Due to the ongoing crisis and the concern for all involved, the competition will follow a modified format to allow for students to still compete and be judged while maintaining safety for all while still highlighting the talents and innovation of engineering students. As a result, the live portion of the annual competition, where completed vehicles are tested for endurance, maneuverability and speed over a three-day period, will not be held. Instead, Emerson experts will evaluate the technical documentation and CAD drawings the student teams have already submitted and announce winners in a limited number of categories during an online awards ceremony on May 8. In this way, rather than cancel the competition, the hard work that the students have already put into their projects can still be recognized.
The current competition began in October 2019 and participants had until the end of last year to submit their design and project documentation.
“There is no higher priority to Emerson than the safety of our customers, business partners, employees and those who we interact with during events such as this competition,” said Istvan Gödri, managing director of Emerson’s AVENTICS Hungary Kft. “With the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic concerns of the health of our communities and to our businesses, we are committed to ensuring everyone’s safety while still highlighting the great skills of these dedicated students.”
A total of 48 teams entered this year’s competition — seven more than last year. The teams come from 26 different learning institutions and nine countries, including the Czech Republic, Estonia, Poland, Latvia, Lithuania, Hungary, Romania, Slovakia and Turkey. Almost every Hungarian university will be represented, with 24 teams coming from Budapest University of Technology and Economics; University of Debrecen, Faculty of Engineering; University of Miskolc; John von Neumann University; University of Nyíregyháza; Óbuda University; University of Pannonia; University of Pannonia, Zalaegerszeg; University of Pécs and University of Szeged, Faculty of Engineering.
“We share the students’ disappointment at not being able to build their pneumobiles, and although we won’t have completed vehicles to test and judge, this competition is still quite valuable,” said Gödri. “The task of designing a vehicle for the pneumobile competition is a great way for the next generation of engineers entering the workforce to demonstrate how to apply the skills they’ve learned to real-world challenges.”
More than 1,600 engineers have participated in the event during the 12 years it has been in operation. This competition has contributed to giving students real-world experience in pneumatics engineering concepts, teamwork and project management. It further demonstrates Emerson’s long-standing commitment to STEM programs that support the future workforce, including supporting over 350 academic institutions globally.
“We see the impact that these kinds of STEM programs have in developing the abilities of new engineers,” Gödri said. “In fact, three of the eight Emerson judges, including the head of the jury, participated in the competition themselves when they were college students.”
After evaluations, the competition will recognize the best technical documentation, the most innovative vehicle and the most beautiful bodywork presented by the teams.
The student teams will be allowed to keep the Emerson components they were given and are encouraged to continue working on and refining their designs in anticipation of the next competition.
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