Diversity is a key driver of innovation, so it’s no surprise that Airbus’ latest student challenge – Fly Your Ideas 2015, which sought innovative new concepts to help shape the future of aviation – featured the most diverse line-up of participants in this global competition’s history.
Fly Your Ideas 2015 was the fourth edition of Airbus’ biennial challenge, organised since 2012 in partnership with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) to inspire the next generation of innovators, as well as to show the exciting opportunities offered by the aviation sector.
The 2015 competition concluded with a final ceremony held this month in Hamburg, Germany, where Team MULTIFUN from Delft University of Technology (The Netherlands) was crowned as champion. In addition to the coveted trophy, the five-member team received a top prize of 30,000 euros for its idea to dress aircraft wings in a composite skin that harvests energy from natural vibrations or wing flex.
A total of 518 multi-disciplinary teams representing 3,700 students from 104 countries submitted projects for Fly Your Ideas 2015 – with 100 teams, consisting of 413 students of 48 nationalities, subsequently chosen for Round Two.
Of the Round Two qualifiers, 45 per cent were based in the Asia-Pacific region, 35 per cent in Europe and 15 per cent in the Americas; more than 71 per cent of all teams included a mix of students from different nationalities, genders and/or courses of study.
For Round Three, Team MULTIFUN was joined by four other finalists: Team BIRDPORT from the University of Tokyo (Japan); Team AFT-BURNER-REVERSER from Northwestern Polytechnical University (China); Team RETROLLEY from the University of São Paulo (Brazil); and Team BOLLEBOOS from City University London (UK).
Continuing the competition’s high level of diversity, these Round Three teams comprised eight nationalities from nine universities, with a mix of engineering/non-engineering backgrounds and a greater percentage of female students than ever before. The winning team worked across 4 countries on 3 continents for the duration of the competition, meeting all together for the first time at the final in Hamburg.
Selecting the Fly Your Ideas 2015 winner was a prestigious jury of Airbus and industry experts led by Charles Champion, Airbus Executive Vice President Engineering. visit Fly Your Ideas website
For additional information on the 2015 student challenge, see the press release. and visit Fly Your Ideas website
Airbus Fly Your Ideas 2015 finalist teams Bolleboos, Multifun, Aft-Burner-Reverser, Birdport and Retrolley gather on stage with the expert Jury chaired by Airbus Executive Vice President Engineering, and Patron of Fly Your Ideas, Charles Champion, following the competition final in Hamburg, 27 May, 2015.