18 June 2013

University of Melbourne students win chemeng design prize

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For the second year running, a team of students from the University of Melbourne, Australia has been awarded the much coveted 2013 Pratt Prize for its design on Production of Liquefied National Gas (LNG) from Coal Seam Gas (CSG).

The University of Melbourne’s winning team was Sarah Cerchi, Jeffrey Khor, Elanor Kloester, Stephanie Lynch and Katherine Papadakis with runners-up from RMIT and Monash University.

Professor Clive PrattThe Pratt Prize has become something of a ‘rite of passage’ for final year chemical engineering students in Victoria and is co-ordinated by the Joint Victorian Chemical Engineering Committee (JVCEC) with the winner automatically qualifying for the BOC Design Prize presented at Chemeca 2013 in September. 

IChemE Chartered Member and lead judge, Leon Prentice says that the overall quality of the entrants this year was excellent and the decision was very close.  In particular, strengths of the entrants included their process selection and discussion of the broader context of the projects.

“The winning entry was particularly excellent in its approach to calculation methodology, combining computer modelling with first-principles calculations.  Overall structure and cohesion of the reports were also important, with the overall goal being to write something that could be presented to a potential client.

The evening was near standing room only and was well represented by academia, with students in their penultimate years making up the largest group keen to glean tips offered by teams on how they managed their projects with feedback from how to communicate effectively as a team to the best beverages for keeping energy levels up.

Prizes were presented by IChemE Fellow, Robert Pratt, son of Clive, and the event was supported by ExxonMobil.

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IChemE is a registered charity in England & Wales (214379), and a charity registered in Scotland (SC 039661).