Aston University Student Reaches Finals of National Plastics Design Competition

The innovative soccer shinguard designed by Jaipreet Bahra

16th April 2010

A second year BSc (Hons) Product Design and Management student from Aston University - Jaipreet Bahra - has fought off tough opposition to become a finalist in a national plastics design competition, sponsored by international materials company, Bayer MaterialScience.

Established in 1985, Design Innovation in Plastics 2010 is the longest running student plastics design award in Europe. It is also supported by the Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining (IOM³) and The Worshipful Company of Horners, and is now run as an annual competition.

Aimed at undergraduate and postgraduate engineering and product design students from universities and colleges throughout the UK, this year’s competition was titled ‘Refreshing Design: A Novel Solution to an Existing Problem’. Students were encouraged to design a product suitable for mass production in plastics that clearly demonstrates creativity and value for money in a refreshing way.

Jaipreet Bahra designed the ‘Precision D Shin Guard’, an innovative soccer shin guard incorporating smart polymer material. The shin guard is part of a possible future range of shin protection equipment designed to counter the growing number of football injuries. It provides both protection and mobility. The base of the guard forms an innovative part of the design, giving extra protection, and another innovative feature is the provision of protection to the back of the shin.

A total of 268 students from 24 universities initially registered an interest in the competition with 72 actually submitting an entry. Following the first round of judging, the panel of judges whittled these down to just six finalists.

Stewart Potter from Bayer MaterialScience, and one of the judges, comments: “The quality of entries this year has been very good. Despite some students not including full materials selection process and costings, they have been varied and innovative.

“Jaipreet managed to interpret the brief well and we look forward to hearing his presentation and finding out more about his design at the final judging day. We fully support any initiative which allows students to think more creatively about using our materials in design applications.”

Jaipreet, plus the five other finalists, will next present their entries in person to the judging panel on 1 June, with the overall winner being announced at an awards ceremony held at the IOM³’s headquarters in London on 25 June.

First prize consists of £1,000 for the student plus a placement at Bayer MaterialScience’s global headquarters in Germany.

Second prize is £500 for the student and a placement with DuPont in Geneva.

Third prize is £250 plus a placement with PDD, a leading design and innovation consultancy based in London.


For further press information please contact Rachel Owen on (01635) 563410 or email rachel.owen.ro@bayer.co.uk.

Note to editors

  1. Bayer MaterialScience is one of the world’s largest producers of polymers and high-performance plastics. Its coatings, adhesives, insulating materials and sealants, polycarbonates and polyurethanes can be found in applications ranging from automotive, construction, electrical and electronics, household, to sports and leisure sectors. 
  2. The Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining (IOM3) was created from the merger of The Institute of Materials (IOM) and The Institution of Mining and Metallurgy (IMM), and has been joined by the Institute of Packaging. The IOM3 is the professional body for the advancement of materials, minerals and mining to governments, industry, academia, the public and the professions. 
  3. The Worshipful Company of Horners is one of the oldest livery companies in the City of London and was formed to regulate the horn working trade. In 1943 it adopted its modern equivalent, the plastics industry.