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Curtin Malaysia foundation students showcase physics projects

Miri – 10 July 2017 – More than 140 Foundation in Engineering and Science students of Curtin University, Malaysia (Curtin Malaysia) showcased their physics projects in a project showcase competition at the university recently.

15 projects were showcased, in which groups of students had to demonstrate effective application of physics concepts they had learned throughout their Foundation year.

Each group had to make a prototype of an unaided aqua ranger that could transport an egg a distance of at least one metre across water in a custom-made pool. In addition to applying what they had learnt in the design and construction of their prototypes, they had to research into how to maximise their performance.

The projects were judged in different competition categories, namely ‘Fast and Furious’ (the fastest to travel one metre), ‘Cost Effective’ (cost effectiveness of the project without compromising efficiency) and ‘Popularity’ (the most votes received from the judges).

Each group comprised 8 to 11 students who designed and built their prototypes within 13 weeks.

The showcase, held at the university’s Faculty of Engineering and Science building, was opened by Deputy Dean of the Faculty of Engineering and Science, Dr Vincent Lee and facilitated by the teaching staff of the Physics 062 unit - Hii Kiew Ling, Pang Po Ken, Lai Zhenyue and Natallee Faith Kwan.

The groups were given a few minutes each to introduce their prototypes before demonstrating their performance them for the judges. Each group was allowed three attempts to complete the 1-metre distance.

“This allowed the students to demonstrate their presentation skills as well as their flexibility in handling any sudden occurrences in a given time frame,” said Hii, co-ordinator of the Physics 062 unit.

Prizes were awarded for best performance in each category. Group ‘Killer Whale’ won in the Popularity category while group ‘ArchimedeShip’ came up tops in both the ‘Fast and Furious’ and ‘Cost Effective’ categories.

“All the groups did very well, delivering their projects on time and meeting all the criteria for the competition. The prizes only served as an encouragement and the students nevertheless participated wholeheartedly, giving their all to achieve the best results,” said Head of the Department of Foundation in Engineering and Science, Foad Motalebi.

The showcase drew a large crowd of students and staff who were all fascinated with the students’ work. Many remarked that it was a very effective platform for students to exhibit their creativity and innovativeness.

The participating students, meanwhile, expressed satisfaction in seeing the fruits of the labour performing well in the competition. They said they learned a lot in the process and appreciated the opportunity to conduct research and work in dynamic teams.

For more information on Curtin Malaysia, visit its website (, its Facebook page (CurtinMalaysia), Twitter profile (curtinmalaysia), Google+ page (Curtin Malaysia), Instagram (curtinmalaysia) or YouTube channel (Curtin Malaysia).

Dr Vincent Lee, Foad Motalebi (far left) and lecturers opening the showcase.

A prototype making the distance.

Member of ‘Killer Whale’ receiving prize in ‘Popularity’ category.

‘ArchimedeShip’, winners in the ‘Fast and Furious’ and ‘Cost Effective’ categories.