Caledonian College of Engineering (CCE) has successfully conducted a student symposium on mechanical engineering and mechatronics entitled MECHFIRE 2012. Over 40 students from six different universities and colleges within the Sultanate participated in this student-led one-day event. The symposium, which was organised by CCE’s Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, featured technical paper presentations, a display of technical projects and a technical quiz around the subjects of mechanical engineering and mechatronics, and including alternative energy resources, manufacturing and thermal engineering.
The symposium was inaugurated by the Chief Guest, Mr Salim Al Kindy, Managing Director of Tebodin & Partner LLC. Mr Salim emphasised in his address that although not everyone would be winning a prize during the symposium, all participants were winners by virtue of their interaction in the day’s activities. The Associate Dean for Professional Development, Ms Jenny Walker, welcomed guests and participants on behalf of the college, and stated that events such as these helped ensure that ‘innovation and creativity’, two words at the heart of the college mission, are given practical expression. The symposium chair, Professor K P Ramachandran, Associate Dean for Postgraduate and Research at CCE, emphasised the importance of events where students could showcase their creative and critical thinking skills.
As a token of appreciation for gracing the function, the Chief Guest, Mr Salim Al Kindy was presented with a memento by Mr.R. V.Murali, Deputy Head of Mechanical & Industrial Engineering.
The technical paper session was adjudicated by a panel of judges headed up by Dr Khamis Al Balushi, Innovation Consultant, Industrial Innovation Center and Prof K P Ramachandran. Eight technical papers were presented and there were lively interactions between the presenters, visitors and judges.
Dr Amer Al Hinai, Member of the Authority of Electricity Regulations, Oman adjudicated the nine project displays with Ms Jenny Walker. Students briefly explained to the judges their project aims and operating principles and commented on how the project exploited a new angle to existing project work in their chosen field.
The Technical Quiz was adjudicated by Dr Ramprasad, Head of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering and Co-chair of Mechfire 2012. Earlier in the event, Dr Ramprasad acknowledged the overwhelming response received from colleges and universities within the Sultanate of Oman. The participation of teams from other institutions helped engender a healthy sense of competition in the audio-visual quiz, helped by the professionalism of the quiz masters.
Awards and certificates were presented at a valedictory function, graced by Dr Ahmed Al Namaany, Chairperson of IEEE Oman Section. Dr Ahmed exhorted students to continue to get involved in activities that strengthened their technical prowess and gave them team building skills that would be invaluable to them in their careers. Meritorious certificates and cash prizes of RO100, RO60 and RO40 were distributed to the winners and thanks extended to the event sponsors (Galfar Engineering Contracting, Public Establishment for Industrial Estates (PEIE) and Advanced Oil Technology Company - Al Sulaimi Group Holding) for making the symposium possible.
Dr Amuthakkannan, one of the CCE coordinators of MECHFIRE 2012 together with Mr Murali, expressed confidence that MECHFIRE was firmly established now in the college’s calendar of events and looked forward to expanding the symposium to a multi-discipline science fair in the coming academic year.