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Environmental Engineering Capstone Design Team Wins Best Presentation in the SWANA International Design Competition

May 10, 2022

A team of four Environmental Engineering students, Hope Owens, Nina Del Rio, Derek Kosydar, and Ryan Fisher, took home the Best Presentation award and second prize overall in the Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA) International Design Competition.

The team of undergraduate students competed against teams from other universities, including those with MS and PhD students. There were 8 teams who started the competition and five who finished all their deliverables. The 2nd place award includes a $2000 prize and the best presentation award is $500.

The design challenge was to evaluate the US Environmental Protection Agency’s LandGEM model for calculating methane emissions from landfills. The Clemson team chose to recreate the LandGEM model in the Python programing language, then modify the model to improve its performance. Their final report can be accessed here and their presentation is here.

Judges appreciated that the presentation was well paced, well spoken, and everyone contributed. The presentation was recorded and the students added extra post-processing detail that the judges appreciated. They also commented that the final report was in-depth and textbook quality.

Congratulations to Hope, Nina, Derek, and Ryan for all their work on their Capstone Design project and their successful entry in the SWANA competition.