Won with the Wind: Loreto students scoop award with homemade turbine from paper, pins and paperclips

A team of Manchester students have won a national competition to help kick-start a renewable energy revolution – using nothing but household goods.

Students Efe Otobrise and Ayobobola Apampa, from the Loreto Sixth Form College in Manchester, created a working wind turbine using only paper, drawing pins and paperclips.

The innovative model claimed top-prize at the inaugural Revolutionise Renewable competition, organised by the University of Exeter.

“I felt a great deal of accomplishment and satisfaction that the research and long conversations with my partner about blade shapes paid off,” joked Efe.

“It shows that a little bit of creativity and time can go a long way.”

The competition challenged students between the ages of 15 and 18 to build a wind or hydro turbine using everyday items.

Judged by a panel of experts from Exeter’s Renewable Energy department, students strived to create a turbine to meet the strict criteria of innovation, design, and effectiveness and then post a video of their work on YouTube.

“We decided to create something inspired by nature,” Ayobobola said.

“Finding out that we won was a big surprise because we weren’t expecting to, but it was good to know that the time we spent thinking and researching and then making it paid off.”

Richard Cochrane, Director of Education for Renewable Energy at the University of Exeter, was delighted to see such pioneering designs produced by the students.

“We wanted students to really showcase their engineering talents, while also thinking about how renewable energy can be revolutionised to meet the challenges of tomorrow and I think everyone who took part met that challenge incredibly well,” he said.

Both Efe and Ayobobola bagged a weekend trip to Cornwall, where they will visit the Penryn Campus during the forthcoming Open Day, on Saturday, June 14.

Image courtesy of Stephanie Law, via YouTube, with thanks.

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