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The IDEA Challenge 2021

The IDEA (International Design Engineering Annual) Challenge just completed its first iteration! Inspired by current events, this year’s participants competed to develop a novel vaccine transport system to aid in the distribution of vaccines across rural Colombia. Fourteen participants from across four institutions participated. Over the course of four days, the groups worked hard to prototype and develop their respective ideas.

During the challenge participants provided regular updates on their development. To keep the pressure on and maintain motivation, the participants were provided with daily scores to gauge their progress against the other teams. The challenge culminated in an exciting set of experiments: the participants had to demonstrate that their final concept could satisfy the requirement specifications. These requirements included surviving a drop test and a refrigeration test. The winner of this year’s challenge was Troll Labs from NTNU who scored over 700 points! The final scores were calculated based on the concept’s ability to meet the requirements specifications as well as their use of the Pro2Booth platform. This platform was developed to track the progress of designs and provide users with a tool to understand how their concepts evolve over time.

This tied to the second objective of the IDEA Challenge: to provide a platform for research institutions to gather design research data. Gathering data for design experiments is often an arduous process. The IDEA Challenge hoped to create an environment within which a research institution could gather scientific data and run design experiments whilst fostering more interaction between doctoral researchers from all across the world, something that has been sorely lacking in the last few years due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The IDEA Challenge provided the perfect test bed to gather data on the utilization of Pro2Booth, helping to further our understanding of how designs evolve, interconnect, and inspire one another. It is the hope of the DMF lab that future iterations of the IDEA Challenge can prove as fruitful to future participants and organizers and that the challenge can evolve into a regular occurrence that promotes scientific development and cooperation between international research institutions and students.

Thanks to all participants for their enthusiasm and brilliant design work.  To see a what the team from Zagreb got up to check out their video here!

We’re excited for 2022. Get in touch for more information!

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