This year, just like in previous years, a selection of students went to the AkzoNobel plant in Delfzijl to run a mock lemonade factory. Only four CB members were allowed to go, along with members of the study associations for Industrial Engineering and Management, Chemical Engineering and Technical Management.
The day began early, with the group meeting at 8am in front of Nijenborgh 4. After driving to the plant in Delfzijl we were given a much-needed coffee and some snacks, to make sure everyone stayed awake during the safety instruction. Following this we spent a few hours getting acquainted with different problem-solving methods and the mock lemonade factory. The mock factory was very cool – essentially just a miniature version of a real lemonade plant, complete with ‘workers’ and safety procedures.
After a fantastic lunch, we began our real project. Something had gone wrong in the factory and we had to use our new-found skills and the information given to solve the problem. Finally we managed to solve the problem, although it took us almost an hour. After this difficult problem, we were taught a general procedure for shortening chemical engineering processes and then applied it to our factory in a final test. Of course there was a competitive nature to the project, and the two teams fought hard to be the best.
This competition marked the end of the bootcamp, and after a summary session and a big thank-you to AkzoNobel we left for Groningen. Overall it was an exhausting day, but we learned lots of new skills and got a better idea of problems that engineers and chemists face when working at AkzoNobel. And most importantly – it was great fun!