The Perse School

Inventive Perse engineers take plaudits for camera creation

26 Apr 2018

Perse students have received a highly commended prize for their invention from the Engineering in Education award scheme.

For the last six months, a group of six Lower Sixth students have been working on an engineering project in collaboration with their sponsor ARM Holdings of Cambridge. The project, set by ARM, was to design and build an ‘event capture camera system’ which would notify a user on their smart-phone when a certain event had occurred.  Such a device might be used to detect a person gaining entry in a room, an animal passing in the jungle, or when a household object like a tumble dryer had finishing it’s cycle – an image or notification of the event would then be transmitted from the camera to the phone.

The group, consisting of James Mason, Owen Peckham, Aidan Jones, Edmund Prager, Richard Hughes and George Palozzi all worked together bringing a great range of skills to the mix including electronics, mechanical skills such as 3D CAD and software skills.

The team produced an excellent final product which they branded ‘IRIS’ (Image Recognition Internet System). The system used two Raspberry Pis, one of which they connected to a web server and the other connected to a camera. The two Pis communicated with each other over WiFi.

They then designed a basic Android App on their phone which connected to the webserver to retrieve the photos. The camera system was encased in a brilliantly designed box 3D printed in the school’s DT Department. Along with the working system, the team also designed and built a variety of mounting systems for a wide range of applications and built a stimulus box which simulated certain events for testing.

Presenting their work to a panel of judges at the Engineering in Education Assessment Day, the team gave a 20-minute presentation explaining the journey they had been on.  The panel gave very positive feedback saying it was a professionally made and viable product, presented confidently and to a very high standard. They also liked that idea that this has the benefit of adding SMART features to legacy products (an old washing machine for example).

Keith Wilkin, Head of design and technology said: “The team have learned a huge amount from this experience, they have worked hard to produce an excellent product  and it has been great to have collaborated with ARM, in Cambridge. A particular thank you to ARM’s Mark Collier, Senior Director Licensing Operations, for being a great mentor to the pupils.”

The Engineering in Education scheme is a national initiative enabling schools to work with local companies and work on a real project and have mentoring with their partner companies.

 
 
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