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UTC Swindon qualifies for Royal Navy Engineering Challenge

Students will take part in a final hosted by HMS Sultan in the Royal Naval Air Engineering's Newcomen hangar

Posted by Julian Owen | March 21, 2018 | Events

UTC Swindon students will be putting their engineering and teamwork skills to the test after qualifying to take part in the Royal Navy Engineering Challenge. Teams from across the UK were given a command brief to design an unmanned, powered, remotely operated system capable of clearing objects from the seabed. After submitting design reports showing their proposed solution, the team were selected for today's (21st March) competition finals. 

During the day-long final, the team will build its system and test it in a live situation using the facilities of the Newcomen hangar, where current Royal Navy Air Engineering technicians train. They will have two opportunities to use their system to clear objects from the test area – a 3m x 3.4m water tank including hazards and structures they must navigate. The students will also be tasked with delivering a presentation about their design and approach. The winners will be the teams which combine manoeuvrability, endurance, design quality and innovation with the most objects cleared from the test area. 

Principal of UTC Swindon, Jon Oliver, wished his team good luck: “This is a fantastic chance for the team to put into practice the engineering skills and teamwork that they learn here every day. The competition echoes the real-world approach that we take to learning at UTC Swindon. Our students have devised some ingenious responses to the challenge set by the Royal Navy and I wish them every success for the finals.” 

Team member Anthony Moran is looking forward to the final: “My team have worked hard to get to where we are. It also gives us the chance to understand more on the making of boats and ships. Our teacher has been very supportive of all the teams, which we are thankful for. I would encourage anyone to have a go, no matter how good a builder or designer they are.” 

The finalists have enjoyed the unusual opportunity of staying on Royal Navy warship HMS Bristol, a type 82 Destroyer berthed in Portsmouth, prior to the competition. 

Prospective students and their parents are invited to find out how the team fared, and be inspired about future careers, at UTC Swindon’s Open Event on Saturday 24th March. To learn more, visit

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