Degree Name

BS in Mechanical Engineering


Mechanical Engineering Department


James Tobias


This report describes the final design and analysis of a hydraulic chassis dynamometer as a testing tool for California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo Supermileage Vehicle Team (CPSMV). Literature review was conducted to understand the various types of chassis dynamometers on the market as of the year 2011. After rigorous research, it was determined that a hydraulic system was the best system for a chassis dynamometer in terms of functionality, performance, and cost. Critical study of hydraulics, dynamometers, and data acquisition systems (DAQ) was followed by a complete design of a hydraulic system. The chassis dynamometer proposed in this report tests a vehicle under a load provided by a hydraulic pump. A proportional valve imparts a load on the vehicle by restricting flow and creating a pressure differential. A fluid conditioning loop comprising a strainer is incorporated into the return line to maintain proper fluid cleanliness. This project combined different principles of mechanical, manufacturing, control, and electric and computer engineering to provide a testing tool to aid in the tuning of CPSMV’s current and future vehicles.