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Bourne Grammar School

Systems & Control - Cambridge Residential

Year 12 Systems & Control students have been participating in the eTrust scheme offered by the Engineering Development Trust.

Report by Campbell Pollock, Year 12

Year 12 Systems & Control students have been participating in the eTrust scheme offered by the Engineering Development Trust. Students have been developing ideas to solve a task presented by the engineering firm Landis+Gyr. This has involved weekly meetings with two of Landis+Gyr’s engineers. From these weekly meetings the students and mentors have prepared for their Cambridge University residential trip.

The Cambridge trip was a workshop that took place on Monday 15 and Tuesday 16 December. It was aimed to give the students two days of time devoted to furthering the development of their projects. Specifically, in BGS’s case, this was designing a product that can automatically crimp ferrules for electrical meters. The days involved spending time in Cambridge’s engineering labs.Students had free access to all of the university’s equipment. Everyone knew that they were being given, unrestricted, the run of one of the world’s best facilities.

The students based themselves in the electronics lab for the two days; here they had familiar and appropriate ‘toys’. Two sub-teams were created to tackle the pure electronics and 3D modelling of the product respectively. A new experience for all the students was managing time and each other; the mentors played a key part in helping the students with this. Throughout the experience the mentors brought in unfamiliar processes to students but ones that are commonplace in industry. There is also the converse of this - students bringing their own ideas to the mentor engineers. This is the goal for the EDT.

Highlights of the experience included: an overnight stay at the stunning St Catharine’s College, using the water-jet cutter in Cambridge’s workshop, using advanced software to produce 3D designs as well as successfully prototyping the product. The future of the project is producing a final product with a portfolio for a presentation just before the Easter holidays. In their free time students will be completing their design.