Exploring The Arctic Announces Its Winners

Exploring The Arctic Announces Its Winners

Andrey Sakharov

The contest of students' project ideas Exploring the Arctic has entered its home stretch at M.V. Lomonosov Northern (Arctic) Federal University, having announced its winners as part of the All-Russian Research to Practice Conference “The Arctic as a National Mega-Project: staffing and research support solutions”.

As a reminder, this has been the third year that NArFU holds the contest, with the support from the RF Security Council, NOVATEK and the Government of Arkhangelsk Region. The submitted project ideas pertained to the realms of human comfort and safety in the Arctic; равлениям: engineering solutions for the Arctic (mining, bioresource production, transport and logistics); environmental protection and rare flora and fauna species conservation; and protection of the Arctic cultural heritage.

There has been submitted a total of 93 project ideas from students in 35 universities in 20 Russian regions. Out of these 93, only 12 were shortlisted. The members of the jury included NArFU Rector’s Assistant Evgeniy Mikhailovsky; Alfred Wegener Institute Centre for Polar and Marine Research Frank Günther (Germany); Advisor to Arkhangelsk Governor on Arctic Issues Lev Levit; Vice-President of Association of Indigenous Peoples of the North, Siberia and the Far East Yuriy Khazanteisky; Assistant Secretary of the RF Security Council Evgeniy Lukyanov; NOVATEK’s Director for Personnel Training and Development Ilona Khruscheva; Deputy Chairman of RAS Kola Research Centre Vladimir Masloboyev; Director of NArFU Arctic Centre for Strategic Research Konstantin Zaikov; and Adviser with the Nord University Graduate School of Business Andrey Kazakov.

The final stage of the contest was entered by three NArFU students, among others. The idea presented by Alexey Grigorishchin focused on beautification of the settlement of Solovetsky (the Solovetsky Archipelago) and how its local community could be involved in territorial public self-government for gaining the support through dedicated region-level programmes. Alexey has a plan for motivate this insular community toward better self-organization.

Another NArFU student – a native of Turkmenistan Dilmurad Yakhyaev – shared his vision of how the testing ground on the Solovetsky Islands could be cleaned up. His scenario involves purchasing a pressing plant and leasing of a dry cargo vessel for transporting the pressed rubbish to the town of Kem’ (Republic of Karelia). According to Dilmurad, the design of his project would also meet Kem’s need in feedstock, as this town is planning to build a waste recycling plant. 

An out-of-the-box idea was presented by NArFU’s 4-year student Alexey Usov – “The Arctic Through The Looking-Glass”, a educational ‘virtual novel’ computer game for kids (we used its visual image as photo to this article). The detailed design of the game is yet to be developed and its author is looking for enthusiastically minded partners to turn his idea into a media product.  

Finally, the project by Grigorishchin won the second prize, and cash award, as second-best ‘Human Comfort and Safety in the Arctic’ project. The third prize in this portfolio went to MSU PhD student Alexey Maslakov for his monitoring of Chukotka permafrost melt (degradation), an idea seeking benefit for the indigenous community, and the first prize – to the team of Vologda State University, represented by Anna Sizanova, for their design of ‘face and breathing protection mask’. Tested in the Arctic environment, this product has already won several expo awards.

Dilmurad Yakhyaev was chosen as the first-prize winner in ‘Environmental Protection…’. The second prize in this area went to master’s student of the National Research University of Technology “Moscow Institute of Steel and Alloys” (Moscow) Alexandra Lipina for her ground stability e-monitoring project that makes use of dedicated sensors to track the activity of the phenomena such as mudflows and landslides within combined natural and man-made entities. Alexandra said her e-monitoring design can be adjusted to the setting of any area.

The third prize went to research officer at the RAS Federal Centre for Integrated Research of the Arctic Ekaterina Pinaevskaya – for simulating the climate change processes affecting the sub-tundra forests in the European North of Russia, a model relying on the results of the pine species tree-ring analysis.

The project by Alexey was named as the best ‘Arctic Heritage Preservation’ idea. The second prize in this portfolio went to student of A.I. Herzen Russian State Teacher Training University (Saint-Petersburg) Maxim Nyach, a native of Yamal-Nenets Autonomous District Санкт-Петербурга) – for his “Northern Spartakiada”, a idea for a contest among the indigenous minorities of Northern Russia. The third prize was awarded to PhD student at Petrozavodsk State University Natalia Kuznetsova who has, for 9 years, been developing the contents of an educational web resource named “The Religion of the Arctic Old Believers: yesterday, today, tomorrow”.

Vladimir Kopyrin, a PhD student of Tyumen Industrial University, holds the title of the best ‘Engineering Solutions for the Arctic’ project developer. His design of an energy-efficient submersible Arctic offshore oil producing platform qualifies as enabling to minimize electric energy loss and has been highly praised by independent experts. Vladimir said he had already found a company which is ready to materialize his design. The second prize in this portfolio went to student of I.M. Gubkin Russian State University Maxim Filippov – for his achievements in developing the smart risk management software applications for designing producing facilities in the Arctic. Master’s student of N.E. Bauman Moscow State University Ivan Remizov was awarded with the third prize – for his remotely controlled unmanned underwater vehicle designed to do inspection at depths of 100 m. Small-sized, this vehicle uses a shaftless propeller and is an original development.

At the award ceremony – hosted by Intellectual Resources Center – E.I. Ovsyankin Library – NArFU Rector Elena Kudryashova has expressed her gratitude to NOVATEK for successful cooperation. On behalf of the contestants, Maxim Filippov has thanked NArFU for the quality organization of the contest and the jury for their valuable advice.  

We do see the support the Russian science receives from you and we appreciate your input, said Maxim Filippov. 

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