Ingenuity unlimited at Design Day 2018

Posted on Friday, April 6, 2018

Six men smiling and holding a curved search and rescue sled.

The winning team from Design Day 2018. (From left) Riley Carter, Vincent Côté-Larouche, Iain Baxter, of Sauvetage Bénévole Outaouais / Ottawa Volunteer Search and Rescue, Camille Kobi, Ozan Oner and Zachary Guindon. Photo: Mike Foster.

By Mike Foster

Visions of the future, in the form of robots that clean up our planet, transportable homes for Indigenous communities and hydroponic grow walls, were brought to life by more than 500 uOttawa engineering students at Design Day 2018.

More than 100 projects were on display at the third edition of the competition, which involves students designing solutions to real-world problems put forward by real clients.

The overall first prize for Design Day 2018 and the accessible designs challenge winners were a team of first-year engineering students —  Riley Carter, Camille Kosi, Ozan Oner, Vincent Côté-Larouche and Zachary Guindon. The team designed a lightweight handle that can easily hook into search-and-rescue SKED sleds. The client for the accessible designs challenge was Sauvetage Bénévole Outaouais / Ottawa Volunteer Search and Rescue.

“In winter, it can be difficult for ambulance and search and rescue teams to get their heavy gloves through the loops of rescue sleds,” Oner said. “This design is meant to reduce the time it takes to get patients to the hospital.”

Kosi explained that the handle is made from aluminum, with a 3D-printed grip. Each SKED handle can take up to 500 pounds in weight. Working within a $100 budget, the team produced eight L-shaped handles.

Guindon said he was amazed at the feedback he received at Design Day, to the point where the team visited the licensing bureau at the Faculty of Engineering to begin commercializing their invention.

Second prize overall went to Robot Mobility System, a team consisting of Yazan Abbas, Jean Azzi, Liam Vannest, Elzar Nayup and Daniel Oluwayoni. The team designed modifications for a Robot Missions robot that collects beach debris and can be 3D printed. The Robot Mobility System team also won in the environmental robots category, in which 19 teams designed items like seed spreaders, water samplers and better brakes.

University of Ottawa Design Day is part of the work of Professor Hanan Anis, NSERC Chair in Entrepreneurial Engineering Design (CEED). It provides engineering students the opportunity to present their projects to judges from the industry and the community, as well as to their peers and professors.

A woman speaking to three students in front of a long table that holds square pots.

One of the 15 student teams who took on the Hydroponics Grow Wall challenge at Design Day 2018. Photo: Bonnie Findley.

A view from above of around 20 students looking at a covered vehicle with portholes as well as two cars in the SITE lobby.

Students look at a few of the projects on display in the SITE building during Design Day March 29. Photo: Bonnie Findley.


Here’s a list of winners in other categories:

The transportable houses category was commissioned by Paula Hall, who is from a Mi’kmaq First Nation, and Monique Manatch, an Algonquin knowledge keeper and founding member of Indigenous Culture Media Innovations. Twelve teams created houses that are easy to transport and assemble, use natural energy such as solar power for heating and include systems to ensure good water quality.

Winner: Automation 1: Komal Javed, Nicholas Morin, Asaad Abbas, Adam Duchesne, Godwin Jeyanesan, Ben Heyden, Andrew Bezaire.

The hydroponic grow walls category was commissioned by the Parkdale Food Centre, which encourages healthy neighbourhoods and aims to test hydroponic towers and walls for schools and community centres.

Winner: Dope Hydroponic System: Daniel Christopher, Ken Lorbetskie, Pranesh Choohun, Medhanit Mamo, Kailash Ranganathan.

Designing pedestrian blockers for the Ottawa Police Service: Students were challenged to design out the danger of pedestrians dashing across traffic to concrete road medians by finding alternative uses for the medians, such as electricity generation, water storage or advertising. Police say many accidents result from pedestrians jaywalking and stopping midway on road medians.

Winner: Bloqueur Thématique de piéton : Thomas Fortin-Délisle, Alexandre Deguire, Mahmoud Lafdaoui, Flarens Mervil, Omar Tijari, Rokia Harti.

A futuristic and interactive art installation for the new STEM Complex: The goal was to build an interactive art installation for the $115-million STEM Complex.

Winner: STEM Living Wall: Devansh Shah and Sarmad Nomadi.

Open category:

Winner: uOttawa Rocketry: Nikhil Peri, Manit Ginoya, Andrew Zavatorny, Paul Buzuloui, Usama Taiq

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