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CUT students embrace innovative designs using new techniques

───   CASEY-LEE ANTHONY 14:54 Wed, 22 May 2024

CUT students embrace innovative designs using new techniques | News Article
Top 3 designs. Picture: CUT News

“To solve x in the real world, you would need real-world tools and skills in addition to innovation, just as you need math tools and abilities plus a dash of creativity to figure out which combination of these will solve x on paper.”

Central University of Technology students have designed new and innovative coffee mugs with repurposed materials, to better understand problem-solving.

“Two hundred and seventy students were divided into groups of three students each,” said lecturer Dr Michelle Erasmus, the entrepreneurship facilitator in the Mathematics Department, “and had to take part in a three-part skills assignment which included welding, CAD (Computer Aided Design) drawing, and 3D printing a coffee mug with one unique feature and making a cement brick where the stone component had to be replaced with a repurposed material without compromising strength integrity.”

After the students completed these three skill tasks, the top 10 groups with the best coffee mug design and strongest brick component were selected to take part in the competition.

The winning team was Corbin Smit, Christo-Charl Cromhout, and Asaph Norman. Dr Michelle Erasmus is on the right. Picture: CUT News

The competition took place on Tuesday (7/5) at 11:00 at the idea-Gym, which is CUT's innovation and entrepreneurship hub, run by Dr Conradie.

“This competition is a result of a compulsory innovation assignment included in the Mathematics 3 subject content. Mathematics 3 runs in the first semester of every year and the innovation assignment competition is hosted in May,” said Erasmus.

She added that this was something that to solve x in the real world, you would need real-world tools and skills in addition to innovation, just as you need math tools and abilities plus a dash of creativity to figure out which combination of these will solve x on paper.

In second place were students Koena Lehloba, Shania Chipurura, and Thabiso Lebambo. Picture: CUT News

“The winning entry was initially inspired by a boat’s propeller: the cup had a propeller on the base on the inside that could spin as water is poured onto it, just as a windmill would spin as the wind would go through it,” said Asaph Norman, CUT student and one of the winners.

Asaph said the win came as a total surprise to him and his teammates as this started as just a simple mathematics assignment, and his focus was to get a good result.

“Winning the competition opened up many opportunities and future ideas that would be a great opportunity to take as students.”

Students in third place, Bridgette Modibedi, Mojaki Mohlakoane, and Lesedi Seekoei. Picture: CUT News

The winning design has the potential to be entered into a competition later this year and is highly regarded.

OFM News/Casey-Lee Anthony cg

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