Liz, Poppy, Liusheng and Michelle have been working on their engineering project brief for the last six months, “To design and develop an outdoor mobile hot-spot unit that can provide Universal Mobile Telecommunications System and Long Term Evolution connectivity, supplying the user with Wi-Fi and standard Ethernet options”. The device contains a homemade directional antenna which detects a 3G signal from the nearest base station, by selecting and inserting the appropriate SIM card from the mobile operator with the strongest signal in a particular location. Data can then be relayed via Wi-Fi or by an Ethernet cable to a mobile phone, laptop or tablet. They were guided by Mr Chris Dean, from TinySphere Consultancy, who has also supported previous HMSG teams over the last three years.
In March the girls submitted a 50 page written report, finished making the prototype device and prepared an oral presentation, and on the morning of 7th April at the Awards and Presentation Day at Celtic Manor Resort Hotel, they set up a display stand and presented their work to a panel of judges. A second round of adjudicating then took place in the afternoon, which consisted of probing questions posed by engineering experts on behalf of the sponsors of the awards. During the awards ceremony the girls were delighted to win The Institution of Engineering and Technology Award for “Best Application of Engineering and Technology”, worth £500.
Liz, Poppy and Liusheng were then interviewed by a film crew from BBC Wales Today about girls opting to study engineering and appeared that evening on the 6.30pm programme.
Sixth Formers at HMSG have been taking part in the Engineering Education Scheme Wales for several years and this year’s success brings the school’s total to ten awards. The scheme was set up to give Sixth Formers a taste of engineering before applying to university, by linking them with an engineering company to work on a real-life project.
The pictures are of the four team members and two screen shots showing the girls’ Wi-Fi device being detected by a mobile phone and the strength of the signal.
Mrs Kavanagh (Head of Physics)
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