DeLorean car ‘goes Back to the Future’ at Queen’s University Belfast

Queen’s University is undertaking a novel project whereby a 1981 DeLorean sports car will be converted from a petrol engine to operate by electrical propulsion.

Dr David Laverty (far right) with his team

This unique project is being undertaken by the School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (EEECS) at Queen's University Belfast and is being led by Dr David Laverty.  Belfast is the home of the DeLorean Motor Company, with the original manufacturing plant located just five miles from where the car will be converted into the Car of the Future.  It is remembered for the one model it produced — the distinctive stainless steel DeLorean DMC-12 sports car featuring gull-wing doors.  The DeLorean DMC-12 shot to worldwide fame in the Back to the Future movie trilogy as the car made into a time machine by eccentric scientist Doctor Emmett L. Brown.

Exciting project for young engineers

The QUB Electric DeLorean project is sponsored and supported by Northern Ireland Electricity (NIE) as part of their engineering education activities.  Electric Vehicles present great opportunities for decarbonisation of transport, but the technologies and electrical infrastructure required to support them will require a new generation of Electrical Engineers.

Dr David Laverty from Queen’s University commented, ‘The way I see it, if you’re going to teach electric vehicles, why not do it with some style!  This is an excellent project to engage our undergraduate students, as it allows them to gain some real hands-on experience with electric vehicles, with the added bonus of working on a car as fun and iconic as the DeLorean.’

The DeLorean will be restored and converted to use an electric motor and battery pack by a team of undergraduate students from the various educational pathways offered by the School of EEECS.  Dr Laverty is aiming to have the QUB Electric DeLorean on the road by 21 October 2015…the day Marty McFly arrives in the future!