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Students' light installation revealed at Reading Station

UTC Reading students impressed the public as they revealed their lighting installation outside Reading Station last week.

“The Connections Challenge” was launched as a project day in September 2016. The challenge was to design an innovative lighting installation for Reading Station Forecourt. The winning design was named “The Egg” and the students then had the opportunity to take the design forward to refine and manufacture the product. During weekly Friday enrichment sessions, Fraser Tooth (Peter Brett Associates) and Stuart Melrose (Stuart Melrose Furniture Design) supported and mentored the students to develop their design.

The students were assigned to different teams based on their specialisms; these groups were Electrical Engineering, Computer Science Coding and Design and Manufacture. From the initial design, the students decided to create a more abstract design based on faceted shapes and edges. The sculpture and the background art were designed to appear seamless and to communicate the theme of connections.

The students had a hands-on approach and were tasked with wiring up the electronics for the inside of the structure. In addition to this, students also had to code using Raspberry Pis and Arduinos to make the L.E.Ds change colour when a train arrives at Reading Station. The students made this feature for the NEXUS sculpture so that it could interact with the public and the surrounding environment.

The students, their families and staff from UTC Reading were invited to the Light Up Reading event on Thursday 1 December. This was a great spectacle, highlighting the rich culture of Reading. It was a fantastic opportunity to see the project come to life and to be involved in such a wide spread event.

We hope you have the opportunity to go and see this yourselves while it is up outside the station and we look forward to bringing the sculpture back to UTC Reading towards the end of December.

Well done to all students and staff involved in the project; Caitlin Sutherland, Thomas Witham, Fraser Bradshaw, James Piper, Aiden Leeming, Stephanie Mitchell (Director of Industry Relations and Teacher of Design, Technology and Engineering) and Georgios Aronis (Teacher of Science and Electronics).

Take a look at the full gallery of photos.

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  • University of Reading
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  • Peter Brett