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UC3M EBEC 2015

EBEC 2015 en la UC3M

For the ninth consecutive year, the UC3M student association BEST (Board of European Students of Technology) participated in the EBEC (European BEST Engineering Competition), the most important student engineering competition in Europe, putting their knowledge, creativity and teamwork skills to the test.

Universidad Carlos III de Madrid (UC3M) hosted one of the 83 local phases of the EBEC on November 4th and 6th. In turn, this competition was held at 10 other Spanish universities as well as at other European universities. The winning teams from Spanish universities in the local phase of the EBEC will meet at a national final in a few months. There, the team that will represent Spain to compete against the other European finalists will be decided.

In the EBEC held at the UC3M, 12 teams of four persons each participated, doing two trials on different days: first, Team Design, which required students to build a prototype of a small hydroelectric plant; and then, a Case Study, where they faced the challenge of planning the complete operations of an ecological farm. The teams were made of up engineering students from the University, most of them aerospace or industrial engineers. Also competing were Electronic Technology, Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, and Communications and Telecommunications Systems students, and Master’s students in Industrial Engineering.

To pass the Team Design trial, the prototype of the hydroelectric plant had to meet several requirements, according to this year’s coordinator of the local phase of the EBEC Madrid Carlos III, Cristina Sobrino. “The prototype had to collect water from a small basin (which represents a reservoir), raise it to a certain height (at least 30 centimeters), store it in a tank with a floodgate, transfer the water and get it to fall onto a little mill wheel, which is how electricity is produced in the case of a hydroelectric plant.”

In the Case Study, the contestants had to solve an engineering problem that simulated a real situation in a company. Specifically, they had to plan the organization and infrastructures necessary to run an ecological agricultural facility. As in the previous trial, the participants could not use Internet, so they had to depend entirely on their own knowledge.

In the EBEC, participants had to demonstrate a balanced combination of skills: teamwork, negotiation, strategic planning and sustainable management of the project. “I think it’s a fun competition we all learn a lot from, participants, organizers and members of the panel alike. I would highlight the teamwork, the camaraderie and the good atmosphere among the participants and organizers,” said Sobrino.

The national final will be held at the UC3M around April, according to EBEC Spain 2016 public relations coordinator Oscar Rubiano Leon, an Industrial Technologies engineering student at the UC3M. There will be six teams for each category (a total of 12) from different universities around Spain: the Universidad Politécnica de Valencia, the Universidad de Valladolid, the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, the Universidad Politécnica de Catalunya, the Universidad de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria and the UC3M. “This competition does well in representing the values of BEST: bringing together students, universities and companies,” said Rubiano.

The association BEST - UC3M is a branch of the association BEST - Europe and is not only involved in this contest, but also organizes summer courses and complementary training, and fosters contact with other engineering students from all over Europe.

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