Coronavirus Information: Bradley plans to resume on-campus classes in fall, summer classes will be online. More Information »

Optimum Efficiency Car Workshop

Wide spread use of the automobile in modern times has fueled great strides in human productivity. Selection of the best car for a given application requires some careful planning. This course equips you with the tools you need to select and persuade others to select the optimum efficiency car. Often we purchase sub-optimum cars because of the high initial cost for the optimum. By the end of this workshop, you will be able to convince yourself, and others, to invest in the optimum vehicle. The investment not only makes good business sense but also reduces our impact on the environment. You will receive the most from this workshop if you come with a cost quote for two or more efficiency ratings (miles per gallon) for a given size of vehicle (e.g. sub-compact, compact, midsize, full size, minivan, or SUV). You will be able to keep a spreadsheet to help you make decisions in the future.


Dr. David Zietlow, has the right mix of industrial (12 years) and academic experience (21 years) to teach engineers how to design energy systems. He has worked for a consulting engineering firm, has performed several energy audits for commercial and industrial facilities as a Senior Energy Services Representative for Central Illinois Light Company and as the former Assistant Director of the Industrial Assessment Center at Bradley University, and has worked as a design engineer in the Climate Control Division of Ford Motor Company.

During the past 21 years he has integrated this practical knowledge into all his courses to equip, even first semester thermodynamic students, with the tools they need to optimize energy systems. This combined experience, in industry and academia, has given him the perspective to help others understand energy systems, from not just at the component level, but at the system level.

   Saturday, July 18, 2020
   10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
   Virtual through Zoom
   $25 public; $10 Student
   Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Course Outline

I. Introduction

II. Distance Travelled

III. Efficiency

IV. Costs

  • Initial
  • Annual
    • Energy
    • Maintenance
  • Present worth analysis

V. Optimization

  • Objective function
  • Implementation