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Student News

2014-03-23
ME Students show prowess in UAV design competition

A student team from PolyU has made a strong presence in the 2014 Taiwan Innovative Unmanned Aircraft Vehicle (UAV) Design Competition by taking home the Second Runner-up (Navigated Flight Category). It is also the second time that a university team from Hong Kong was honored in this regional competition since its launch seven years ago.

Organized by National Cheung Kung University (NCKU), the UAV competition has drawn the participation of 69 teams from universities and institutes all over the world this year. Led by Professor Wen Chih-yung and Associate Professor Dr Su Zhongqing of PolyU’s Department of Mechanical Engineering (ME), the team was named “Poly-Eagle” and with the following undergraduate students, namely Wong Pak Hang (team leader), Tsang Wilson and Yip Hoi Yan.

The team was asked to build an unmanned aircraft vehicle from scratch and integrate its design with advanced Global Positioning System (GPS) technology to perform a simulated rescue mission and identify several missing objects in a wide coverage with a journey of approximately 10 kilometers. The whole mission including submission of the final report must be completed within 40 minutes. On top of the rescue mission, the entrants were graded on five items – type and quantity of rescue targets, initial coordinates, accurate coordinates, return to base safely and final report.

Aviation expert Professor Wen Chih-yung is pleased to see that “Poly-Eagle” designed by PolyU students has successfully demonstrated its capability to fly and meet the challenge of inspecting a wide region under the satellite navigation and identify targets based on real-time video recording.  He added that such UAV technology is used not only in rescue mission but also for other applications such as border control.

Looking ahead, PolyU is committed to providing high-quality research and education in aeronautical engineering and aviation to push the frontier of knowledge and groom professional manpower for the industry. The Department of Mechanical Engineering is currently offering an Aviation stream under BEng in ME, and two specialisms leading respectively to the award of MSc in Mechanical Engineering (Aeronautical Engineering) and MSc in Mechanical Engineering (Aviation). On top of that, the University is also going to launch a top-up degree in Air Transport Engineering in Sep. 2014.

The UAV competition organized by National Cheng Kung University is well acknowledged as one of the key UAV events in the world with recognition from the community, governmental agencies, universities and industrial partners. It covers five categories: Fundamental Design (Engine), Fundamental Design (Motor), Advanced Design, Navigated Flight and Flapping Wing Vehicle. The competition was held on NCKU campus in Southern Taiwan from 22 to 23 March 2014.