Curtin Sarawak students win Inter-varsity Concrete Frisbee Competition

Civil Engineering

Ngu Ung Chai, Wong Pei Yee and Tang Zing Wei posing with their concrete frisbees.

Miri – 29 July 2011 – Three Civil and Construction Engineering students from Curtin University, Sarawak Malaysia (Curtin Sarawak) emerged the grand prize winners in the national-level Inter-varsity Concrete Frisbee Competition 2011 held at the University Teknologi Petronas (UTP) in Tronoh, Perak recently.

The three-day event from 18 to 20 July 2011 was organised by the Civil Engineering Students’ Society of UTP and saw the participations of 16 teams from eight universities nationwide.

The annual competition puts a twist into the popular recreational frisbee game by replacing conventional plastic frisbees with specially-designed ‘concrete frisbees’ made from materials such as cement, fine sand and fibreglass mesh.

The Curtin Sarawak team comprising final-year students Ngu Ung Chai, Tang Zing Wei and Wong Pei Yee garnered the most points in several judging categories to clinch the top spot. In addition to the grand prize, they also won in other categories, including ‘highest distance throw’ by Ung Chai who achieved a distance of 58.70m. In the weight test category, their frisbees were judged the second lightest.

To prepare for the competition, the trio spent three weeks designing and casting their concrete frisbees at Curtin Sarawak’s Structures Laboratory.

“The frisbees were designed to be as light and durable as possible. Essentially, we needed to produce a concrete disk that was able to rotate and maintain lift so as to fly. Part of the competition also required it to sustain a 4 metre drop,” explained Pei Yee.

Zing Wei, meanwhile, commented that the team’s knowledge of structural design was put to the test during the designing phase.

“We utilised our skills and knowledge gained from the structural design units in our course to come up with the design mixture for the frisbees. We experimented a lot and are really pleased with the outcome,” remarked Zing Wei.

The team was accompanied by lecturer Brabha Hari Nagaratnam, who commented that the students demonstrated considerable creativity and the ability to apply theories they have learnt. She also praised them for being able to work independently in creating the concrete mixtures for their frisbees.

In 2009, Curtin Sarawak made a name for itself in the same competition when three final-year Civil and Construction Engineering students made their concrete frisbees fly across distances exceeding 35 metres, achieving the farthest distances amongst the 19 teams from 11 universities across Malaysia. In addition, they came in second in the weight test for the lightest frisbees and their frisbees also fared well in the durability test.

The Civil and Construction Engineering programme at Curtin Sarawak is a four year honours programme fully accredited by the Board of Engineers Malaysia and Engineers Australia. For more information on Curtin Sarawak, visit its website at www.curtin.edu.my or e-mail enquiries@curtin.edu.my.

The students with accompanying lecturer Brabha Hari Nagaratnam

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