Students from Japan, Indonesia, Korea, Singapore, China and the University of Melbourne will come together to work on potential engineering collaborations and exchange big ideas.

While Deans of Schools of Engineering meet to discuss the ‘avalanche of change’ facing higher education, students will be involved in workshops that aim to broaden students’ perspectives through education, research and cross-cultural interactions.

The Asia-Ocenaia Top University League on Engineering (AOTULE) meeting held every year aims to encourage new ideas and student and staff mobility.

Director, Engineering Learning Unit at the Melbourne School of Engineering Professor David Shallcross said up to 65 students will be in Melbourne to present new research topics.

“Students are bringing ground-breaking ideas with them to Melbourne that could change the way we look at everyday engineering,” said Professor Shallcross.

“The projects and ideas are varied. From new technologies that can assist disabled people to control wheel-chairs with mind power, to 3D digital printers that draw images on a cappuccino.”

Engineering students are responding to some of the important issues and needs of society by working on real-life solutions.

Students from Infrastructure Engineering at Melbourne are expanding ideas on the use of renewable energy. Ground Source Heat Pump (GSHP) systems use the ground close to the surface as a source for thermal energy to provide sustainable heating and cooling of buildings.

While installation costs are currently high, students are looking at ways of improving design of the technology while keeping costs down.

Students from the Institute of Technology, Bandung, Indonesia have developed technology that will allow a normally-functioning brain trapped by paralysis to initiate movements via a Brain-Computer Interface (BCI).

“Engineering students are key to the conception and implementation of new and exciting ideas that improve lives,” said Professor Shallcross.