Runa Mukherjee Parikh (Ahmedabad)
A 14-member team of Kumaraguru College of Technology, Coimbatore (KCT, estb.1984) bagged the communication prize (€2,000) in the Monaco Energy Boat Challenge (MEBC) international competition, in which technical universities from 21 countries participated. This year’s MEBC version 9.0 held in Monaco on July 6-9 required participating teams to build sustainable boats within specific design parameters and race them against each other. Among 16 teams in the energy class category, KCT’s Team Sea Sakthi was ranked #6 based on their performance in the qualifiers, endurance and slalom races.
Team Sea Sakthi— comprising engineering undergrads Mohan, Anjana Prasad, Manav R. Samant, Kishore K, Swaminathan C, Pratigya S, Shakthieswaran M, Anandh B, Vikash S, Naveen V, Gerontius Leo L, Vekash S, Barathraj M and Sanaa Mohammad — was mentored by KCT Garage, a student research and innovation hub established to prepare teams for national and international-level sports competitions. Technically and financially supported by the Pune-based Legrand India Pvt. Ltd, a company that manufactures electrical and digital building infrastructure, and Quench Chargers (Ador Digatron Pvt. Ltd), an electric charging solutions company and several other firms, the team submitted its prototype to MEBC in December 2021, and after it was approved, designed and fabricated their speed boat using a zero-emission energy propulsion engine.
“We decided to use aluminium to build the cockpit of our boat christened Yali. The boat is propelled by a Torqeedo electric motor of the Netherlands-based Rim Drive Technology powered by a 200AH lithium iron phosphate battery and flexible solar panels as a secondary source. Yali was successfully tested in Chennai port prior to the competition,” says Sanaa, spokesperson of Team Sea Shakti.
Now back in KCT, members of Team Sea Sakthi are enriched by the experience. “Designing, fabricating and racing our boat against college teams from 21 countries was an invaluable learning and benchmarking experience. It provided validation that our engineering programmes are as good as any in the world,” says Sanaa.