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Prize-winning pupils from across London applauded at Primary Engineer exhibition and award ceremony hosted by Kingston University

Posted Wednesday 16 August 2023

Prize-winning pupils from across London applauded at Primary Engineer exhibition and award ceremony hosted by Kingston University The 'if you were an engineer, what would you do?" winning school pupils alongside Primary Engineer Director Chris Rochester and Kingston University staff

The annual ‘If you were an engineer, what would you do?' competition and exhibition has been held at Kingston University's Town House, seeing school pupils from across London honoured for their designs that help fix real-world problems.

The national STEM competition is for school pupils aged three to19 and is run by Primary Engineer. During this annual competition, pupils explore and learn about what engineers do, and they then design their own inventions. These ideas then inspire the engineers, who go on to grade every single submission. In the summer term, pupils are invited to celebrate their engineering achievements at the regional awards and public exhibitions which are hosted all across the UK.

The new prototypes built by Kingston University staff and students, originally selected from the previous year's entries, were revealed at the event. Kingston University is Primary Engineer's partner for London and Jersey so two prototypes were unveiled.

Head of Technical Services in the Faculty of Engineering, Computing and the Environment at Kingston University, David Utton, leads the team involved in designing the prototypes and described how they bought 'The Electric Pram' designed by Jersey winner Tyler from FCJ Primary School, to life. 

"The Electric Pram will provide a power source that is generated by the movement of the pram, but it also would have an autopilot feature," he said. "We chose this design because it solves an everyday problem for busy parents/carers and has the potential to be developed further. All the components were manufactured using Computer Aided Design and, as with any good design, we added features to ensure it could be operated safely.​"

Jayden, from Homefield Preparatory School in Sutton, designed The Electric Hybrid Plane which was the overall winner for London. Mr Utton explained why the team decided to develop this prototype.

"The prototype is a plane that runs via solar panels using renewable energy," he said. "We chose this design because it solves an everyday problem, providing solutions to an ever-growing issue of climate change and carbon emissions. We also like the way in which Jayden provided his reasoning behind the design and the advantages that came with it.​"

Mr Utton also stated how immensely proud he was of his team in making the prototypes and also thanked the students that contributed to taking these designs from concept to the finished product.

Designs from a number of pupils were displayed around Town House through the day before the awards ceremony recognised the best designs. Some of the highlights included a robot that would fight fumes and a machine that turns leaves into paper.

The overall winning design chosen by the judges this year was The Pain Chain, an electronic bike lock designed by Lila, a Year 6​ pupil from Eleanor Palmer Primary School​ in North London.

The awards were attended by Frederick Walker from the Gordon Murray Group and Felicity Chadwick-Histed, Trustee, RAF Charitable Trust as well as a host of Kingston University staff and students. Professor of Applied Physics and Instrumentation at Kingston University Andy Augousti also presented awards at the event.

UK Director of Primary Engineer, Chris Rochester, hosted the event and praised the pupil's designs as well as the work the staff and students at Kingston University put into them. "Our partnership with Kingston University has seen the exceptional designs of young people both in London and Jersey brought into reality over the past few years and the designs unveiled this year are again a testament to the brilliant team at Kingston University and the ingenious designs of the pupils; I can't wait to see the designs that they select and make this year," he said. "Providing both primary and secondary pupils with the opportunity to identify problems in the world and design creative solutions to them is an important way for young people to understand engineering around things that are important to them and to see that there is a potential future for them within it."

The technician team at Kingston University will now select the prototypes they will construct to present at next year's Primary Engineer awards ceremony.

Category: Staff

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