Tag Archives: National Academy of Engineering

From Plastic Trash to Seismically Sound Houses

national academies

Eight Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology engineering students may have figured out a way to reuse the world’s plastic waste — by using a solar oven to melt it down into bricks and 2 x 4 planks, which could go to building new housing for natural disaster victims in Haiti. According to the Terre Haute Tribune-Star, the project is part of Rose-Hulman’s summer Grand Challenges course, which strives to teach college engineering and science students to address worldwide issues identified in the National Academy of Engineering’s Grand Challenges for Engineering.

The students faced the challenge of using solar power to improve infrastructure. Their solution was a 12 foot-tall solar oven that uses solar panels to concentrate the sun’s heat into a small black box, where temperatures can reach about 300 degrees Fahrenheit, according to the article. Plastic waste is melted down in the oven and then poured into molds for bricks and planks. Buildings made out of this material could withstand 12 mph to 30 mph winds from storms.

NAE Engineering Video Contest

videographyTo commemorate its 50th anniversary, the National Academy of Engineering is currently taking submissions for its Engineering For You Video Contest. Middle, high school, undergraduate, and graduate students can enter in the competition with a 1- to 2-minute video showcasing any engineering contributions that occurred between 1974 and the present that serve human welfare and the needs of society. Students can also create a video on an engineering feat that may happen in the future, up to the year 2064.

Prizes include a $25,000 “Best Overall Video” as well as a $5,000 people’s choice award and $5,000 each for the top videos in each education category. Submissions are welcome until March 31, 2014, and winners will be notified on September 1.

Smith Students Win Pair of Ethics Video Prizes

Four Smith College students grabbed Best Video and Best in Theme prizes in a video challenge launched by the Center for Engineering, Ethics, and Society at the National Academy of Engineering.

The four — Stephanie Annessi, Monique Blake, Xinyi Liu, and Rajiha Mehdi — won with “Transnational Nuclear Waste Site Selection” within the theme, Directions for Energy Policy – Issues of Fairness and Sustainability. The overall topic of the challenge, conducted last fall, was the ethics of energy choices and energy research. Students across the country submitted 18 videos on topics ranging from fracking to wind farms, from nuclear waste disposal to smart grids, and from use of public transportation to the energy costs of the meat industry, according to NAE.

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Go Viral to Improve Health Contest

The Go Viral to Improve Health contest is a competition for undergraduate and graduate students to create innovate health-related apps, competing for high distinction and $18,000 in prizes. Sponsored by the Institute of Medicine and National Academy of Engineering, the contest is geared towards students pursuing degrees for careers in engineering, health, and computer sciences. The competition is designed to promote these students in interdisciplinary fields to translate health information into mobile application in order to address pressing health concerns.

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