2021
ENGINEERING CREATIVITY AWARD

Sponsored by HEB Construction

A project or product where art, design, technology and engineering collide to create something eye-catching, disruptive and different to the norm.

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FINALISTS

SCION’S TE WHARE NUI O TUTEATA

Dunning Thornton, Structural Engineers

Scion’s striking building, Te Whare Nui o Tuteata, showcases innovative technologies for large buildings in timber that are climate-friendly, earthquake-resilient, and cost-effective.

The structural form of Scion is an engineer's dream – it’s both stiff and ductile (able to absorb earthquake energy) and provides a uniting aesthetic to the building.

The building is also truly sustainable. It’s constructed out of New Zealand’s fast growing radiata pine and stores approximately 418 tonnes of CO2 equivalent for the life of the building. This is equivalent to the emissions from 160 return flights between Auckland and London.

 

Scion is a big step forward for mass timber buildings in Aotearoa, and in the journey to find a new architecture in modern wood materials. The building demonstrates the wide range of uses wood materials can be put to. It’s believed there’s no timber diagrid in this form anywhere else on the planet!

LIFE IN PLASTIC, IT'S FANTASTIC: 3D PRINTED ANATOMICAL MODELS

Creative Design and Additive Manufacturing Lab, University of Auckland

These incredible world-first 3D printed full-colour anatomical visualisation tools represent true science – and double as beautiful works of art. They're an exemplar of how engineering is integral to every industry and play an important role in the global medical community.

The medical community has long needed better tools to visualise medical conditions, do surgical planning, and educate medical students – and these stunning 3D visualisations have filled that need. The highly accurate models are made from combinations of clear and coloured material, reproducing anatomical models in stunning levels of detail with every bone, organ and vein visible.

The Creative Design and Additive Manufacturing Laboratory aims to significantly alter the way additive manufacturing (AM, 3D printing) is implemented in industry, changing it from a predominantly  prototyping method to a high-value manufacturing method.

The models will be of enormous benefit to the medical profession, enabling surgeons to use augmented 3D models to determine, and even practice performing specific surgeries. They have the potential to significantly improve the communications between the surgeon, their colleagues, and the patient.

TE AHI TUPUA 

Gurit Composite Engineering

The majestic spiralling sculpture Te Ahi Tupua (The Eternal Fire) is the new cultural waharoa (gateway) to the city of Rotorua. 


With design elements taken from traditional carvings, the 12m tall sculpture is made from modern materials, advanced engineering analysis and manufacturing techniques. 


Te Ahi Tupua brings to life the story of the great navigator Ngātoroirangi and portrays the Te Arawa legend of how Rotorua’s geothermal area came to be. It incorporates elements of navigation, education and the people of the area – past, present and future – leaving Rotorua with an outstanding piece of contemporary art to be enjoyed for years to come. 


Its distinctive spiralling form required an innovative construction technique – over 1,200 unique interlocking 3D printed cylinders made from polylactic acid were used. Constructed from renewable sources, including cornstarch and sugarcane, the cylinders fit together to form long-curved carbon fibre shapes. Advanced engineering analysis techniques ensure the carbon fibre laminate can withstand wind and earthquake elements.

 
Being the first of its kind meant there were many challenges to overcome. Each obstacle was tackled using innovative technology and construction solutions to bring the narrative to life. The final installation by helicopter only added to the magnitude of this project.