UCT student wipes the slate clean at global competition

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UCT student Kai Goodall’s “Pedal n Spin” design is a hand-cranked washing machine that easily spins using a combination of the principle of a pedal-operated system and a pedal-operated system. PHOTO: Provided

Kai Goodall, a student at the University of Cape Town (UCT), has been named the winner of the international People.Planet.Product Student Design Challenge.

Electrocomponents, a global omnichannel product and service solutions provider, announced the winners of the Student Design Challenge last week.

The challenge was launched early last year in conjunction with the company’s global social enterprise partner, The Washing Machine Project, a humanitarian initiative dedicated to easing the burden of handwashing in low-income communities and displaced, thanks to the design and distribution of innovative products.

The three winning designs that were selected from six global finalists in first, second and third place were Kai Goodall, Team Scentury and Joseph Baker, respectively. The challenge asked student members of the DesignSpark engineering community to apply original thinking and practical skills to the ongoing development of The Washing Machine project’s first water-efficient, off-the-grid hand crank washing machine, the Divya. Applications were invited in three different focus areas: people (empowering people to use the Divya by improving technology or design implementation); Planet (filtering gray water or microplastics); Product (promoting better posture through weight changes, portability, for example).

Goodall, currently a masters student in electrical engineering at UCT, mentioned that it was heartbreaking to see his durable and user-friendly washing machine design selected as one of the winners of the global competition.

“My UCT supervisor and President of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) South Africa, Dr David Oyedokun, inspired me to take part in the RS Components Student Design Challenge and I came out on top with my washing machine at Pedal n Spin innovation crank.

“Being the only African finalist in the competition and winning the top prize was a special recognition of my invention, and motivates me to take my passion to new frontiers and hopefully inspire more young people to use engineering as a a tool for their progress,” he said.

Goodall’s “Pedal n Spin” design is a hand-cranked washing machine that spins easily using a combination of the principle of a pedal system and a pedal system. It is a pedal operated, connected rod driven rotary drum washing machine system that is purely mechanical in nature.

It improves user posture, ease of use and durability of the current Divya washing machine, enabling longer term adoption, improved hygiene and increased spinning efficiency with enormous mechanical advantage.

The six finalists, including Team Oro (Product), Team Neolithic (Product) and Ketki Dave (Planet) pitched their designs in a live virtual event to a panel of judges from leading industry and humanitarian organizations.

Jury Judge Navjot Sawhney, Founder of The Washing Machine Project, said, “Together with the Electrocomponents Grassroots team, The Washing Machine Project designed the People.Planet.Product Student Design Challenge to inspire students with a background in science, technology, engineering and mathematics to get involved. in our humanitarian initiative.

“These are the scientists, engineers and mathematicians of tomorrow, and the incredible quality of designs we have seen through this challenge is truly heartwarming and proof that the younger generation is fully committed to playing their part in a sustainable future. .”

Goodall recently teamed up with Forest Creations, a sustainable woodworking company, to create four more upgraded Pedal n Spin units for donation and field testing in the Cape townships for manufacturing and sale. a more sustainable distribution.

“I welcome the collaboration and financial support in my attempt to deploy many more of these units, in order to provide healthy and sustainable innovation to those in need,” he concluded.


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For more information, collaboration or updates on Pedal n Spin washing machine innovation, email [email protected], connect on LinkedIn: Kai Goodall or follow him on Instagram: @kaigoodall.

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