What better way to invest into Canada’s next generation of maritime engineering and sciences students than to give them an opportunity to show their stuff on the international stage.
This is just what Babcock Canada is doing by sponsoring students from Montreal’s École de Technologie Supérieure at IMarEST’s third biennial European International Submarine Races (eISR 2016). From July 6th to the 15th in Gosport, England, they will compete against 11 other international teams of students each challenged to design, build and race human-powered submarines.
Each one or two-person “wet” submarine is unique, designed from “scratch,” and relies upon novel techniques for propulsion and guidance. This student engineering competition fosters engagement in the ocean engineering and science disciplines as a way to address the developing shortfall in maritime engineering and sciences. It’s a particularly effective way to attract students into these career fields.
“It’s wonderful that we can work together to stoke up excitement about marine engineering and, by doing so, to encourage more young people into the sector,” said David Loosley, IMarEST Chief Executive.
The Canadian contingent from École de Technologie Supérieure has been developing human powered submarines since 1992 under the team name ‘OMER’ and be assured these are no toys. In 2007, the É.T.S. team and OMER 5 set what was then the world speed record reaching 8.035 knots. Today, students from the electrical, mechanical, software and automated engineering programs at É.T.S. are on their 10th generation of the OMER submarine. Earlier this year, Didier Lalonde –Dupuy, one of the É.T.S. students participating in the submarine races spent a co-op work term at Babcock Canada’s head office in Ottawa; which is where Babcock’s interest was sparked and the sponsorship opportunity first spoken about.
In addition to the race, students will benefit from a Careers’ Day where local sponsors including Babcock Canada’s parent Babcock International Group will have the chance to talk about the broad range of opportunities within their organizations.
“The European International Submarine Race is a great way of inspiring young people to consider careers in engineering and the broader maritime sector so there is a natural connection between Babcock and this event,” claims Jeff Owen, Business Growth, Marine & Technology Division, Babcock International Group.
“We’re passionate about developing young engineers and these races are an excellent way of raising the awareness of the fact that the marine industry offers tremendous technology and engineering challenges to inspire future engineers.”
“With our focus firmly on innovation and engineering excellence, Babcock wants to invest in the future of engineering. Adding our support to the Open Day and Master Classes, is a great opportunity to do that.”
Other student teams include representatives from Texas A&M, University of Michigan, Rhine-Waal University, University of Bath, Delft University of Technology, University of Auckland, University of Warwick and University of Washington.
Bentely Altizer, Captain of the University of Washington team, commented, “We have a very unique situation where dozens of people get together and rally around a common goal. It’s a really beautiful thing to see a group of people grow to be just as passionate as myself about a project like this. We build submarines for the world to see and we build trust, respect, and teamwork for ourselves.”