COVID-19 Update - 08 September 2020

London South Bank University

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LSBU supports student applications to The Mayor's Entrepreneurs Competition (TMEC). TMEC is a prestigious competition to demonstrate a combination of engineering and entrepreneurial excellence. Despite numerous applications, the Engineering School had not yet had an applicant get into later stages of the competition. To rectify this an embedded programme introducing enterprise to engineers has been developed, supported by the Engineers in Business Prize Fund. The goal is to support as many quality applications as possible to go into The Mayor's Entrepreneurs Competition.

Called Design and Practice, the level 4 core module for undergraduate Engineering Students equipped engineering students with design discipline, creativity and problem-solving skills. This is the first major initiative to support students in entering external enterprise competitions. Three hundred students took part in the module, working in teams to develop an idea. The programme culminated in a Pitch Party in front of a panel of university academics and student entrepreneurs who chose our first Engineers in Business winners. Prizes were awarded to multiple students with top cash awards going to the Gold, Silver and Bronze award winners.

Twenty applications were submitted for The Mayor of London’s Entrepreneur competition - the highest number LSBU has ever submitted, with a large number of applicants coming from within the School of Engineering. Three students have reached the semi-finals - all from the School of Engineering!


Gold Award Winner: ECO Threads, Aysha Golam, BEng (Hons) Mechanical Engineering; Michaela Henry, BEng (Hons) Mechanical Engineering; Gowsica Pushpanathan, BEng (Hons) Mechanical Engineering; Yusuf Yusuf, BEng (Hons) Mechanical Engineering - £600 Engineers in Business Prize

The ECO Threads team developed eco-friendly and sustainable clothing from a new material created from constituent components of cigarette butts.

The ECO Threads team is turning discarded cigarette butts into articles of clothing in the fashion world. The clothing is eco-friendly and sustainable. Completely designed from a new material created from constituent components of cigarette butts, ECO Threads is helping to solve the issue caused by littering cigarette butts. Used cigarette butts are the most littered item in the world and cause negative consequences to the environment. By collecting discarded cigarette butts and converting the toxic acetate fibre and rayon into sustainable clothing, the team hopes to educate consumers on the dangers of cigarette butt waste, whilst creating a sustainable fashion brand.
Silver Award Winner: Photo-Filter - Giovanni Cornaglia, MEng (Hons) Mechanical Engineering; Daniel Leo, BEng (Hons) Mechanical Engineering; Ivailo Nedelchev, BEng (Hons) Mechanical Engineering; Karthikeyan Theivendrarasa, BEng (Hons) Mechanical Engineering - £400 Engineers in Business Prize

The Photo-Filter team created a device to retro-fit onto vehicles, that purifies air and produces clean energy.

In big cities, like London, there are thousands of determinants of air pollution which have been overlooked in the past. This pollution is toxic to the human body and, unfortunately, it is reaching levels at which it can cause both short-term and long-term serious health issues. Photo-Filter is a device to retrofit onto vehicles (buses initially), that purifies air and produces clean energy. The air filter will use the movement of the bus to create clean air, without the need of any form of energy, while the unused space of the roof will be fixed with PV panels. By placing these on the bus our structure will also produce renewable energy which can be stored for later use, providing London with a substantial source of clean energy.
Bronze Award Winner: Smart Socket - Chris Balshaw, BEng (Hons) Electrical and Electronic Engineering (Apprenticeship); Trevor Mark Jenkins, BEng (Hons) Electrical and Electronic Engineering (Apprenticeship); Peter Brimble, BEng (Hons) Mechanical Engineering, John Little, BEng (Hons) Mechanical Engineering - £400 Engineers in Business Prize

The Bronze award winners developed a smart socket that avoids strain on the national grid and reduces wear on appliances.

The way the power network system is managed is inefficient. Typical grid usage spikes between 6am and 9am, and 5pm and 6pm, with a swing of c.20GW between the daily low and high. This means lots of extra power generating equipment than normally required, to meet these peak demands. To help solve this, the team developed a smart socket that avoids strain on the national grid and reduces wear on appliances. By communicating with the National Grid and controlling when the equipment plugged into it is on or off, the aim is to prevent high energy devices such as kettles, washing machines, dishwashers etc being used at peak hours where unnecessary to split the load on the grid over a longer period of time.

Positive Feedback

This has been the most collaborative project that I have ever been involved in. Working with the support from LSBU’s Enterprise team and Engineers in Business (EIB) has really helped to motivate and inspire our talented and diverse students. Our engineering programmes at LSBU understand the importance of incorporating real-world challenges and entrepreneurship skillsets into our curriculum. The funding provided by EIB really helped us to spark a real passion for entrepreneurship in our students and nurture problem identification skills at an early stage in their career.

I am beaming with pride at how well our students developed and pitched their ideas; they demonstrated creativity, innovation and professionalism throughout. Student feedback has been overwhelmingly positive, and that is just one of the many measures of this entire approach being successful. Looking to the long-term it would be logical to explore how this year’s students can mentor and advise our incoming students so that we build a community of support for like-minded students that want to improve the world.

Alessio Corso, Senior Lecturer, Head of Division: Mechanical Engineering and Design
London South Bank University