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The University of Texas began participating in Advanced Vehicle Technology Competitions in 1990 during the Natural Gas Vehicle Challenge. Earning third place in the final year of the competition, the team continued to get involved and is now one of 15 teams across North America competing in the EcoCAR EV Challenge.

Throughout EcoCAR EV Challenge competition, the team aims to bring together a diverse group of innovative and talented individuals to develop and optimize the 2023 Cadillac LYRIQ to utilize automation and vehicle-to-everything (V2X) connectivity as well as implement energy efficient and customer-pleasing features while meeting the decarbonization need of the automotive industry.


The UT Austin EcoCAR team aims to use cutting-edge technologies to create impactful solutions for novel mobility systems and to foster a welcoming environment for its students to work effectively in a multidisciplinary and diverse team.

The team expects students in the group to develop personal and career skills and contribute to a better future for our society.


  • Systematically test sensors on the Cadillac LYRIQ while developing motor controllers and mechanical modifications for a dual motor conversion. Additionally, the team will also begin algorithmic development on the sensor fusion algorithms with the goal of having a working object detection prototype in simulation by the end of year 2.
  • Implement DEI initiatives through education and advocacy by working with underrepresented and underserved groups in a community-wide format.
  • Growing from Year 1, the team aims continue informing and impacting team members to be ambassadors for a more diverse, equitable and inclusive workplace.
  • Enhance visibility of the UT Austin EcoCAR team on campus as an organization that brings together the brightest minds in various fields. The team aims to continue working towards becoming a think tank for innovative solutions to engineering and inclusivity in the automotive industry.

Team Members

Dr. Junmin Wang

Lead Faculty & Connected and Automated Vehicle Systems Advisor

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Dr. Junmin Wang is a professor in the Walker Department of Mechanical Engineering at The University of Texas at Austin and holds the Lee Norris & Linda Steen Norris Endowed Professorship.

His research contributions include the development of control and estimation methods that advance efficiency, cleanliness and driving safety of conventional, electrified, connected and automated vehicles. Prof. Wang has supervised 18 Ph.D. students and 2 post-doc researchers to completion, with 12 of them being faculty members at various universities and 8 of them as researchers in industry and government.

Dr. Wang is the author or co-author of more than 380 peer-reviewed publications including 193 journal articles and 13 U.S. / European patents. He received seven best paper awards from IEEE, ASME, and SAE.

Prof. Joydeep Biswas

Faculty Advisor

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Prof. Joydeep Biswas is an assistant professor in the Department of Computer Science at The University of Texas at Austin.

His research interests are in perception and planning for long-term autonomous mobile robots. His contributions include the development of long-term localization and mapping algorithms, algorithms for robots to self-estimate perception competency, learning-based navigation algorithms and symbolic program synthesis and repair for end-user customizability of robots.

Prof. Biswas’ research is funded by grants from the National, Science Foundation, Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, Army Research Laboratories and several industrial sponsors. Prof. Biswas was awarded the NSF CAREER award in 2021, an Amazon Research Award in 2018, and the JP Morgan AI Faculty Research Award in 2018.

Dr. Alex Huang

Faculty Advisor

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Dr. Alex Huang is the Dula D. Cockrell Centennial Chair in Engineering at the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at UT Austin.

He is a world-renowned expert of power semiconductor devices, power electronics, smart grid and renewable energy system. He has published more than 550 papers in journals and conferences and is the inventor of more than 20 US patents, including several patents on the Emitter Turn Off Thyristor technology that received a prestigious R&D 100 award in 2003.

Dr. Huang is also widely credited for his contribution in developing the Energy Internet concept and the Solid State Transformer based Energy Router technology.

His work on the SST has been named by MIT Technology Review as one of the world’s 10 most important emerging technologies in 2011.

Yung-Chi Kung

Connected & Automated Vehicle Systems Lead

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Yung-Chi Kung is a PhD student in mechanical engineering with a bachelor’s in mechanical engineering, a minor in business and a computational science and engineering certificate.

He particularly enjoys mechanical engineering because it allows him to be involved with his creations at every step of the way, from the software to the hardware to integration and assembly. One of his favorite hobbies is indoor horticulture because it serves as a juxtaposition from the code and machinery he is usually working with and allows him to touch grass without leaving the comfort of his home.

Rishab Anand

Propulsion, Controls & Modeling Lead

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Rishab is currently a PhD student in the ECE department and serves as the PCM Lead.

He spent over two years with an Indian automotive OEM, working on mass market electric vehicles. He obtained his masters' degree in power electronics and power systems from IIT Bombay, India in 2019 and an undergraduate degree in electrical engineering, with honors, from IIT Gandhinagar, India in 2017.

Arthur Zhang

Perception Autonomy Lead

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Arthur is currently pursuing a PhD in Computer Science. He is broadly interested in self/unsupervised feature learning for robotic perception. When asked how he envisions the future, he said, “All I want is a robot butler to do my chores, but for now my DJ Roomba will have to do”.

Sherwin Shan

Communications Manager

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Sherwin is a fourth-year public relations major at the Moody College of Communication.

His passion in integrated brand communications is rooted in his love for connecting groups through shared experiences, specifically cultural or socio-economic experiences. Applying his theoretical and practical knowledge in public relations, advertising and marketing allows him to thrive in his passion for sustainable and advocacy PR with clients such as the BMW Group, Unilever and EcoCAR.

His favorite quote is “self-praise is no praise”. During his free time, Sherwin can be found with earphones on curating specific playlists and discovering new music to share with his peers.

Jimena Casas

Equity in Mobility Lead

Jimena is a second-year honors electrical and computer engineering student working as the Equity in Mobility lead.

Jimena is a graduate of the Google Computer Science Summer Institute and the Apple Engineering Technology Camp. Her leadership positions extend outside of EcoCAR, where she is the outreach manager for UT SHPE and a mentor for UT’s First Gen Longhorns mentorship program.

Jimena strongly believes that creating a diverse and welcoming community is crucial for the productivity of a team.

Umesh Malepati

Systems, Design and Integration Lead

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Umesh is a graduate student at the Walker Department of Mechanical Engineering. He currently focuses on researching autonomous mobile robotics.

In his free time, Umesh enjoys taking in nature and his surroundings. Hiking and exploring Austin keeps him motivated and energized throughout the week.

Andrew Young

Project Manager

Andrew is a master's student of mechanical engineering with a focus on dynamic systems and control. Before this, he spent over four years with Caterpillar, working on the design and simulation of digging components. 

Andrew’s ultimate goal is to unite disciplines to develop more intuitive and connected products. His favorite quote is “the only true wisdom is to know that you know nothing”

GET InvolveD

If you would like to be a part of the UT Austin EcoCAR team and make history, contact us at You can also visit our website at

Openings in our team can be found on our “Join Us” page:

K-12 Educators can request garage visits for classrooms by emailing us.

Contact Information


301 E. Dean Keeton St. Austin, Texas 78705

Email or