A team of Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University students successfully reached the final of the Bosch China Internet of Things (IoT) Hackathon, which was held in Suzhou this summer.

The team – which included Duanyang Geng, Xinyuan Xu and Yang Ming from the Department of Industrial Design, Yitao Shi from the Department of Computer Science and Software Engineering, and Qiuchen Qian from the University of Birmingham – was one of only 15 to make the final from an initial pool of more than 100 competitors.

The four students from XJTLU are currently studying at the University of Liverpool as part of the 2+2 programme, and participated in the competition during their summer vacation.

According to Qiuchen, the Hackathon involved developing innovative track and trace techniques for international logistics.

“We had to track things like express boxes or containers, directly reading and tracking their specific location, information state or the ID through the internet, to achieve a high efficiency in resource utilisation,” she said.

“This is what science and technology itself is about – to free human beings from tedious labour.

“For example, we used a code scanning robot that can be put into factories where a large number of boxes need to be scanned.

By doing this, we were successful in decreasing human labour requirements and repetitive work through robot automation.

“This technology is already being used by some factories and saves considerable money for them.”

Fellow student Duanyang said the Hackathon experience gave him the chance to see how the knowledge and skills learned at university apply in industry settings.

“The competition helped us see how things work outside of universities,” he said.

“I also enjoyed the opportunity to meet a number of highly intelligent people during the competition. I was able to learn from them and improve my own skills in doing so.”

The team prepared for the preliminary and final competition in the XJTLU library. All of the soldering, assembly devices, components and chips for the experiments were provided by Laboratory 11213 at the University. Duanyang noted that staff from the University were very supportive of the team.

The team found out about the competition through the International Innovation Hub at XJTLU. Qiuchen Qian, who is in charge of IIH education and training, said an important function of IIH is to send XJTLU students to participate in innovative competitions in the business and industry circles.

IIH holds various activities, including innovation competitions, entrepreneurship programme roadshows, Plug and Play Entrepreneurship Hacker+Marathon, innovation and entrepreneurship mentoring and practical entrepreneurship training.

The hub contributes to the innovative and entrepreneurial atmosphere on campus, encouraging staff and students to actively take advantage of a range of opportunities and start their journeys as an innovators or entrepreneurs.

XJTLU students have actively participated in a number of competitions this year including the 2018 Deloitte Digital Innovation Elite Challenge and Bosch China IoT Hackathon.

Story provided by IIH, translated by Boqiang Xiao, edited by Guojuan Wang and Rosanna Galvin

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