Challenger Engineering students design and build complex fabrication machine

Challenger Engineering international students

In a major achievement, five international Advanced Diploma of Engineering students from South Metropolitan TAFE have designed and built a complex digital 3D machining centre.

The computer controlled machine (CNC machining centre) was the product of a year of work by a team of ten Advanced Diploma of Engineering students who designed a unique split-level flatbed machining centre, applying the mathematics, physics and engineering principles acquired through their studies.

The group comprised students from Azerbaijan, Vietnam, Hong Kong, USA, Pakistan as well as local students.

This CNC machine is able to be a plasma cutter, 3D printer, mould manufacturer, robot welder, milling machine and more, processing a variety of materials. This is an impressive achievement with patent and new commercial prospects.

"The students have designed and built a large format CNC machining centre that is truly unique. The students' design skills saw the project delivered on budget and on time. They were able to use advanced design software to achieve this remarkable result," lecturer Ross Jarvis said.

"This was the most ambitious student project we have ever undertaken and they have managed to deliver a commercially viable complex tool that offers various improvements on existing models, and they've done it in addition to their regular course workload," he said.

South Metropolitan TAFE's Advanced Diploma has been awarded international recognition by the International Engineering Alliance (IEA), having earlier become the first vocational ​course of its kind in Australia to be accredited by Engineers Australia.

The project was completed at South Metropolitan TAFE's well equipped Fab Lab (Fabrication Laboratory) in Fremantle. Challenger joined this worldwide community in 2012. The concept emerged in 2001 at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and since then more than 120 Fab Labs have sprung up in 34 countries around the world to shares ideas and information about digital fabrication.

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