Ingenuity 2021 showcases useful prototype technologies

Ingenuity 2021

The Exoskeleton. Image credit: University of Adelaide.

Ingenuity 2021 will be held on 26 October between 9:30am and 3:30pm at the Adelaide Convention Centre, exhibiting the University of Adelaide’s students’ final-year projects. 

“Ingenuity is the University of Adelaide’s annual interactive expo of final-year projects by the architecture, engineering, computer and mathematical sciences students,” Faculty of Engineering, Computer and Mathematical Sciences executive dean Professor Katrina Falkner said. 

“Our students, as some of tomorrow’s leaders in their chosen fields, are already working on technology advances and solutions for our future society.” 

This year, the Ingenuity expo will showcase an exoskeleton that aids people with mobility problems, a six-legged bioinspired robot paired with a laser scanner for vision, and drones that can help clear power lines and monitor bushfires. 

The lower body assistive exoskeleton on display was developed by Jordan Curnow, Sarah Damin, Joshua Koutsouridis, Matthew Michael, Doan Nguyen, Rijul Ramkumar. 

The exoskeleton aims to help users with mobility issues by aiding with daily movements such as sitting, standing, and walking. The device which has sensors to predict the user’s individual gait, can learn and adapt to the user over time. 

Motors at the hip and knees assist according to the task being completed. The low-weight exoskeleton is made from CNC aluminium components and carbon fibre tubing and is adjustable, to ensure that the lower body is comfortably supported. 

“The range of projects on display demonstrates how our students have applied their skills and experience gained during their courses to develop practical solutions to real-world problems,” Falkner said. 

Other projects on display include: 

  • A six-legged bioinspired robot paired with a 360-degree laser scanner for vision, which is being used to help map the ecosystem and animals of Naracoorte Caves. It is programmed to map and move intelligently around caves and is small enough to fit into confined spaces and to minimise damage. 
  • A robot which clears kite strings from overhead power lines. The team has been working directly with an Indonesian power company. Kite flying is very popular there, but causes 93 per cent of power blackouts. 
  • An Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) which can carry a small sensor payload, such as a smoke detector, thermometer or microphone which could be used for low-cost bushfire monitoring with minimal risk to human operators. 

Ingenuity is attended by several thousand people each year – primary and high school students, industry representatives, university staff and students and the general public. They have the opportunity to engage with university students, share in their experiences and learn more about studying architecture, engineering, computer and mathematical sciences at the University of Adelaide. 

Further information about Ingenuity 2021 is available at www.ecms.adelaide.edu.au/ingenuity.