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YPPC 2016

The Young Persons Paper Competition 2016 Grand Final is nearly upon us. Let's meet the nine ection winners competing for that amazing trip to Gastech 2017 in Tokyo.


FEDS Section winner

Alan Ho, Technical Development Engineer, Hong Kong & China Gas Co Ltd

Alan has an MSc in Operations Management and a BEng in Mechanical Engineering. He is now a Technical Development Engineer in the distribution operation department, focusing on innovative and automated project development.

"The Design of Internal Alignment Clamp for PE Pipe Fusion"

Currently, there are some limitations when joining new polyethylene (PE) pipes in congested areas via electrofusion when using the existing strap clamp. A new piece of innovative equipment, the internal alignment clamp, has been developed to enhance gas safety and tackle these challenges.


FEDS Section runner up
Magnum Ngai Hin So, Engineer, Hong Kong & China Gas Co Ltd

Magnum has a BEng in Mechanical Engineering.  His main role is to provide technical support to gas related projects including design, structure simulation, testing documentation. Magnum is hoping to achieve Chartered status in order to develop his future career in the gas industry.

"Gas Riser Thermal Stress Analysis Program"

Magnum's paper is about the study of thermal expansion and contraction in gas risers within tall residential buildings. Software developed to analyse the cracking of gas risers under thermal force can help predict gas leakage, enhance public safety and reduce subsequent maintenance.


London, Southern and Eastern Section winner
Sam Wilson, Project Manager for Innovation and New Technology, SGN

Sam completed two advanced modern apprenticeships and a HNC in Mechanical Engineering before qualifying as a weapons technician. He managed the first field trial of the large CISBOT robotic repair system and is currently Project Manager of SGN's NIC robotics project. He is seeking to gain professional registration as an Incorporated Engineer (IEng) and eventually Chartered status with IGEM.

"Developing Robotic Remediation Techniques for Distribution Networks"

The use of robotics has been a key development in a number of industries to minimise downtime, risk, cost and drive efficiency. This paper details the benefits this type of technology could bring to gas distribution networks and the systems developed under SGN's NIC robotics project.


Midlands Section winner
Charlotte Bath, Materials Engineer, DNV GL

After graduating with a Masters in Chemistry, Charlotte is currently working as a Materials Engineer in the integrity management team at DNV GL (Oil & Gas). Day to day she works on a diverse range of projects including failure investigations and condition assessments for onshore and offshore assets.

"Microbiologically Influenced Corrosion: A Review of Modern Corrosion Investigations in the Gas Industry"

Microbiologically influenced corrosion (MIC) has been identified as one of the major causes of corrosion failures. Charlotte's review considers how modern failure investigations have developed to recognise and detect cases of MIC. The aim is to advance the understanding of MIC amongst network operators, preventing the use of costly, ineffective remediation measures.


North East and Yorkshire Section winner
Rafal Cichosz, Mechanical Engineer, Synthotech Ltd

Rafal has a Bachelors degree in Mechatronics . Since 2014, he has worked as a Mechanical Engineer in the research and development department at Synthotech Ltd in Harrogate. Here he is involved in Project GRAID and 3D printing.

"Project GRAID: Design and Development of an 'Agile' Robotic Platform for Extreme Unpiggable Pipelines"

An examination of how nature can provide excellent examples of design for performance in challenging and dynamic environments.


North West Section winner
Rob Lumb Mechanical Engineer, Synthotech Ltd

Rob has a BEng in Mechanical Engineering and joined Synthotech in 2014.  He has worked on the Tier One Replacement System project for two years as a Mechanical Design Engineer in the R&D department. He is responsible for the drive module and drill module of the robotic platform.

"Development of the Tier One Replacement System (TORS) Propulsion System"

The Tier One Replacement System is a modular robotic platform designed to make a remote service to mains connection from within polyethylene pipe inserted into a host metallic main. The drive system is a critical part of aligning the relevant tooling for the connection and this paper details the development across three phases of the iterative design process.


Scottish Section winner
Robyn Pender, Events Coordinator, SGN

Robyn has a BA (Hons) and her interests include marketing and communications, stakeholder engagement, managing and delivering events as well as having a keen interest in brand management and re-branding. Her current role is within the newly formed SGN events team, helping to deliver a range of internal and external events each year.

"LCNI Conference Case Study: Using Stakeholder Feedback to Maximise the Benefits of Annual Corporate Events"

Robyn's paper explores the rising importance of corporate events and the influence key stakeholder feedback can have in maximising benefits of attending or hosting such events. 
The paper explores key event success factors, the components that make up corporate events, why we attend and the project management process involved - from conception through to delivery and evaluation.


South West Section winner
Pippa Wrenn, Asset Officer, Wales & West Utilities

Pippa has a BE (Hons) in Chemical and Process Engineering. She worked for Powerco in the New Zealand gas industry and received Chartered status after only four years of work experience. She is currently a member of IPENZ, IGEM and NZIGE (the New Zealand branch of IGEM of which she was Secretary for over two years).

"Monetised Risk"

This paper is a first-hand account of the steps the industry has undertaken to meet Ofgem's reporting requirements around asset health and criticality indices.


Wales Section winner
David Arnold, Commercial Manager, Wales & West Utilities

David has a Master's Degree in Mechanical Engineering. He started work at Wales & West Utilities in 2009, moving from the workshops to network services, pipelines, and now to working as the Commercial Manager for Special Projects.

"Making Refurbishment Work"

In 2013, WWU adopted a refurbishment based model for maintaining the health of its gas infrastructure. This in turn has resulted in a shift in workload towards a high volume of lower value projects. This paper described the difficulties associated with delivering such a portfolio of work, and the methodology adopted to ensure successful project completion year on year.


If you want to come and support the finalists book here.


If have any questions at all or would like any more information please contact Linda Mee, YPN Secretary by emailing or calling 01509 678184

The Finalists


Alan Ho

Alan Ho


Magnum Ngai Hin So

Magnum Ngai Hin So


Sam Wilson

Sam Wilson


Charlotte Bath

Charlotte Bath


Rafal Cichosz

Rafal Cichosz


Rob Lumb

Rob Lumb


Robyn Pender

Robyn Pender


Pippa Wrenn

Pippa Wrenn


David Arnold

David Arnold


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