Clarkson University SAE Diesel Snowmobile Team Wins Clean Snowmobile Challenge

February 24, 2023

For the third time in the past four years, the Clarkson SAE Diesel Snowmobile Team took top honors in the Diesel Division at the SAE Clean Snowmobile Challenge hosted by the Milwaukee Chapter of SAE. The 2023 event was held at the World Championship Derby Complex in Eagle River, Wisconsin on February 7 to 9.

Clarkson University's diesel snowmobile
Clarkson University's Diesel Snowmobile

The team of 11 students took northern Wisconsin by storm, winning the Best Design Award presented by Oshkosh Corporation. The team also placed first in Best Fuel Efficiency and In-service Emissions sponsored by Sunoco Race Fuels and Michigan Tech. The addition of a new power steering system assisted the team in winning the Polaris Best Handling Award for the first time in addition to the Bosch Overall Top Class Award.  

The Snowmobile, a 2021 Polaris Titan, is powered by a Garrett turbocharged Caterpillar C1.1L three cylinder diesel engine and equipped with a Gladstone Diesel Oxidation Catalyst (DOC) along with a Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF) to capture soot.  

The team also designed and fabricated a custom fuel delivery system to increase performance and added power steering to assist with handling the 900-pound machine.

The 11 students chosen to represent Clarkson at the CSC were Co-Team Leaders, Aeronautical and Mechanical Engineering Major Alex Rodriguez ‘23 and Mechanical Engineering Major Brandon O’Neill ‘24, as well as Aerospace Engineering Major Joe Gromlowicz ‘25, Mechanical Engineering Major Jeff Hansen ‘24, Electrical Engineer Major Mike Hewey ‘25, Mechanical Engineering Major Zach Lutzke ‘25, Mechanical Engineering Major Josh Segal ‘26, Mechanical Engineering Major Nick Marsh ‘26, Mechanical Engineering Major Dan Ball ‘24, Mechanical Engineering Major Brian Manning ‘26 and Mechanical Engineering Major Patrick McCabe ‘24.

The team will now be sunsetting the diesel sled and will next participate in the Hybrid division of the Clean Snowmobile Challenge for 2024.

The team is sponsored by NYS Snowmobile Association, Gene Haas Foundation, Snap-On Tools, Arconic, Woody’s Traction Products, Curve Industries, Klim Technical Riding Gear, Head Acoustics, 139 Designs, Camso, FlowMax DPF, Hygear Suspension, Team Industries, Polaris Inc., Biteharder Tools, SolidWorks, Capco Crane and Hoist, Caliber Products and the Clarkson University Student Association.

Clarkson University is a proven leader in technological education, research, innovation and sustainable economic development. With its main campus in Potsdam, N.Y., and additional graduate program and research facilities in the Capital Region and Hudson Valley, Clarkson faculty have a direct impact on more than 7,800 students annually through nationally recognized undergraduate and graduate STEM-designated degrees in engineering, business, science and health professions; executive education, industry-relevant credentials and K-12 STEM programs. Alumni earn salaries among the top 2% in the nation: one in five already leads in the c-suite. To learn more go to
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