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TryEngineering Today!

TryEngineering Today! is dedicated to providing the latest news and information for students, parents, teachers, and counselors interested in engineering, computing technology and related topics.

June 14, 2017 | Innovation

Air pollution is a problem in many cities around the world. While planting trees in urban areas is a well-known way of fighting CO₂ emissions, this is not always a possibility in all cities. Understanding this, four friends worked to find a new strategy to tackle environmental problems in cities. Eventually they created the “CityTree”, a mobile installation that uses moss cultures to filter fine dust, nitrogen oxides, and a large amount of CO₂ emissions out of the air. They pollutants are then contained in the moss leaves. The installation is self-sufficient, requiring very little maintenance. Solar panels provide it electricity, Wi-Fi sensors measure pollution levels in the air, and collected rainwater is cycled through the ground to water it. The “CityTree” is available in two versions: with or without a bench. It also has a display for information or advertising.  

So far, 20 “CityTrees” have been placed in cities around the world. The team hopes that in the future they can introduce them to lower-income countries with higher levels of pollutants. 

June 12, 2017 | Innovation

Student engineers at the University of Michigan are in the process of creating a braille tablet with the ability to display both text and graphics. Unlike previous refreshable braille displays, which are limited to displaying text sentence by sentence, this new braille tablet will be able to display webpage text in full page increments. The developers have achieved this through the use of air pressure, which pushes specific bubbles up through holes beneath the screen so that they can be felt by users through the touch screen membrane on the surface of the tablet. Set to be released in two to three years’ time, these tablets will give blind people the ability to read not just webpage text, but also graphs, spreadsheets, and other digital content. With this new technology in their hands, The Holy Braille tablet will give blind people the ability to accomplish tasks in a fraction of the time than if they were using current technology.

plastic bottles
May 26, 2017 | Innovations

The New Plastics Economy Innovation Prize is calling for for designers, scientists, entrepreneurs, and academics 18 years of age and older, to create a plastics system that works. The competition aims to advance the design and recycling of plastics—particularly packaging—to keep valuable material out of the ocean. To achieve the goal of eliminating plastic packaging waste, the Prize is composed of two parallel challenges:

- The $1 million Circular Design Challenge which invites applicants to rethink how we can get products to people without generating plastic waste. The Challenge will focus on small-format packaging items (10% of all packaging) such as shampoo sachets, wrappers, straws and coffee cup lids, which are currently almost never recycled and often end up in the environment. Anyone with a good idea for how to get products to people without using disposable packaging can enter this Challenge partnered by OpenIDEO.

- The $1 million Circular Materials Challenge seeks ways to make all plastic packaging recyclable. About 13% of today’s packaging, such as crisp packets and food wrappers, is made of layers of different materials fused together. This multi-layer construction provides important functions like keeping food fresh, but also makes the packaging hard to recycle. The Challenge therefore invites innovators to find alternative materials that could be recycled or composted. The Challenge partner is NineSigma.

Winners will enter a 12-month accelerator programme offering exclusive access to industry experts, commercial guidance, feedback on user and scalability requirements, advice on performance expectations, and access to innovation labs for testing and development. The first winners will be announced later this year.

The New Plastics Economy Innovation Prize is led by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation and was launched in collaboration with HRH The Prince of Wales’s International Sustainability Unit. The Prize is funded by Wendy Schmidt, Lead Philanthropic Partner of the New Plastics Economy Initiative.

Learn more at: https://newplasticseconomy.org/innovation-prize



May 24, 2017 | Student Opportunities

MEC Data Challenge is a cutting-edge competition open to all enthusiastic scientist students in Europe who want to showcase their analytic and technical skills.

The participating students work in team (1-3 students) and have to develop algorithm for processing the significant cumulative big data from media sector:
• 3 500 000 data rows
• 475 users
• Desktop and mobile data

To reward the best teams, the three best projects will receive:
• 1st team: 3000€
• 2nd team: 1500€
• 3rd team: 500€

Deadline to submit proposals is:  June 25th 2017

Learn more at:


movie patrons
May 16, 2017 | Innovations

Check out this great article from Google about how machine learning is shedding light on gender bias in movies. 


May 15, 2017 | Student Opportunities

SnackDown is a multi round programming competition open to anyone with a knack for programming. Hosted by CodeChef, the competition was started in the year 2009.

The aim with SnackDown is to pit the finest computer programming brains from different parts of the globe against each other, under one roof in India. SnackDown also provides a unique opportunity for the top programmers of the world to get a flavour of India and at the same time let the Indian programmers meet top global programmers.The competition is open to everyone including the middle and high school students as well as working professionals.

The top prize in this competition is $10,000.

Register by 24 May 2017 at: https://www.codechef.com/snackdown/2017

Thank you teacher!
May 8, 2017 | Announcements

8-12 May 2017

TryEngineering would like to say THANK YOU to all of the educators around the globe working tirelessly to make a difference in the lives of young people. The work you do inspiring a future generation of thought leaders, innovators and trailblazers is immeasurable. We are proud to support and serve you!


Take time this week (and all year round) to #ThankATeacher who has made a difference in your life. 

IOT Screenshot

Welcome to a day of connectivity with the Internet of Things (IoT). From your home to your car, from the office to the store, learn what data your interactions generate and how it can be used. 

sorting table
April 25, 2017 | Innovations

As part of the EPICS in IEEE program, students at Clarkson University developed a solution to enhance the productivity of workers with disabilities at their local Arc chapter.The students designed a counting table to assist workers in their efforts to sort and count recyclables such as glass, aluminum, and plastic. The table reduced the need to double sort the materials and also enabled counts of the materials to be calculated and printed.  EPICS in IEEE empowers students to work with local service organizations to apply technical knowledge to implement solutions for a community’s unique challenges.To learn more about EPICS in IEEE or to donate to other great projects like this, please visit the EPICS in IEEE website at www.epicsinieee.org


April 21, 2017 | Events

On Earth Day, 22 April 2017, thousands across the globe will march in celebration of science and the valuable role it plays in our lives. The march has over 200 partner organizations including the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA), and the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). Some of the goals of the march are to: humanize science, partner with the public, advocate for open, inclusive, and accessible science, and support scientists.

Learn more at: https://www.marchforscience.com/




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