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  • Writer's pictureLove Ballymena

Northern Regional College hosts WorldSkills International Pressure Test

Team UK and Team Austria pictured with Christine McQuillan, VP for Teaching and Learning at Northern Regional College, Karla Kosch, College lecturer and Worldskills Training Manager and Mel Higgins, Principal and Chief Executive of Northern Regional College and Worldksills UK Trustee. 

Team UK and Team Austria pictured with Christine McQuillan, VP for Teaching and Learning at Northern Regional College, Karla Kosch, College lecturer and Worldskills Training Manager and Mel Higgins, Principal and Chief Executive of Northern Regional College and Worldksills UK Trustee. 

 

Northern Regional College had the pleasure of hosting a WorldSkills International Pressure Test (IPT) for the Robot Systems Integration Skill within the Farm Lodge campus, Ballymena.


The competition took place in the centre of the campus where visitors and students alike congregated and observed the competitors at work.



Participating in this competition were two College competitors, Jason Scott and Charlie Carson representing the UK, as well as Nico Reif and Fabian Weber representing Austria. 


This competition lasted for three days, where each team had to complete a series of tasks using the FANUC Robots available on campus. These tasks included designing the robot cell and programming online and offline the simulation of a welding application in automotive industry. The teams had to complete 3 welded components, ‘car door frames’, made of different materials and having to complete either a seam-weld or a spot-weld process, depending on the component design.



Part selection was introduced in day 3, where the task was identifying the component and applying the correct welding programmes adjusting the seam-weld speed or spot-weld pulse as per specification.


Both teams also took part in advanced robotics training delivered by international experts over two days aiming to share good practice and upskill to international standards.


Karala Kosch, College lecturer and Worldskills Training Manager chats to Northern Regional College Principal and Chief Executive Mel Higgins about the International Pressure Test competition and equipment.  Mel is also a Worldskills UK Trustee.

Karala Kosch, College lecturer and Worldskills Training Manager chats to Northern Regional College Principal and Chief Executive Mel Higgins about the International Pressure Test competition and equipment.  Mel is also a Worldskills UK Trustee.


This year, the WorldSkills competition will take place in Lyon, France in September 2024. Team UK selected to represent the country will prove their skills and knowledge against the other teams, part of the 18 international countries participating in WorldSkills – Austria is a strong contender in the Robotics skill.


Mel Higgins, Principal & Chief Executive of Northern Regional College and WorldSkills UK Trustee said:


“We were delighted to welcome WorldSkills competitors from Austria to the College to compete in the International Pressure Test. 


“This event provided an excellent opportunity for competitors to develop their skills and knowledge in Robot Systems Integration to an international standard. I thoroughly enjoyed watching both teams display their technical skills and was impressed by the level of competition.”



Commenting at the event Karla Kosch, College Lecturer and Training Manager in Robot Systems Integration said:


“This is a great achievement for our Foundation Degree full-time students reaching the international level and having the opportunity to train and compete at the highest standards in the world, having the honour to represent UK in Robot Systems Integration. During the week there were chances of international skill and knowledge exchange to raise the level of standards and sharing good practice implemented in industry.”



Experts Karla Kosch (UK), Patrick Kügerl (AT), past international competitors Adam Kirkpatrick and Cameron Middleton, technical sales support engineer Fanuc UK Ltd., Daniel Dunn, and Ronan Rasdale, sales manager from Fanuc IE Ltd. and college technicians Dominic O’Hagan and Richard Thompson made up the two judging teams and provided support throughout the competition.  

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