About this Blog
As part of the Rio Tinto Sports Innovation Challenge this Blog will act to highlight the latest news and developments not only within the Challenge itself but in the world of Sports Technology in general. Looking at the latest technology news, products on the market and leading research in the area as well as showcasing the latest developments on the Rio Tinto Sports Innovation Challenge.
What is the Rio Tinto Sports Innovation Challenge?
Rio Tinto have entered into a partnership with Imperial College London to create a curriculum based flagship project challenging engineering students to design, build and implement sporting equipment inspired by the Paralympic Games.
Rio Tinto’s sponsorship of the London 2012 Paralympic Games exclusively provided the metal to produce the 4,700 gold, silver and bronze medals at the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. Building on Imperial College and Rio Tinto’s long term collaboration, the Sports Innovation Challenge provides students with real world engineering problems, the overall aim being to make a tangible contribution to Paralympic sport and healthy lifestyles for people with disabilities.
The Sports Innovation Challenge has been integrated into the existing curriculum for engineering students, from 2nd year design courses through to final year and MSc course projects. Project topics are offered to students which have a Paralympic theme and which receive additional support through the initiative.
The departments in the Faculty of Engineering which are currently involved in the scheme are Bioengineering, Civil, Mechanical and Electrical and Electronic Engineering. Lectures and workshops are organised each year with external speakers that include elite athletes, sports technicians and industry professionals. In addition to providing specialist knowledge, the purpose of these events is to promote interaction between the departments at both student and academic level. Many of the projects require a range of skills from different departments and collaboration across the Faculty of Engineering is encouraged.
The Innovation Design Engineering course (jointly run by the Royal College of Art and Imperial College Mechanical Engineering Department) also run an intensive project as part of the Challenge. In 2013 this was combined with their GoGlobal module and saw the 40 students visit the University of Technology Sydney for a month to work on their novel concepts and solutions. Project development also continues during the summer months for students who opt to take part in the UROP (Undergraduate Research Opportunities Programme) scheme and a dedicated space has been refurbished and equipped for students to work on projects that are part of the Challenge.