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Young talent impresses MTA judges

The final judging for the MTA’s annual Technology, Design and Innovation (TDI) Challenge took place this week at Yamazaki Mazak’s European Headquarters in Worcester. Judges from the MTA’s Education and Training Committee were very  impressed with the engineering talent shown by all 12 finalists.

Open to all Technology and Design students, the nation-wide competition is split into two age groups: 14-16 years old and 17-19 years old. The two overall winners were: Ben Murray (right in photo), from Balcarras School – Cheltenham, in the 14-16 years category with his design for a hand held stabiliser for filming on a mobile phone and Charlie Smith (left in photo), from Sedbergh School – Cumbria, in the 17-19 years category for his innovative ‘SOLA’, a water heating stove for outdoor expeditions.

The MTA's TDI Challenge exists to help teachers and lecturers promote the great work of their D&T and Engineering students and to celebrate the creativity and innovation taking place inside the curriculum. The TDI Challenge is free to enter for all students and schools.

Howard Bamforth, Chair of the Judges and Sales Director of 600 UK, said, "The judging panel were impressed with the high calibre of this year's finalists and the range of different technologies they used. That made judging this year particularly difficult but two entries stood out even from such a high quality field. Charlie Smith and Ben Murray both presented work of very high standard that had been thoroughly researched, well manufactured and were virtually ready for sale. Congratulations to them and their schools."

Ben Murray said:
“The competition was a wonderful experience and I enjoyed looking over all the other projects on display as well as the Mazak factory.”

Charlie Smith said:
“I’m really delighted to have won. I put a lot of work into the project and it’s great to have that recognised and feel rewarded.”

The chosen finalists displayed their portfolios of work in Mazak's atrium and gave a brief presentation on their projects to the judging panel. All finalists received a guided tour of Yamazaki Mazak’s European Technology Centre, a presentation certificate and goodie bag, featuring a Raspberry Pi, to take home.

Thanks goes to Yamazaki Mazak for hosting the judging day and to the members of MTA’s Education and Training Committee judging panel.