Saint-Gobain Announces the Winner of the Saint-Gobain Student Design Competition at Case Western Reserve University.
Saint-Gobain, in partnership with Case Western Reserve University, known for its academic and research excellence, hosted the finals of the Saint-Gobain Student Design Competition on April 13. Five student finalist teams presented their prototypes designed to solve a societal problem. Following the final judging by representatives from Saint-Gobain and Case Western Reserve, team PulseOx, was named the overall winner of the competition.
“This competition is an example of industry-university collaboration at its finest, and it’s exciting to see the products and technologies our students were able to develop by working together in interdisciplinary teams with mentors from Saint-Gobain,” said Jim Pae, Director of Corporate Relations at Case Western Reserve and an organizer of the competition. “The competition provides our students with an invaluable experience to engineer and design within the context of business drivers, preparing them for their next step as they enter the workforce. Through this competition, they have all applied their knowledge gained in the classroom and developed products that could potentially be put on the market.”
The winning team of Steve Aviton, Imshan Dhrolia, Ashley Djuhadi, Amanda Noonan and Thomas Thornton, pursued the development of a new device to obtain reliable blood oxygen level measurements of infants. Inspired by the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal target of ending preventable deaths of newborns and children under the age of 5 by 2030, the team’s unique and redesigned approach reduces the vulnerabilities common to existing technologies and is intended to be reusable, unlike many other low-cost technologies currently deployed in resource constrained health facilities.
Over the past several months, student teams have been tasked with designing and building a prototype device that takes an existing material and, using principles of materials science and engineering, creates a new and innovative use for it that solves a problem for society. To enter the competition, students submitted project proposals detailing the societal problem they aimed to solve as well as background research supporting the need for their prototype in the marketplace. Students were then given three months to work on their prototypes and, during midterms, presented 10-minute overviews of their projects in front of a panel of judges who provided feedback on their project direction. Based on this feedback, student teams then had an additional month to work on their projects in preparation for the final presentation.
“As the sponsor of the Saint-Gobain Student Design Competition at Case Western Reserve for the last seven years and as a major employer in the Greater Cleveland area, this competition provides Saint-Gobain with access to like-minded potential future employees with a passion for pushing the boundaries of innovation,” said Anne Hardy, Director of Saint-Gobain’s Research and Development Center in Northborough. “By providing students with practical experience developing a prototype to fill a gap in the marketplace while working in interdisciplinary teams, the competition helps to prepare young people for work at a company like Saint-Gobain that believes diversity in thought contributes to innovation.”