15 December 2022

Swinburne Sarawak students win Plant Design Competition at NACES 2022

KUCHING – A team of Swinburne University of Technology Sarawak Campus Chemical Engineering students emerged as champion in the Plant Design Competition at the recent National Chemical Engineering Symposium (NACES) 2022.

NACES is an international event organised annually by universities across Malaysia. Each year, NACES is conducted by a Malaysian university that offers the Chemical Engineering programme.

This year, the event was held from 22 to 24 November 2022 at Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM) Shah Alam with the theme of ‘Elucidating Salient Sustainable Pillars in Technological Advancement’.

The winning group, PRISMANE Team, comprised Sareena Lim, Stephanie Wong Ying Lin, Gladys Tan Ru Qian and Saif Ahmed Jeon. The team was supervised by Ir Dr How Bing Shen, Chemical Engineering Senior Lecturer at Swinburne Sarawak.

The team designed a cumene production plant from biomass as the raw material, with a circular economy process so there would be no waste released throughout the plant. The outlet streams would either be reused or sold.

“It is never an easy task to compete in a design project competition, given the tight timeline where students most likely need to rush for the submission due date while trying hard to maintain other academic performances. We are really proud of them for being able to walk through these challenges and for making Swinburne Sarawak more visible to the wider community,” said Dr How.

Wong described the competition as an interesting experience where they had to work under pressure and overcome the time constraint given to complete the report and overall project.

“It allowed us to learn so much especially how to modify and optimise processes to be more environmentally and economically sustainable. This project was significant to us as future engineers – to come up with innovative ideas and solutions on how to improve process systems and meet global expectations in sustainability,” she said.

Tan said that she was beyond grateful to have participated and won while Lim said the competition was eye-opening through the recommendations given to the group, which would help them to further improve for the next competition. 

“Participating in this competition has pushed me to grow as a person and enhance my cooperation and collaboration abilities. It taught me a lot about the work required to succeed, which has paid off handsomely,” said Saif.

At NACES 2022, another student – Abdulqader Mohammed Alawi bin Sahl – also won the second runner-up spot in the Technical Essay Competition.

“I felt very happy to have the opportunity to participate in the Technical Essay Competition again. This time, my technical essay highlighted decarbonisation strategies to greenify the oil and gas industry to achieve the ever-stringent net zero carbon dioxide emission goal by 2050.

“I want to express my gratitude towards Swinburne Sarawak for granting me this opportunity and UiTM for hosting a great event,” said Abdulqader.

As the advisor who led the teams in the competitions at NACES, Faculty of Engineering, Computing and Science Lecturer Dr Elaine Yeu Yee Lee expressed gratitude to the faculty for mindful care in making Swinburne students feel that they are seen, valued, and supported.

“Our students made us proud once again! I am grateful to our talented students for their hard work and for achieving excellent results at NACES 2022. The Plant Design Competition is very challenging because it involves many aspects of Chemical Engineering. This competition is definitely a valuable experience for students to learn and discuss with industry practitioners.

“I love seeing my students treat the competition journey as a learning process and reward themselves intrinsically with self-pride”, said Dr Yeu.

For more information on Swinburne Sarawak, visit its website (www.swinburne.edu.my), Facebook page (@swinburnesarawak), Instagram (@swinburnesarawak), Twitter page (@Swinburne_Swk) or YouTube channel (Swinburne Sarawak).

Media Enquiries

Tania Lam
Officer (Communication and Events)

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