Sandia National Laboratories sponsored it’s second engineering design competition of the Fall 2023 academic semester at Prairie View Texas A&M University
Sandia National Laboratories sponsored Panthers Invent this past weekend at Prairie View A&M University; a three-day engineering design experience where 40 students competed for nearly $2500 in scholarship funds. This was the second competition sponsored by the lab across the Texas A&M University System in September.
Competition teams are given a statement that describes a national security issue that requires them to produce a technically feasible and commercially viable prototype according to a set of design requirements.
“Panthers Invent is all about fostering innovation; this year, we had some outstanding challenges lined up for the students to tackle. From sustainable solutions to cutting-edge technology, our students explored it all. Their ideas have the potential to shape the future, and I couldn’t be more excited for them.” Said, Dr. Magesh Rajan, Vice President for Research & Innovation at Prairie View A&M University.
Former Sandia National Laboratories engineer and Assistant Vice Chancelor to the Texas A&M University National Laboratories Office, Dr. Arnold Muyshondt, P.E. said that “It’s amazing to see the ingenuity and inventiveness of what they can do over a 48-hour period. The fact that one of these teams produced a mock sensor device that actually worked by the end of the weekend-long competition is beyond noteworthy.”
Each of the eight competition teams included students from multiple science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) disciplines. Participant majors included, mechanical and electrical engineering, computer science, architecture, biology, etc.
Suzanne Moore, Research and Development Systems Engineer, with Sandia National Laboratories said, “This event provides engineering students with the opportunity to work in multidisciplinary teams, just like we do in industry. In school, they are used to working with other engineers of the same discipline. During this event, our mentors work with each group to navigate those challenges and focus on one mission regardless of their technical background.”
In October, Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL), will host another Aggies Invent scholarship competition on campus at Texas A&M University.
Evelyn Mullen, Former Weapons Executive at LANL and on-site advisor to the System’s National Laboratories Office hopes to see the following at the Los Alamos National Laboratory Aggie Invent competition later this year. “At Los Alamos, we take on the hardest national security challenges. We’re looking for students that show exceptional abilities to work as part of multi-disciplinary teams to convert ideas into actionable solutions to address real-world national security problems. This event is an opportunity to showcase exceptional Aggie talent.” Said Mullen.
The Texas A&M University System’s National Laboratories Office Supports the Department of Energy’s National Laboratories in execution of their missions as they relate to national security and service.
The Texas A&M University System is one of the largest systems of higher education in the nation, with a budget of $7.2 billion. Through a statewide network of 11 universities, a comprehensive health science center, eight state agencies, and the RELLIS Campus, the Texas A&M System educates more than 152,000 students and makes more than 24 million additional educational contacts through service and outreach programs each year. System-wide, research and development expenditures exceed $1 billion and help drive the state’s economy.
Sandia National Laboratories is operated and managed by National Technology and Engineering Solutions of Sandia, LLC., a wholly owned subsidiary of Honeywell International, Inc. National Technology and Engineering Solutions of Sandia operates Sandia National Laboratories as a contractor for the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) and supports numerous federal, state, and local government agencies, companies, and organizations.