SIM University (UniSIM) student Mr Roy Sng came out tops at the inaugural Energy Innovation Challenge, which was organised by The Institution of Engineers, Singapore (IES), and Science Centre Singapore (SCS), as part of the three-day World Engineers' Summit-National Engineers' Day (WES-NED) 2015 event that ended on 24 July 2015.
The competition – held at the Suntec Singapore Convention and Exhibition Centre – provided students from secondary schools, junior colleges, the Institute of Technical Education, polytechnics and universities, the opportunity to work with professional engineers and business mentors to design innovative ways to use alternative energy sources.
Roy's project, entitled "A Made-in-Singapore Sustainable Urbanised Vertical Axis Wind Turbine", was one of 22 entries from Singapore and overseas universities, including the National University of Singapore (NUS), Nanyang Technological University, Singapore Institute of Technology and Singapore University of Technology and Design, selected for the final round of the competition. Supervised by Dr William Phay, Director (Innovation & Marketing) at Techcomm Global Pte Ltd, Roy developed a prototype that generates electricity from wind energy.
The teams were measured by the end product, the power of team strategy and collaboration, and the determination of the students and their supervisors. As one of the finalist teams, Roy was given just 90 seconds on stage to impress the judges with an engineering-cum-business pitch and also faced tough questions from the judges during their walkabout.
Months of hard work paid off as Roy won the first prize with an overwhelming 58% of the votes, beating runner-up teams from NUS and Malaysia's Asia Pacific University of Technology and Innovation, which garnered 21% of the votes each. Roy was presented with an NED Championship Trophy and S$8,000 prize money by Minister for Education Heng Swee Keat, who was a member of the judging panel.
UniSIM is heartened by the confidence the industry has placed in Roy and the University, having received invitations from National Research Foundation, National Environment Agency, Singapore Technologies Engineering and Thistle Clean Tech Group, as well as venture capitalists to further explore product commercialisation.
Roy, who submitted this challenge entry as part of his Capstone Project in UniSIM's Bachelor of Engineering in Aerospace Systems programme, said: "My participation in the Energy Innovation Challenge has given me invaluable hands-on experience to learn more about science and engineering, and to discover the spirit of innovation. A big thanks to my mentors and supporters from UniSIM, in particular those from the School of Science and Technology."
The UniSIM team briefing Minister Heng Swee Keat (with gold tie) on its project submission at the exhibition booth.
Minister Heng Swee Keat (centre) presenting the first prize to Mr Roy Sng. With them are (from left) Associate Professor Lim Tit Meng, Chief Executive Officer of SCS; Dr Yeoh Lean Weng, Chairman of the NED 2015 Organising Committee;
Er Chong Kee Sen, President of IES; Mr Ivan Ang, UniSIM Aerospace Systems programme student
assisting in project development; and Dr William Phay.