PCBWay 3rd PCB Design Contest

Body Control Module PCB - MAC Formula Electric

MAC Formula Electric


8K Scene Render - PNG.png

Team Overview

MAC Formula Electric was started in 2015 when the McMaster Formula Hybrid team disbanded. It began as a small group of dedicated students who have grown the team into what it is now, a team of over 80 active members working on various aspects of the car. The team spans over multiple faculties outside of engineering, including a dedicated business team which creates a realistic and functional group dynamic. As the group of original founding members graduated this past year, our team has embraced the opportunity to re-structure and accept new, ambitious young engineering students who will build upon what has been achieved so far. The team is currently completing the build phase of our fully electric, all wheel drive, formula 1 style racecar, to compete in competiton againts other University teams worldwide coming summer 2019.

About the Competition

Formula SAE and Formula Student challenge students to build a single seat, open wheeled racecar to compete against other schools at annual international competitions. There are many areas of evaluation in these competitions including engineering design, business and cost as well as numerous dynamic events. 

Team Management

Every year, the team starts out be creating new goals. From there, a plan of action is formed, deadlines are established, and tasks are distributed between team members. Although Formula Student is an engineering competition, the team requires more than just engineering students. As a result, a conscious effort is made to appeal to students with a variety of backgrounds, interests, and areas of study. This ensures that we have the best people in the right roles. The team then proceeds to budget and design the car. Once this task is completed simulations are run to optimize the theoretical designs. From there, manufacturing and assembly of components commence. Once the car is completed, a demanding testing regime ensures validation of designs before the car and team are sent to competition.

Why Electric?


MAC Formula Electric recognizes the necessary shift to the use of cleaner technology. By using electric vehicles as a platform for innovation the team hopes to promote the development of a socially, economically, and environmentally sustainable future.

High Performance

With efficiencies of over 90%, electric motors are able to transmit a higher percentage of power to the wheels than an internal combustion engine. Moreover, with the ability to provide maximum torque at any speed, performance figures for MAC Formula Electric’s first car rival the top combustion and hybrid automobiles.

Future of Transportation

By getting hands-on experience in high-performance, environmentally-friendly technologies, our members are well equipped for the industry that awaits them upon graduation.

Technical Information


The vehicle chassis, 600V battery pack, and inverter enclosures are all made of advanced, lightweight composite materials, including carbon fibre and kevlar. The full carbon chassis allows for an extremely lightweight vehcile, for maximum performance.


Carbon fibre chassis, manufactured in house at McMaster University


The vehicles electrtical system consists of a 600V, custom made battery pack, as well as a 12V battery. The HV battery pack powers the drivetrain of the vehicle, which consists of 4 independant, in hub electric motors. The 12V battery then powers all of the control systems for the vehicle, which is implemented on custom PCBs developed entirely by the team. A brief overview of the boards used in the car is below.

Accumulator Control Board

This board provides a direct interface between the battery management system and the vehicles communication network, and also includes competition mandated safety circuitry. The board is located directly in the HV battery pack.


3D render of the Accumulator Control Board

Body Control Module

This board is the main board that controls all systems of the car, appart from the motors. The board has 2 microcontrollers for parellel processing of vehicle data, such as pedal position, steering angle, etc. The board also houses safety circuitry for the car, as well as circuitry for the dashboard display, and for CAN communication, the protocal used for communication between the vehicles various systems. The board is located in the front end of the car, in an aluminum enclosure with a fan for active cooling of the power electronics.


3D render of the Body Control Module

BCM Enclosure.png

3D render of the Body Control Module Enclosure

Words to PCBWay

Support from PCBWay would be an enormus benafit to our teams progress and helping towards the team being able to compete in future competitions. Due to finacial contraints and the complexity of the entire vehcile project as a whole, having high quality, reliable PCBs would allow for the team to have the opportunity to achieve great success in the future. As this is an ongoing project, with new boards developed for future vehicle year after year, ongoing support from PCBWay would allow the team to continue to expand students experiential learning, providing great experience for the engineers of tomorrow.

For more team information, please visit http://www.macformulaelectric.com/ and check out the teams Instagram: @macformulaelectric

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