“Solutions R Us” and “InfoExperts” in the podium of EBEC Challenge Porto 2024

The 16th edition of the EBEC Challenge – European BEST Engineering Competition Challenge, took place at FEUP on February 24 and 25 2024, with mandatory preparatory training the week before. Dozens of teams made up of students from FEUP and FCUP designed a prototype in 24 hours, putting their creativity, problem-solving skills and teamwork to the test.

This competition is divided into two categories, Case Study (a theoretical test where a real company problem is given to solve) and Innovative Design (a practical test where the main objective is to build a prototype, with a limited number of materials and at low cost), and it was in the latter that the team “Solutions R Us“, composed of four 2nd year students from the Bachelor in Informatics and Computing Engineering, achieved the 1st place.

Afonso Machado, Bruno Aguiar, Francisco Fernandes and Lara Coelho took on the challenge of creating an attraction for an amusement park and built a prototype of an attraction with the theme of games of chance, such as casino roulette and russian roulette, adding suspense to the fun. The attraction spins, like a roulette wheel, and one of the sections is then lifted at random, leaving the participants almost in an horizontal position.

“The biggest challenge was to idealise and design our prototype taking into account our basic idea and some material limitations. We wanted it to be something original and different from today’s common attractions,” Lara Coelho tells us about the challenge which, in her words, “was overcome thanks to teamwork, high spirits and enthusiasm!”. The team ends their testimony by saying that what they enjoyed most were the moments of conviviality that this experience gave them, the friendliness of the other competitors and those in charge, and the satisfaction of seeing the result of their work, which made them very proud.

It was also with great pride that Amanda Tartarotti, Leonardo Garcia, Pedro Castro and Sara Cortez, the “InfoExperts“, L.EIC’s 2nd year students, won 2nd place in the Case Study category. The challenge consisted of presenting theoretical solutions to two problems placed on the spot: the first was about managing the reconstruction of a war-torn city in a sustainable way and the second was about developing a compression system for hydrogen fuel cells. According to Sara Cortez, the latter was really challenging because it wasn’t related to informatics, which made the result even more rewarding. Sara adds, “I’m immensely grateful for the amazing people in my team and for our proud second place”.

The EBEC Challenge Iberia, which would take the winning teams from the local rounds in Portugal and Spain to a grand final, will not be held this year, as happened last year with the “magic FoRMula” team, which after winning 1st place in the Porto competition, achieved 2nd place in this Iberian competition.

Since the 2013/2014 academic year, the EBEC Challenge Porto has been credited with 1,5 ECTS as a 40,5 hour training course.

Photo: BEST Porto

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