Chemical Engineering Students Champion at the Innovative Simulation Challenge (INNOSIM) 2023


The Innovation and Entrepreneurship Centre congratulates team XCRACK, comprising a group of exceptional undergraduates from Chemical Engineering programme - Said Ismail Amer Aref Yaser, Poi Jin Voon, Yeow Teck Ann, Ee Lok Han, and Lim Jing Bei - for triumphing as champion of the Innovative Simulation Challenge (INNOSIM) 2023.

Hosted by Universiti Teknologi Petronas (UTP) from 23-24 August 2023, the INNOSIM 2023 is a national-level process simulation competition held as part of the Engineering, Science, and Technology Challenge (ESTECH) 2023. With the central theme Greening the Petrochemical Industry: Innovating Sustainable Processes for a Better Future, the competition focuses on creating sustainable processes aligned with Sustainable Development Goal 9: Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure. 

The case study for INNOSIM 2023 is provided by Schlumberger Limited (SLB), where the participants were asked to prepare a comprehensive report and presentation and to provide a solution to Green Steam Cracking Furnaces by proposing and simulating two green hydrogen technologies along with the simulation of the base-case, hydrogen-based and electricity-based naphtha steam cracking furnaces. They were also required to provide the technology comparison, economic analysis, environmental impact assessment, infrastructure requirements, and recommendations for stakeholders and decision-makers.

Competing on a national scale against teams from various universities across Malaysia, team XCRACK, supervised by Dr. Noraini binti Mohd and supported by Dr. Lam Weng Hoong, emerged as the Champion of the competition and was awarded with a prize of RM 5,000.

Team XCRACK has presented their proposal and simulations of two green production technologies which are the co-gasification of palm oil empty fruit bunches and mesocarp fibers and Sulfur-Iodine thermochemical cycle (SITC). Moreover, the team has provided their simulation results for the base-case, hydrogen-based, and electricity-based naphtha steam cracking furnaces with a comprehensive analysis. The work was reviewed by experienced judges from both academics and industry.

Said Ismail Amer Aref Yaser, the leader of Team XCRACK, shared his pride in the team's remarkable accomplishment: Our victory is a testament to the synergy, dedication, and innovative spirit that defines our team. The competition provided an extraordinary platform to showcase our skills and ideas, and we are grateful for the opportunity. 

"During the preparation, we met with our supervisors four or five days a week to discuss how to move the project forward," Said recalls, "The organizer asked all the teams to record videos and upload them to YouTube, presenting their scenarios and simulation results, from which the top ten teams were selected to present again."

To perfect the presentation, Team XCRACK often stayed up late for the case studies. In addition to the theory part, they needed to conduct simulations with software, which needed to be readjusted once the results were wrong and unworkable.

"In the final stage, we spent at least four hours a day on discussions and simulations, with our supervisors joining us, and everyone is highly concentrated."


Team XCRACK and their advisor Dr. Noraini binti Mohd received the champion's cheque from Prof. Dr Nor Hisham bin Hamid, Deputy Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs of UTP

Said and his teammates expressed their gratitude: This win reflects the commitment of our university to nurturing talent and promoting excellence in engineering. As we celebrate this triumph, we are inspired to continue our journey of pushing boundaries and making a lasting impact in the world of technology and innovation."

Said Ismail Amer Aref Yaser

Poi Jin Voon

Yeow Teck Ann

Lim Jing Bei

Ee Lok Han

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