A Student of the University of Maribor’s Mechanical Engineering Faculty Wins the Aircraft Design Hackathon
On 17–20 July 2017, within the framework of the international European MAHEPA project, the 3-day Aircraft Design Hackathon was held in Ajdovščina, in which 20 students from 7 countries competed for a 3-month paid internship at Pipistrel Ajdovščina d.o.o. One of the hackathon winners is a student of the University of Maribor’s Mechanical Engineering Faculty Vasja Plesec.
During the Aircraft Design Hackathon, students split into 5 teams, presenting their ideas and concepts for the development of aircrafts equipped with hybrid electric drives.
The best, according to the contest committee, was a team of students from the Delft Technical University (Holland), the Milan Technical University (Italy), the University College of Oslo and Akershus (Norway), and the Mechanical Engineering Faculty of the University of Maribor (Slovenia).
During the creative hackathon, students became friends and mastered new technical knowledge and skills. Eventually, everyone became the winner of the hackathon, both students and partners of the project, because each of them had an opportunity of creating the future with their own hands – air transportation on hybrid electric planes. This experience is truly priceless.
The MAHEPA project received funds under the EU’s Obzorje 2020 programme for supporting research and innovation. The Slovenian company Pipistrel manages the project. Other participants include the University of Maribor, Compact Dynamics, DLR, the Ulm University (Germany), H2Fly, the Milan Technical University (Italy) and the Delft Technical University (Holland). The project objectives are in line with the European environmental standards for transportation, which aim to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 70% before 2050. The key result of the MAHEPA project will be a new modular hybrid-electric drive unit for small passenger aircrafts that will operate on alternative fuels or hydrogen, and will later be used on large airplanes.