Axalta and the School of Automotive Studies of Shanghai Tongji University recently announced another three-year cooperation agreement. The agreement was formalized at the Second Axalta Innovation Symposium held at the Company’s Asia Pacific Technology Center (APTC) in Shanghai, China.
Under the extended agreement, Axalta will continue supporting three student car racing teams from Tongji University, namely the TJU F1 Racing team, Dian Electric Car Racing team, and Zeal Eco-power Team starting from 2020. Student racing teams will have access to Axalta’s Spies-Hecker® waterborne refinish coatings, and services, as well as training. The students will also have opportunities to observe and experience professional car painting first hand at the APTC, and join educational seminars that will demonstrate advanced color and coating technologies and teach the advantages of using sustainable waterborne coating.
This collaboration aligns with Axalta’s focus on expanding Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) education globally through its Axalta Bright Futures Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) foundation. Spies Hecker®, which is used on Tongji University’s student racing cars, is one of the leading waterborne paint brands used by the Mercedes-AMG F1 team. As official team supplier to Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport, Axalta has delivered the technically-advanced paint, via its premium Spies Hecker brand, on the previous championship-winning Silver Arrows as well as on this year’s car, the Mercedes-AMG F1 W10 EQ Power+.
“We were delighted to continue our cooperation with Shanghai Tongji University,” said Willie Wu, President of Axalta Greater China. “The past three years have seen the Tongji University student car racing teams grow, shine, and win at the racetrack. We are pleased to be part of their STEM educational journey and assist them in achieving these meaningful victories.”
“This cooperation demonstrates the value of the technology, engineering, and innovation that goes into Axalta products,” continued Wu. “It provides inspiration to students considering a career in the auto or chemical industries and develops a pipeline of new talent that could be the future leaders of the industry.”
Li Hong, Deputy Secretary of the School of Automotive Studies at Shanghai Tongji University, said, “We are pleased to build on our partnership with Axalta. This program helps to stimulate our students’ interests in STEM, enables them to learn more about the technologies that go into the world’s advanced coatings and colors, and advocates for eco-responsible practices. Cultivating innovation and environmental awareness among students is of great benefit to future economic and social development of China.”
Having partnered with Tongji University for three years now, Axalta has witnessed the remarkable achievements of the university’s three student car racing teams, who not only assembled their own vehicles but broke international records driving them. In 2017, the TJU F1 Racing team achieved the fastest results in the linear acceleration event of Formula Student Germany. Both the TJU F1 Racing team and Dian Electric Car Racing team broke several records set by the Chinese team at Formula Student Japan. The Zeal Eco-power Team won the Asian runner-up title of the ICE prototype car group at Shell Eco-marathon Asia 2019.
About Axalta STEM in China: Axalta STEM Education is an integrated and applied educational program focused on Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. In alignment with China’s Sustainable Education Program, Axalta continues to create awareness and educate local academic communities on STEM and industry trends related to coatings. Axalta believes that education in the sciences is critical, especially given the technologies that drive its innovation and manufacturing platforms. Through university collaborations, Axalta encourages young people in China to consider careers in industrial fields and provides them with practical opportunities to expand their exposure to the ways in which STEM disciplines touch their lives daily.