Science to Product Africa Initiative (S2PAfrica), a non-profit organization based in Nigeria, that is involved in developing and implementing a holistic approach to engineering education in pre-industrial African communities, is offering the grand prize award of $10,000.00 in a West African Engineering Design competition.
Participants for the competition have been drawn from 18 Nigerian, and one Ghanaian university, which had earlier submitted entries.
The Science to Product Africa (S2PAfrica) initiative, in acting on the need to take African countries out of the endless cycle in which a lack of industry creates poorly trained engineering graduates and lack of adequately trained engineers, which have been impediments to industrial development; and the seeming cynicism with which the practice of theory is usually perceived in pre-industrial societies, S2PAfrica therefore adopted a Products, Processes, Goods and Services (PPGS) philosophy, in which the creation of locally relevant PPGS practices become the core objective of engineering education in Africa. The PPGS approach takes advantage of modern ICT to deliver engineering knowledge and skills to students, by using 3D solid modelling to conceptualise, visualise, model, simulate and prototype PPGS, whereby students are taught to build systems that address local problems requiring engineering solutions. Simulated and tested computer models of physical systems are then 3D printed as prototypes that can be subjected to empirical tests, and become the basis towards mass production.
Over the last three years, S2PAfrica has been involved in a project titled “Rethinking the West African Engineering Eco System,” funded by the International Development Research Centre, IDRC of Canada and supervised by the Nigerian Academy of Engineering.
Now, in concluding the three-year project, S2PAfrica is organising a West African Engineering Design competition. 50 sets of students from the 18 Nigerian and one Ghanaian university submitted entries. Out of these 50 entries, 46 were accepted and the top 15 will be pre-judged by in-house experts.
The final judgment will take place on the 26th of February 2022 (by a Zoom event), which will be overseen by a global jury of carefully chosen local, and international experts, who have been selected mainly from among African engineers in the Diaspora, who are recognised as global leaders in their various engineering fields across reputable international organisations.
The grand prize of $10,000.00 offered by IDRC will go to the team, or individual that produces the most innovative solution to a pressing local problem, based on the application of relevant and appropriate theory to optimise material use and predict product behaviour under pre-defined use conditions.
The top ten finalists shall receive $500.00 each.
Other prizes include $2,000.00 offered by Autodesk – a global leader in design, software and engineering technology, for the team, or individual that produces a design that makes the best use of Fusion 360, a 3D Solid modelling software product of Autodesk. There is also a commitment from Cummins West Africa – the global power leader, for support of the competition.
Apart from these, there are various other category prizes and well as individually sponsored prizes.