(By Chen Chih-chung and Kendra Lin)
Taipei, Oct. 2 (CNA) A graduate student at Taiwan’s National Chiao Tung University (NCTU) on Tuesday won an engineering competition hosted by U.S. chip maker Intel in Taiwan, with his design of a wireless monitoring system that can quickly detect structural damage to bridges and buildings.
Ting Chun-ting, a civil engineering graduate student at NCTU, won the top prize in the final of the first Intel Taiwan Intelligent Systems Design Student Contest, bagging NT$50,000 (US$1,707) in cash, 20 sets of Intel D2000 processors, and a course package that will help his university establish an intelligence systems laboratory.
He will also be interviewed for an internship at Intel, while his instructor will be given a trip to participate in the Intel Asia Academic Forum in Malaysia Nov. 5-9, according to Intel Taiwan.
Ting, 23, said he began working on the design after he found that an often-used structural health monitoring system for school buildings and bridges was too expensive and unsuitable for wider application. He re-designed the system as wireless one and made it easier to detect structural damage with the use of smaller sensors.
Most times damage to buildings and bridges cannot be seen by the naked eye, Ting said. However, the frequency, cycle and other features of a structure would change after it has been shaken by an earthquake, he added.
Once databases are established for different types of structures, Ting said, his device will be able to detect even very small changes.
He said that during the design process, one of the major difficulties he encountered was the high volume of data sent wirelessly from the sensors. Ting said he eventually solved the problem by applying a special scheduling algorithm to process the data.