All 2 entries tagged Maglev
May 03, 2010
Writing about web page http://www.theiet.org/local/uk/westmids/birmingham/u-c.cfm
On the 28th April (the day after our project deadline) I went to Birmingham to an IET event to give an oral presentation of my project to a panel of industry judges. this was an interesting event as I really got an insight into what other young Engineers were doing from different universities. Matthew Broxham came with me as he worked on the electrical part of the maglev, and we presented it together. The audience seemed to enjoy it and were impressed, however in many ways we were bringing a knife to a gunfight, because the competition was fierce and at an industry level. The winners were two guys who had saved corus £0.5million with steel cobbling.
Even so, the judges had a lot of positive things to say about our presentation:
Adam Lord and Matthew Broxham - Maglev
Adam and Matthew started well with a good video as a scene setter and showed very good technical knowledge throughout the presentation, particularly when answering questions. It would have been beneficial to see some thoughts on industrial applications and improvements that could have been made. A two-man presentation is often difficult and the hand-overs would have benefitted from more practice; both presenters did well, however it would have helped to have the quieter Matthew by the microphones.
Audience interest was well maintained throughout and there was some good use of humour (although occasionally at the expense of speaking over each other). A stronger conclusion would perhaps have finished the presentation off better than sliding into the question session.
Adam and Matthew scored solidly in most areas, but failed to gain key marks in the relevance to industry (although they may not have been told that this was one of the judge's criterion, consideration of the audience should have made this clear).
If you want to see the video that we played to them at the start, go here: www.tiny.cc/maglev3
April 08, 2010
Writing about web page http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GjTLvEWxiyU
This has been an interesting year so far where the pace of life inside and outside of study has really picked up. Almost every week so far we've been pushed with deadlines for assignments that I would have hardly understood at the start of the year! But I'm glad to have my abilities stretched. This is particularly true for my third year project, which is now nearing completion. Matthew Broxham and I have taken on the challenge of designing and manufacturing a maglev system entirely from scratch. See the youtube link (related web page) for the finished result! On top of that, I've been taking extra-curricular activities a lot more seriously. I've become president of Jailbreak society and have started taking my sports a lot more seriously (dodgeball and lacrosse).
Now the pressures are coming at me from two separate angles. Firstly, and most importantly, exams are coming up in about 6.5 weeks. As soon as I finish this project report and 2 remaining assignments it's straight onto the revision and non-stop until 2nd June! Secondly, there's the challenge of getting myself some Engineering based work experience this summer. I have applied, literally, to every vacancy that I have been interested or even vaguely interested in for a summer placement. And I've been putting passion and time into each application. I'm not sure whether other people are in the same situation as me, but it seems almost impossible to successfully get an internship unless you have some sort of family/friend contact within an organisation. I have yet to receive a job offer, but I have had 2 telephone interviews (Exxonmobil, npower), one face-to-face technical interview (BP), one assessment centre (National Grid) and about 30 rejections at earlier stages in the recruitment process. The field I am REALLY interested in is the future development of energy, to make it sustainable, and its applications. So far at university I have found plenty of opportunities to learn about this through my course, (which I have taken and will continue to take!) but beyond university there seem to be far fewer opportunities. I know there are many jobs out there, and that it is an expanding job market... but for people like me who are keen to get stuck in and work all summer to get some hands on experience... I can't seem to find a way in! Anyway, that's what is frustrating me at the moment. I've been trying for that over the past two terms and now it's time to focus on the first pressure, and ignore the second. There are always other things to do over summer and / or other ways to make money! My backup plan is to go and play classical guitar in classy restaurants... if I do that enough I'm bound to eventually climb out of my student overdraft, which is approaching -£2500!