02 October 2009

Award for Engineering Graduate

Photo: Michael Robinson

A talented Engineering alumnus outshone his peers by scooping a first place at the highly contested Science, Engineering & Technology Student of the Year Awards.

Michael Robinson, who recently graduated with an MEng in Materials Science and Engineering, was awarded the Morgan Crucible Award for the Best Materials Student at the annual ceremony last week in London's InterContinental Hotel. He fought off tough competition from record numbers of entrants from every major university in the United Kingdom and Ireland and was one of only 45 students shortlisted in fifteen different categories, all aimed at showcasing the exceptional achievements of students, graduates and universities.

Michael, 22, who graduated from the University in July and has now started on the Engineering Professional Excellence Graduate Programme at Rolls-Royce, received his prize for his High-Speed Machining of Aerospace Titanium Alloys. Machining is a critical step in the production of high quality aerospace components, where the degree of damage inputted into the materials surface can cause a reduction in properties and increase susceptibility to failure. A greater understanding of the deformation involved during the machining process formed the basis of Michael’s project.

The event, which was hosted by the comedian and broadcaster, Fred MacAulay, was attended by hundreds of technology students, academics and senior industry executives, as well as senior figures from government, scientific and technical institutions and the media.

Michael said: “It was a real honour to receive such a prestigious award, particularly having been competing against students from other top universities in the country. My final year project produced some really original research and will form the beginning of much further work into the area. I think the achievement shows the strength of the Engineering Materials department at the University of Sheffield, both in terms of teaching and research.”

Professor Mike Hounslow, Pro-Vice-Chancellor for the Faculty of Engineering commented: “Engineering is one of the great strengths of the city and the University of Sheffield. I am delighted that Michael and his lecturers have been recognised for their excellent work. He follows in a long tradition of students from the Faculty of Engineering winning in these, the Oscars for Science and Engineering students."