Triza Mkandawire, a PHY 223 student, makes a presentation

Practical Physics students impress at workshop

Students from the PHY 223 class (Practical Physics) recently impressed members of the private and public sector when they showcased practical applications of some of their lessons. This was at an event which their class lecturer, Associate Professor Chomora Mikeka, arranged on the evening of 17th April, 2019 at the Academic Workshop.

Invited guests who made it to the workshop included Mr Kuyeli (Director of Testing, Malawi Bureau of Standards), Ms Charlotte Neema (PG Student—Master in Environmental Science), Mrs E. Kululanga (National Coordinator on Weather—Food and Agriculture Organization), and Mr J. Pinifolo (TNM). These individuals formed the jury which decided on the presentations by the students.

A very proud Mikeka explained that due to monetary constraints, students were encouraged to use their imagination to source materials for their projects. “I told them to consider low cost materials, to innovate and think about recycled or scrap material, or any other items that could be easily found. I wanted them to think of the idea of junkyard engineering”, he said.

The students took up the challenge, and in addition to the purchase of low-cost items, they scavenged surrounding areas for materials, which they then fashioned into their displays.

The projects on display included centrifugal pumps, hydroelectric power generation devices, portable windmills, FM transmitters, an earthquake early warning system, and a thermoelectric plate, among others. The team that won the most points from the judges was that by Mike Gonthi and Byson Mazeka, who designed a Programmed Sensor Mode for Measuring the Weather.

After the presentations, some members of the industry were so excited by the projects that they asked the winning students to submit CVs on the spot.