Design Innovation in Plastics competition: 2020 finalists await results

Six student finalists have presented their newly created products on the theme of urban living to a panel of judges at the finals of the Design Innovation in Plastics (DIP) competition, 2020.

Organised by the Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining and the Worshipful Company of Horners, and industry headline sponsored by Covestro, DIP this year challenged students to come up with a brand new product which would enhance life in a city environment, for use in flat or whilst commuting.

The finalists: Ellen Dack and Hannah Dempsey – Technological University Dublin; Matt Foord – Coventry University; Matt Shaw – De Montfort University; Kristen Tapping – London South Bank University; and Zihao Zhang – Brunel University, all presented their products via video conference in a day-long session presided by the panel of industry judges.

The judges had previously whittled down the original submitted entry of over 100 to a final six, and given each student a chance to refine their product before making their final presentation.

“The standard of presentations this year was high, and we were impressed by the effort and detailed research each individual had carried out,” said chairman of judges, Richard Brown. “All the finalists had taken on board the judges’ guidance, improving and refining their original designs, and we feel that there are two or three that could, with further support, be viable products for the market.

“Each student has done themselves and their universities proud, and we will look forward to revealing the results in July, when all our deliberations and preparations have been completed.”

First prize for the competition is a visit to Covestro, in Leverkusen, Germany, along with a cash prize. In addition, every one of the six finalists receives a short industry placement with one of the supporting competition sponsors: Brightworks, Innovate Product Design, PDD and RJG Technologies.

The six finalists and their products are:

Ellen Dack – third year Product Design, Technological University Dublin: Complanter – an easy to use composting unit ideal for people living in confined spaces and which also functions as a planter for herbs.

Hannah Dempsey – third year Product Design, Technological University Dublin: Workspace – a personal ‘desk’ for students, which promotes better posture while being capable of being used in a variety of confined spaces.

Matthew Foord – third year, Product Design, Coventry University: His versatile Transforming Urban Trolley is designed to be used on trains and buses or open city streets as an alternative to single-use carrier bags. Made with components that are 100 per cent recyclable.

Matthew Shaw – third year Product Design, De Montfort University: Andas One – a smart device, which measures air quality, and helps the user to plan the cleanest and most direct route to walk, when in an urban area.

Kristen Tapping – fourth year Product Design, London South Bank University: Rolloe – bicycle wheel caps that actively purify the air, making for a cleaner ride for the user.

Zihao Zhang – MSc Product Design, Brunel University: FREEFITNESS – A sustainable fitness dumbbell, which uses plastic bottles, providing the user with multiple options for doing an upper body workout.


About Covestro:

With 2019 sales of EUR 12.4 billion, Covestro is among the world’s largest polymer companies. Business activities are focused on the manufacture of high-tech polymer materials and the development of innovative solutions for products used in many areas of daily life. The main segments served are the automotive, construction, wood processing and furniture, and electrical and electronics industries. Other sectors include sports and leisure, cosmetics, health and the chemical industry itself. Covestro has 30 production sites worldwide and employs approximately 17,200 people (calculated as full-time equivalents) at the end of 2019.

Find more information at www.covestro.com.
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About Design Innovation in Plastics:

Established in 1985, Design Innovation in Plastics is the longest running student plastics design award in Europe. For more information visit www.designinnovationplastics.org
The Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining (IOM3) is a major UK engineering institution and is the professional body for the advancement of materials, minerals and mining to governments, industry, academia, the public and the professions. For more information visit www.iom3.org
The Worshipful Company of Horners is one of the oldest livery companies in the City of London and was formed to regulate the horn-working trade. In 1943 it adopted its modern equivalent, the plastics industry. For more information visit www.horners.org.uk

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