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'Black box' for cars wins 2018 Mayor's Telstra Technology Award

August 27, 2018

All Saints Anglican School has taken out the top prize in the Mayor’s Telstra Technology Award. Three Year 11 students from the school - Jeremy Buckley, Henry Collins and Kai Barry - pitched their concept to a panel of judges as one of ten finalists in the competition.

Their device, the Autonomous Response Unit, is a small box that sits in your vehicle that automatically alerts search and rescue services in the event of a car crash. The unit doesn’t rely on mobile phone networks to send the signal so it can be detected even from the most remote locations.

The Award is now in its fifth year and the competition is open to all Gold Coast high school students from years 9 – 12. The ten finalist teams receive mentoring and undertake a series of workshops to help develop and market their concept. It is a requirement of the competition that each entry must present a technological solution to a real world problem.

The ten finalists then pitch their idea on the last night of the competition before a panel of judges and an audience that includes secret investors.

The competition sets such a high standard the entries never fail to impress the judges. Other concepts this year included a robotic tree root to prevent soil erosion (Southport State High School), a smart wardrobe app that learns what you like, tracks trends, provides advice and helps keep you organised (Merrimac State High School) and a crop seed distribution solution delivered by an autonomous fleet of micro aircraft for farmers in developing nations (Hillcrest Christian College).

The 2018 winners are:

The Mayor’s Telstra Technology Award are conducted by Study Gold Coast in partnership with Telstra, Bond University and Startup Apprentice.

Bond University academics including Transformer Director Daniel Abrahams, Associate Professor of Computer Games, Dr James Birt, and Associate Dean of External Engagement, Prof Jeffrey Brand were involved as mentors and judges throughout the competition, with Executive Dean of the Faculty of Society & Design, Professor Derek Carson, officiating at the final.