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UOWD team advances into semi-final round of ‘Expo 2020 Live University Innovation Program'

Thursday, February 21, 2019/ Editor -  


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The team developed an Internet-connected hard hat with advanced safety features and comfort

Dubai, February 21, 2019: A technologically advanced Internet-connected hard hat that ensures high levels of safety and comfort for construction workers was among the innovations that made it to the semi-final stage of the Expo Live University Innovation Program recently.

Developed by three-member student team from University of Wollongong in Dubai (UOWD), the Smart Hard Hat features sweat and temperature sensors that read the user’s body temperature and to detect onset of fatigue and dehydration, a photo-luminescent thread for lighting in the dark and a solar chip that converts light energy into electrical power. 

The Smart Hat is made from advanced and durable lightweight materials to ensure ultimate protection and comfort. The embedded sensors can be connected to the internet, enabling collective data feedback into the respective government department systems.

The smart hard hat was developed by the students mentoed by Dr Soly Mathew Biju, Associate Professor and Dr Ciara O’Driscoll, Assistant Professor, UOWD. Team Smart Shelters came up with an idea to transform the traditional hard hat into a technologically advanced safety hat that will not only provide them with the necessary protection but will also increase their performance and comfort. 

Team Smart Shelters -- consisting of Ayesha Riyaz and Farhana Islam, both Bachelor of Computer Science students and Damini Mulchandani, a BCom (Finance) student -- was chosen from among 500 university applicants from more than 45 universities. 

The Expo Live University Innovation Programme gives young innovators the opportunity to find solutions to the region’s most challenging problems. Each application was assessed by an evaluation body comprising Expo 2020 Dubai experts and evaluated on one of EXPO 2020’s three sub-themes: Opportunity, Mobility and Sustainability.

Commenting on behalf of Team Smart Shelters, Ayesha Riyaz said: “It was quite a thrilling experience to present our idea in front of other university teams and the judges of Expo Live 2020. This event exposed us to so many other innovative ideas and provided us with a deeper understanding of the problems around the world and the need to come up with solutions”.

The Expo Live University Innovation Programme helps students generate viable solutions to real-world problems by supporting research and development or creating commercial applications. Amongst many other benefits, successful applicants have the chance to build partnerships with local governments, business incubators, accelerators, mentors and investors.

Expo Live is providing funding, guidance and exposure to help student teams take their ideas to the next level. Grants of up to Dhs25,000 are offered to the winning teams in order to accelerate the validation and prototyping of innovative concepts relevant to the UAE and the region. 

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