Siemens Software Bridges the Gap Between Industry and Academia at the University of Queensland

By Elizabeth Wise

The University of Queensland (UQ), one of Australia’s top research and teaching institutions, uses Siemens software to enhance students’ industry knowledge and prepare them for a future in the workforce. The UQ-Siemens partnership began in 2018 and has already made many advancements, including establishing an Industry 4.0 testlab network with the government and five other universities. The testlab network’s goal is to improve Australian manufacturing competitiveness by adopting Industry 4.0 technologies. 

However, what is the role of UQ students in this partnership? Many students use Siemens software in engineering curricula and research projects. Additionally, students on competition teams can team up with one of Siemens’ industry partners for unique learning experiences.

Connecting Industry and Academia via Siemens

UQ Racing and UQ Space, the university’s student competition teams, collaborated with HeliMods, an aerospace technology company and Siemens customer. HeliMods hosted industry workshops and guest lectures and even provided internship opportunities for the students. The partnership program lasted 10 weeks with the goal of teaching students how to take charge of their own learning . They also learned how to incorporate industry and software knowledge into their engineering challenges. 

James Helsham, an aerospace engineer at HeliMods, described the program as “providing industry best practice guidance on how to use Siemens software” to student competition teams. Siemens software acted as a learning tool. When the onset of the pandemic forced the program to shift online, Siemens software allowed for HeliMods to adapt quickly to a virtual teaching format. 

Students on UQ Racing and UQ Space constantly apply concepts they learned from HeliMods in their own projects. For instance, UQ Racing uses Simcenter STAR-CCM+ for aerodynamic simulations, a software that helps them not only in the classroom and at competitions but also in preparation for entering the industry.

UQ Racing and all the software we use fits perfectly with everything I do in my degree. In every course, I use Siemens software to get the best GPA possible.

William Idoine, UQ student and head of UQ Racing’s internal combustion aerodynamics team 

Using Siemens Software for University of Queensland Curricula and Research

Over 900 first-year engineering students use Simcenter STAR-CCM+ software to learn wing modeling and two-phase mixing modeling, and around 300 students in an introductory mechanical design and manufacturing course are learning NX. Students use both STAR-CCM+ and NX in more advanced engineering courses as well. Siemens’ self-paced learning platform – Xcelerator Academy – allows for students to receive extra assistance as needed. 

Additionally, UQ uses Siemens software at the business school and for Ph.D. projects. Several including advanced research with the Queensland Brain Institute and the Sustainable Minerals Institute.

Continuing to Make an Impact

The UQ-Siemens partnership has already accomplished many feats, and they are still looking to make even more advancements. Future goals are to expand the use of the Simcenter portfolio, to establish opportunities for Opcenter software for manufacturing operations management, and to adopt MindSphere industrial IoT as a service solution.

To learn more about the University of Queensland’s partnership with Siemens, check out this case study. Listen to this podcast with UQ professor Sabine Matook to how she uses Siemens software in her curriculum.

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This article first appeared on the Siemens Digital Industries Software blog at