fuel cell, and natural gas vehicle platforms. Their research has included gaseous fuel storage systems and engine conversions, including gaseous fuel-injection systems. In addition, several GATE students have performed research to explore the effect of fuel-efficient propulsion systems on vehicle performance and stability.”
The development of natural gas deposits near the university (Marcellus Shale) holds promise for an extended supply of the fuel – as much as 100 years. Dr. Anstrom is preparing to take advantage of the interest and funding available for research into the technology that would make the best use of this green fuel in the automobile industry.