Photo: SwissTech Convention Centre
By Andreas Malekos (year 4, Computational Physics)
At the end of October 2018, I was invited to attend COMSOL’s annual conference in Lausanne, Switzerland along with two other students (Arturas Jocas from the School of Mathematics and Ivan Chan from the School of Engineering). We were invited as part of HYPED, the University of Edinburgh’s student Hyperloop team. COMSOL is a finite element analysis software that was extensively used for the designs of HYPED’s second Hyperloop prototype, PODDIE the Second. The software was used to perform structural /electromagnetic simulations and optimise various parts of the pod. We presented a poster detailing how COMSOL was used.
The conference lasted for 3 days and was located in a very modern and impressive building, the SwissTech Convention Centre. Each day, talks were given describing how COMSOL was used in
research, from curing myopia to designing Samsung’s latest living room soundbar. We had the opportunity to talk to people from various industries, from Bang and Olufsen to CERN engineers. We not only discussed how they used COMSOL in their research, but we learned more about the research itself. We even had the opportunity for a brief discussion with COMSOL’s CEO, who shared his personal story of how COMSOL came to be the company it is now. It was truly inspiring. Not only were we able to pick the brains of some of the world’s leading simulation experts, but we gained valuable links to multiple industries that could be extremely beneficial to the work done at HYPED.
Furthermore, we also had the opportunity to talk to and attend events organised by COMSOL engineers. These were extremely insightful and useful. We learned about various advanced COMSOL features and asked the engineers help with issues we were having with COMSOL, gaining solutions we never would have had the expertise or experience to implement. It also gave us the chance to see how far spread COMSOL’s use was over multiple industries; exposing jobs and opportunities in industries we’d never even thought of exploring.
At the end of the conference we were treated to a tour of CERN and the ATLAS experiment, where we discussed its various aspects with the scientist who was showing us around.
Overall this conference was an excellent experience that I will remember for a long time. From the people to the places, the problems to the solutions; the trip was worth its weight in gold.
Read more about the COMSOL conference:
Read more about HYPED: https://hyp-ed.com/