Engineering teams claim top awards at OEC

Monday, January 27, 2020

Waterloo Engineering undergraduate teams won four major awards in this year’s Ontario Engineering Competition (OEC) in the Innovative Design, Programming and Re-engineering categories.

Hosted by the University of Guelph from January 17 to 19, OEC brought together engineering students from across the province to compete in eight unique challenges designed around the theme of Improve Life.

Waterloo Engineering teams won first and second place in the Innovative Design category. 

Fourth-year nanotechnology engineering students Han Liu, Daniel Stranart and Luke Wiersma took top honours for their project, SMRT (an acronym for Simple Method for Recognizing Trauma) Coat, which is also the team’s Capstone Design project.

Han Liu, Daniel Stranart and Luke Wiersma

“We are developing an affordable, versatile coating that, upon impact, will visibly change colour,” says  Wiersma. “We are designing this around being a spray-on helmet coating to help detect concussions immediately after impact, as about 50 per cent of all concussions go either undetected or worse, unreported.”

OEC's Innovation Design first-place winners are from left Luke Wiersma, Han Liu and Daniel Stranart.

Second place in the category went to fourth-year systems design engineering students Christopher Carnduff, Kaitlyn Douglas Diederichs, Thomas Doucette and Roberto Sanchez Enkerlin

Christopher Carnduff, Kaitlyn Douglas Diederichs, Thomas Doucette and Roberto Sanchez Enkerlin
for their project called Canairy, a wearable air quality sensor to monitor the air pollution in a firefighter's immediate environment.

“It’s designed to give them real-time alerts and log a history of their exposure,” says Diederichs.

Team Canairy members are from left Roberto Sanchez Enkerlin, Thomas Doucette, Kaitlyn Douglas Diederichs and Christopher Carnduff.

First place in the Programming challenge was awarded to Waterloo software engineering students Jasper Chapman-Black, Céline O'Neil and Sean Purcell.

Waterloo software engineering students Jasper Chapman-Black and Sean Purcell.

The team developed a system to control an hour-by-hour simulation of power generation in Ontario.

“We combined a control system and a linear programming solver to pick the optimal combination of power sources to use, minimizing cost and CO2 emissions," says Purcell.  

First place in the Programming category was awarded to Sean Purcell, left, Jasper Chapman-Black and Céline O'Neil, not pictured. 

Nicholas Gisone, a first-year mechanical engineering student, and Abdulrahman Hussien, a first-year chemical engineering student, placed third in the Re-Engineering category.

In the second of two category challenges, Gisone and Hussien recommended changes to a provided blueprint of a mall to accommodate seniors and proposed several structural changes such as the addition of elevators and partitioning of commercial spaces to create bedrooms for seniors. They also developed a cost analysis of the project.

The first and second place teams move on to this year’s Canadian Engineering Competition to be hosted by the University of Manitoba from March 6 to 9.