Cian Dalton from Claregalway took home the top prize at the annual GMIT Mechanical and Industrial Student Expo for his river cleaning robot.
Cian’s project, “The Design and Development of a Waste Removal Robot for Marine Waters and Rivers.”, won him Engineers Ireland West Project Award at the expo which took place at the end of April.
“Research has shown that only 8% of Irish beaches and harbour rivers are deemed to be clean, and Irish fishermen have hauled over 190 tonnes of litter in the last 3 years,” Cian explained.
“For my project I designed a novel robot to remove litter from water. The prototype is fully operational and Bluetooth compatible”, he added.
His winning project has also gained him direct entry into the Engineers Ireland – Innovative Student of the Year competition.
Cian’s project was one of 85 projects presented in poster format and virtually exhibited from Wednesday, 28 April to Friday 30 April to a team of external judges.
There were three other students from Galway who made the short list of runners up: Shauna Keaveney from Dunmore, Brendan Coughlan of Clonfert, and Alan Ciweck from Athenry.
Shauna Keaveney was the winner in the Biomedical Engineering category for her “Design of a Lumbar Implant based on the Gyroid Model using Additive Manufacturing” which could aid in the management of lower back pain.
Brendan Coughlan won the Mechanical Engineering Product Design specialisation category for his project “The Design and Development of a Battery Testing and Separation System”.
And Alan Ciweck won the Mechanical Engineering Biomedical specialisation category for his project, “Investigation into the viability of manufacturing a cast using 3D Printing Technology”.
Dr Orla Flynn, President of GMIT, said “GMIT is one of the largest providers of STEM education in the State, and it was very heartening for me to see the range, relevance and quality of the projects being showcased in this exhibition.
“I was particularly pleased to see the strong engagement with industry and I want to thank all involved: industry sponsors and judges, academic and technical staff, exhibition organisers and especially our student participants.”