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Students join 'Operation Antarctica' challenge

Two teams of students from UTC Reading have been selected to take part in the final of this year’s Royal Navy UTC Engineering Challenge, “Operation Antarctica”.

Students have been tasked with designing and constructing rescue vessels to retrieve “lost supplies” from a tank of water and deposit them in a designated water-based clearance zone. The teams will each have two attempts at completing their mission and will be awarded points in different categories to select an overall winner.

The two UTC Reading teams, called “Blazing Angels” and “Cruising Lifeboats”, have already been working hard on their designs, ready to compete against other UTCs from around the country in March. The final will take place at HMS SULTAN in Gosport.

STEM Co-ordinator Lewis Hutchinson is leading on the project at UTC Reading. Lewis said: “The students have really got into the project and it’s great to see how enthusiastic they are about it. Not only are they developing their leadership and teamwork skills, but also using their engineering expertise to work on a real-life problem which is a highly valuable experience for them.”

Year 11 student Caitlin Sutherland, team leader for the project, said: “It’s a really good experience having the responsibility of leading my team through this competition. I am a keen engineer and am really enjoying having to design and build something that meets the requirements.”

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