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Speak Out for Engineering picks up speed

World Bulletin Team

SOfE Americas finalists (left to right) - Roman Stromeyer, Shalini Persad, Shivan Ramnarace
SOfE Americas finalists (left to right) - Roman Stromeyer, Shalini Persad, Shivan Ramnarace

We caught up with the regional finals in the Americas and Europe and also found out how the Pakistan student chapter heats are progressing.

Speak out for Engineering is the event which challenges young members worldwide to develop verbal and visual communication skills in explaining technical mechanical engineering-related subject.

The Americas

The competition, was held in the southern Trinidad city of San Fernando on 18 November 2017. 

Organised and hosted by Pan-Caribbean Group (PCG) member Sean Ocho, the event relied on the expertise and input from three highly experienced judges Jainarine Bansee, Jason Micoo, and Sylvester Phagoo.

Two of the presenters were finalists from the PCG SOfE heat held in June 2017, with the third competitor representing the IMechE Texas Group, winner of the Houston SOfE heat held in October 2017.

The presentations were:

  • Shivan Ramnarace (Pan-Caribbean Group)  - "Artificial hands using shape memory alloy"
  • Roman Stromeyer (Texas Group) - "Modeling wingtip vortices with CFD"
  • Shalini Persad (Pan-Caribbean Group) - "Energy auditing".

First, Shivan Ramnarace gave a fascinating talk on his work designing and prototyping an innovative prosthetic/robotic hand using shape memory alloys. Second, Roman Stromeyer presented his work using CFD to model the vortices shed by airplane wingtips, and the challenges of accurately meshing and simulating a complex flow problem. Third, Shalini Persad hosted an enlightening discussion on auditing the energy usage of large commercial buildings, and possible approaches on decreasing usage for long term cost savings and heightened environmental responsibility. All of the presentations were very well prepared and eloquently delivered.

As the attendees enjoyed dinner and conversation, the judges compared notes ultimately declaring the visiting Texan, Roman Stromeyer the winner of the 2017 Americas Region Speak Out for Engineering competition, with Shivan awarded 2nd place and Shalini third. Roman will continue on to the International SOfE Final in February 2018.

The event concluded with a round of thanks to the many PCG committee members, students, and volunteers in attendance, as well as an encouraging and thankful speech from organiser and host Sean Ocho.

Special thanks to Jainarine Bansee, Quin Bess, Chris Maharaj, Jason Micoo, Sean Ocho, Shalini Persad, Sylvester Phagoo, Shivan Ramnarace, and Roman Stromeyer for making the event a complete success.

European Final in Seville

On the 17 November 2017, the Institution's Europe region conducted their Speak Out for Engineering (SOFE) regional final at the Cristina Heeren Foundation in Seville, Spain.

The event, hosted by the Iberia branch, was organised by the IMechE Volunteer of the Year, Jose Garteiz and his committee.

The SOFE Europe regional finalists, the winners of individual country finals in Europe were:

  • Mr Adam Lord (Germany)  - “I love wind power- Brazil"
  • Mr. Ameen Allan (Palestine) - “Automatic Tray Seeding Machine"
  • Mr Juan Fernandez (Spain) - “Exoskeleton Technology"
  • Mr Donald Dali (Malta) - “Hips don’t lie, Simulating their honesty".

The judging panel, Mr Raymond Hodgkinson (Europe Chair), Kathryn Bjärkvik (Europe Young Member Representative) and Jo Horton (Head of International Development), assessed each participant’s ability to communicate subjects of mechanical engineering effectively.

The first prize was awarded to Mr. Donald Dali for his talk titled “Hips don’t lie, Simulating their honesty.” He received a certificate and £300 cash prize.

Second prize was awarded to Mr. Adam Lord for his talk titled “I love wind power- Brazil”. He received a certificate and £200 cash prize.

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European finalists receive their certificates

Kathryn Bjärkvik, Europe Young Member representative commented:

“This is the first time Europe has hosted such an event. We were all so impressed with the standard of the participants, in both content and presentation style. SOfE is a great way to spread different ideas in engineering, develop presentation skills and bring engineers from around the Europe region together."

The audience included institution members from of varying industry backgrounds and experiences around Europe. The competition was followed by a theatrical flamenco performance and the opportunity to network.

Pakistan Speaks Out - SOfE NUST 2017

This year’s Speak Out for Engineering was held on 14 November at the School of Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering (SMME). The event, one of the signature events of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers NUST Student Chapter (IMechE NSC), fully lived up to the expectations both in terms of enthusiasm of the participants and the scope of the engineering knowledge presented. The event encapsulated a wide variety of engineering and scientific projects ranging from novel cookware appliances to intricate nano technology endeavours.

The participants were to demonstrate an engineering project that they either had worked on or were currently working on. The presentation was to last a maximum of 15 minutes, after which the presenter would be asked questions by the judges.

The event's judging panel, DTM Aniqa Anwar, Barrister Safi Ghauri and Ahmed Sajjad Zaidi, all had great experience in judging such events including SOfE.

A total of 15 highly skilled presenters participated, 12 of them IMechE members, including:

Ahmed Alam Ansari from SMME gave a presentation on “Tank Lorry Computational Stress Analysis” in which he demonstrated how FEM Analysis of Shell Pakistan Ltd. 12-wheeler tank lorry was performed on Abaqus. The goal of this was to analyse loading conditions and their consequence on the stress levels and safety of the lorry chassis.

Muhammad Usama presented his novel project of designing new cookware appliances utilizing a juxtaposition of fundamental heat transfer theories and advanced fluid mechanics. He claimed the efficiency of these appliances to be up to 35%.

Kamran Siddique presented his ongoing final year project on “Vacuum membrane distillation”.

Rafey Mehmood Alam articulately demonstrated his research and work on design and development of Pile cage welding machine.

Ishaq Ibrahim aptly explained the intricate technicalities of a heart stent testing device for detection of stent migration.

Waleed Bin Khalid awed the audience and judges with his impressive elucidation of his project on a “Scissor Dip Coating Machine” for automation of dip coating process for Pakistan's surgical industry.

Jawad Ahmed reverted the attention of the audience towards the pressing issue of energy conservation and efficiency through his presentation on design of horizontal axis wind turbines for harnessing energy from low speed winds.

The last contestant was Osama Dar from the NUST Institute of Civil Engineering (NICE) who explained his research undertaken to design filters coated with nanoparticles to prevent the choking of dam filters due to fine particle migration.

After the conclusion of the presentations and the question and answer sessions, the judges made their decision. Before announcing the final results, all the participants received certificates of participation from the judges. The judges were then themselves awarded certificates by the student chair of IMechE, Syed Mobeen Hussein.

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Heat winner Waleed Bin Khalid receives his certificate

The final results were:

  • 1st - Waleed Bin Khalid
  • 2nd - Kamran Saddique
  • 3rd - Rafey Mehmood Alam.

It was also announced that the top five students would go on to participate in SOfE North.

Barrister Safi Ghauri spoke on behalf of the judges and gave some wonderful advice and inspiration. He spoke about the art of presentation and its importance in professional life. He also gave some invaluable presentation tips. He encouraged the participants to continue improving their presentation skills, commenting how close the competition had been at this event.

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