Former ECC Club members, Ben and Karthik, featured in The Reporter

Methacton grads return to showcase factory Malibu they helped to convert to hybrid

As the automotive industry dramatically steps up its gasoline-electric hybrid efforts, the field will be wide open for engineering grads like Benjamin Sattler and Karthik Pillutla who are profoundly in tune with the technology.

The Methacton High School alumni and Penn State engineering students returned to their Worcester alma mater Thursday to hopefully trigger the same fervor in kids that they felt as members of the school’s Electric Car Club and teacher Steve Savitz’s environmental science class just a few years ago…

In what could be regarded as the ultimate show-and-tell, the men will be showcasing the 2013 Chevy Malibu that they helped convert to a hybridized version of the stock product.

Currently Sattler and Pillutla are transforming a 2016 Chevrolet Camaro into a hybrid electric beauty for EcoCAR 3, a four-year competition organized by Argonne National Labs and sponsored by General Motors and the Department of Energy.

“Obviously we’ll be talking about the car, but it’s really about getting the kids excited about these fields,” said Sattler, who was also joined by Pillutla for a visit to Arcola Middle School this week.

“The middle school was a little more about the STEM program and the science and technology opportunities that are available at both the high school level and college level. For the environmental class at Methacton it’s more about why the automotive industry is transitioning to hybrid vehicles and some of the challenges it faces.”

– Gary Puleo, The Reporter

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