Nurturing creativity and innovation in students

The School of Science and Technology (SST) sought to provide valuable research and innovation experience to its undergraduate students undertaking their final semester project by organising WOUTech ’23.

This technology and innovation poster exhibition (WOUTech) was held on 19 March 2023 in a hybrid mode. Twenty-seven students from the Bachelor of Technology (BTech) programmes participated in the poster competition. They comprised 15 from mechatronics (BTME), six from electronics (BTEL), and six from construction management (BTCM).

Ng Jun Cong, who won for Best Demonstration, explains his innovation titled ‘Machine-based Vision System for Product Recognition’.

The exhibition was held in-person at the main campus in Penang as well as online via MS Team for students from the other regional centres.  It showcased the final semester posters of the university’s students, highlighting their expertise and creativity in a wide range of topics related to science and technology.

A 5-member judging panel was on hand to evaluate the posters. The panel consisted of two industry experts, Dr Leow Cheah Wei, Director of Lingkail Sdn Bhd, and Goon Koon Yin, the CEO of TT Vision Holding Sdn Bhd, along with three senior SST academics – Dean, Assoc Prof Dr Sean Tan Koon Tatt, Prof Abdul Rashid Abdul Aziz and Assoc Prof Ir Dr Arjuna Marzuki.

A participant showcases his product to the judges.

“The exhibition exposed the students to research and innovation, inspired them to be creative and innovative, and served as a platform for them to share their knowledge, research effort and experience, thus contributing to the advancement of engineering and technology,” Dr Tan asserted.

The winners each received a cash prize of M200. The Best Poster award went to Terence Leong Chee Meng of Ipoh from BTEL.  Student Parkashwaran Mahgeshwaran of BTME won for Best Presentation, and Ng Jun Cong of BTEL for Best Demonstration; both are from Penang. The lucky draw prize winner of a microcontroller board was student Pavindradass Ramash.

Parkashwaran with his smart monitoring system (IoT) model.

The keynote speaker for the event, Dr Leow, spoke on ‘RT-Thread and its Applications in Industrial IoT’, where he highlighted the industrial application of RT thread.

He explained that RT-Thread is an open-source real-time operating system designed for embedded systems. Since it is designed to be lightweight and efficient, this makes it well-suited for use in Internet of Things (IoT) devices.

Dr Leow talks about applying RT-Thread in IoT devices.

Dr Leow said the key feature of RT-Thread is its support for multiple threads and real-time scheduling. In regards to the application of RT-thread in Industrial IoT (IIoT), he said it can be used to control the movement of robotic arms, monitor the temperature of machinery, or control the flow of liquid through pipes.

He stressed that RT threads are essential in IIoT systems, where precise timing and fast response are critical. “RT threads can improve the reliability, accuracy, and determinism of these systems, and ensure that they operate within specified performance parameters,” he added.

Goon urges the students to take up engineering.

In his closing address, Goon praised the event and encouraged the students to pursue the engineering field.

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