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RS PRO and EWB announce winners of student design competition

RS PRO and EWB announce winners of student design competition

RS PRO and Engineers Without Borders Australia (EWB) have drawn the winners of their recent student competition, awarding three winners in Australia and New Zealand. 

The three winners were commended for their socio-technical skills, sustainable design and social impact of their designs.

The first winner, Luke Nelson, studying at the Australian National University (ANU), is building a seed sorting robot which is a shaker-table-based device that aims to address the significant time and labour challenges associated with sorting native grains. The real-world application has been tested through an Indigenous-owned organisation working to develop a native grains industry for the benefit of First Nations people.

Maja Ranzinger who studies at Auckland University is currently developing a prototype design for an autonomous apple picker. The body is a thin, electrically motorised four-wheel system that fits within the orchard lanes. Ranzinger’s project aims to lower production cost whilst solving the problems of labour shortages in this industry.

Lastly, Patricia Wang-Zhao at  ANU is developing a local design summit which is a collaborative platform whereby student and professional engineers engage with local First Nations people. The summit aims to explore opportunities in engaging with Indigenous knowledge for economic and environmental benefit.

Concept for Ranzinger's Autonomous Apple Picker
Concept for Ranzinger’s Autonomous Apple Picker

RS Pro and EWB are supporting the winning submissions with product packs worth $3,000 which include RS PRO components, tools, and accessories tailored to the projects.

The competition criteria included:

  1. Socio-technical skills.
  2. Sustainable design skills, including the environmental, economic and social impacts.
  3. The demonstration of effective communication skills through the design pitch application whilst articulating teamwork skills of the project.
  4. A demonstration of how the fund will help the entrant achieve positive  social, economic, and environmental impacts.

Scott Philbrook, managing director ANZ for RS, the parent company of RS PRO, says he is looking to support future generations of engineers through programs like this.

“The last two years have been a strange and stressful year for the evolution of design and engineering in many sectors,” he said.

“We look forward to playing a small part in the development of these projects and following the positive impact that they will deliver to the community.”

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