EBEC Challenge Preliminaries Round 1 November 2017

Last semester, we organised the first round of EBEC Challenge Preliminaries. This engineering competition gathered 48 participants who accepted to take the challenges proposed by our partners (GoogleBabelwayThe Vex and Brico). The rewards reflected the tasks, around 500€ of prices for the winners. The latter were selected by our jury which was composed by partners and university’s staff members to combine different opinions.

First of all, the participants had to complete a case study. The topic, proposed by Babelway, was “Data for Climate”. Aware of the ecological situation, the participants imagined a way to minimize greenhouse gas emissions for a specific large-scale system.

They were free to choose a supplier and consumers for their presentation and, as usual, the results were surprising! The students designed new ways of cycling, consuming foods, even a new way for TEC and SNCB to design the traffic.

Then, during the afternoon, our participants received another task by Google. They had to create a Crazy Machine. The purpose of this machine is to achieve a simple task by a chain reaction. This allowed participants to spotlight their creativity, team spirit, rigor and even humor.

We were amazed by the construction which have been built and by the originality of some solutions. Some of them used fans to move a small sailboat. Others constructed yodel to move playmobiles and were even able to use a laptop to create a transfer.

Eventually, the participants had the opportunity to improve their skills such as presenting, working as a group, leadership,

EBEC Challenge Preliminaries Round 2 November 2017

Two weeks after the first round of the EBEC challenge preliminaries, took place the second round. We also had 48 competitors who had come to win a ticket to the final local round of EBEC. This time, the challenges were obviously different as we had other partners (Automatic SystemsCiseoThe Vex and Brico). There was around 500€ of prices for the winners (1st, 2nd et 3rd ranking). The ranking was chosen by a jury composed by partners and university’s staff members to combine different opinions. The morning was devoted to the Case-Study which was proposed by Ciseo. The task was about medical device.  More precisely, the participants had to come up with innovative ideas about “how to help a nurse at home on the robotic point of view”. Even though the challenge was hard, the students have offered us interesting solutions. By example, a robot at home which tells the nurse if there is a problem, a device that can prescribe a medication, or just give it to the patient so the nurse does not have to move just for that and so on.
Then, after a break for dinner, relaxation and the demonstration of The Vex, began the second part of the competition: The Team Design, proposed by Automatic Systems. The theme was “Stop the bike “. As Automatic Systems provides barriers around the entire world, the context for this test was the 24-hour bike ride of Louvain-La-Neuve. The teams had to create a barrier able to withstand to “our bike” in action. With only a little bit of raw materials, the teams managed to build solutions that met the criteria. The  solutions were again well thought and surprised us!

That hard and intense day was completed around the traditional drink where participants and organizers could talk and exchange their experience et give us a feedback.

EBEC Challenge Local Final Round February 2018

In February of this semester, took place the final round of the local competition of EBEC Challenge. Six teams from each of the two preliminary rounds participated with hope to qualify for the final step: EBEC Benelux. This competition was possible thanks to our partners : Odoo for the Case Study part and The Belgian Railway for the Team Design. The two competitions were held in parallel in UCL’s buildings during the whole day. Brico also provided the team design with material and equipment.

The Team Design took place in the big study room of the Science building : The participants spent 6 hours designing a device able to load and unload salt on a train. It had to be composed of loading and unloading devices and a container carried by the train. The purpose of this device was to allow rapid and efficient snow removal salt delivery in case of a big snowstorm. Only very basic materials were provided, and the teams came up with very ingenious solutions. The 3 winning teams received great prices from The Belgian Rail thanks to their very ingenious solutions!

The Case study was held in the St. Barbe building : Each team had to find an innovative idea to exploit in a mini-project. The objective was to imagine market composed of at least 3 actors in which their idea might be exploited. They had to think of a way to facilitate commercial activities between the actors through mock-ups of interfaces and data-structures. Odoo provided the teams with the possibility of discovering its tools to imagine ways of using Odoo in their project. Very interesting concepts were presented by the different teams and the winners were not easy to choose!

This day of competition ended with the traditional drink in partnership with Westmalle’s Abbey who shipped us a generous sample of their products.

This is how ended the first 3 round EBEC of BEST Louvain-la-Neuve. Special thanks go to our partners: Ciseo, Babelway, Automatic Systems, Google, Odoo, The Belgian Railway, Brico and Westmalle’s Abbey. Thanks to the teachers who helped us to choose the winners. I also thank Michel Henry and Romain Antoine for the organisation of the 2 preliminary rounds along with all the members of BEST who helped the project with their determined work and presence. Finally, a big thank to all the participants who gave their time and energy to amaze us.