News Details | 12-Jan-2009

NTU undergraduates engineer an impactful launch for Singapore 2010 Youth Olympic Games logo

Expect an action-packed launch mechanism to dazzle the guests at the Singapore 2010 Youth Olympic Games logo unveiling come this Saturday, 10 January 2009.

A group of Nanyang Technological University (NTU) Art, Engineering and Science students design and build a multi-faceted launch mechanism for the Singapore 2010 logo.

The 14 undergraduates, hailing from three distinct disciplines — NTU’s School of Art, Design and Media (ADM), School of Physical and Mathematical Sciences (SPMS) and School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (MAE) — have combined artistic, scientific and engineering solutions to simulate mechanical actions symbolic of the 26 sporting categories the athletes will be participating in, come August 2010.
The model is developed with multiple steps to generate a chain reaction. Standing at a height of 2.5 metres by 7.6 metres, it presents distinctly differing actions – downward, upward and sideway motions – with the use of rolling balls, sports apparatus and many others as triggers. Computer modelling was used to simulate each mechanical movement and improvement was made to achieve a better design. To overcome budget and time constraints, the students creatively recycled used items and use materials that are cheaper and readily available.

Chairperson of the launch mechanism task force, 21-year-old Iris Kam Sok Yee, a year-two MAE undergraduate, says: “We are honoured to be given the opportunity to participate in the launch of the Singapore 2010 logo. All of us will still be at NTU when the Games kick-off in 2010. Hence we are thrilled to build a machine that shouts out how excited we are to be a part of the Youth Olympic Games. Even though we used up our spare time to work on top of our schoolwork, we were happy to as it was like a giant jigsaw puzzle and we are the contributing parts that connected to the finish. Our different trainings in school made it exciting for us to apply what we learned together. We also found solutions from countless directions. This one-of-a-kind opportunity has given us insight into out-of-the-box ideas for life. To manage and complete this is just like the satisfaction one gets from finishing a fantastic puzzle.”

As NTU prepares to be the inaugural games village, the 14 students aptly demonstrate strong team spirit and Olympic fervour in their expression of a launch mechanism that embodies the sporting categories expected at the Games next year.

“Designing the aesthetics for the launch mechanism has turned us into art engineers. We can appreciate the theories behind dimensions and elements that would normally be boring. To us, the artistic interpretations for each sporting feature are special because, these are guided in science and engineering logic and merged with art,” said Lui XingZhi, 21 years old, an ADM second year undergraduate.

The group is supported by faculty and technical staff members from MAE and ADM. The design and construction of the machine took about four months. MAE Assistant Chair, Lee Yong Tsui notes, “I am very impressed with their commitment which is evident in their craft. Though relatively raw in experience, the students have demonstrated their ability to create, design and build beyond the confines of their know-how. They form an efficient and seamless team producing a complex system using numerous innovative mechanisms. The end product is a symbol of the latent potential that our students have in becoming masters of their field in challenging situations.”

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Media contact
Ms Iris Kam Sok Yee, Chairperson, Launch Mechanism Task Force; Mobile: 96287901; Email:

Monica Khoo, Manager, Corporate Communications Office
Tel: 6790 4886; Mobile: 9125 2548; Email:


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