September 10, 2023 (6:56 PM)

2 min read


In Nickel Asia Corporation’s first-ever sustainability contest, 4th-year Aerospace Engineering students from the AdDU School of Engineering and Architecture were among the 15 finalists awarded a grant to implement their proposal last August 31, 2023, at Seda Hotel, BGC, Taguig.

Photo courtesy of Nickel Asia Corporation

From Left to Right – Chang Hyun Park, Xiemes Jaerica Jullienne Ofamin, Dr. Mark Anthony Rotor, Ma. Alyza Rovyn De Guzman, Angelo Ryan Dolina.

The Ateneo de Davao University (AdDU) Aerospace Engineering students were awarded a 100k pesos research grant by Nickel Asia Corporation (NAC) for their drone innovation.

The research team members included Aerospace Engineering students Chang Hyun Park (BS AsE 3), Xiemes Jaerica Jullienne Ofamin (BS AsE 4), Ma. Alyza Rovyn De Guzman (BS AsE 4), and Angelo Ryan Dolina (BS AsE 3). Together with them was their mentor, Dr. Mark Anthony Rotor. 

Their study is entitled Aerial Reconnaissance Utilizing UAV With GNSS-RTK for Computer Vision-Based Analysis of Concrete Crackswe. This undergraduate thesis aims to reduce the incidence of critical infrastructure issues in hard-to-reach areas (e.g., building facades) by early mitigation. 

“Basically, we aim to develop a hexacopter drone or UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle) that will scan and take high-resolution images of building facades with cracks, with the aim to conduct AI-assisted crack analysis,” Ofamin said. 

“Ideally, it will detect the said cracks, measure its width, and localize it through a GPS position correction technique – which are essential data in identifying early signs of structural issues.”’

The researchers drew inspiration from Davao City’s frequent seismic activity, which causes crack propagation.

“By acquiring the aforementioned critical data, structural engineers are given earlier insights on the structural conditions of the buildings without the need for extensive measures,” de Guzman said.

With this, the funding will aid in finalizing the proposal, developing the drone, and conducting the data collection.

“We are given until July 2024 to complete our research experiments and submit the final research outputs in time for the final presentation and awarding ceremonies during the NAC Sustainability Fair in 2024,” Dolina said.

Bringing pride to their fairly new department, Park said they hope to inspire others with their passion and love for what they do. 

“For our aerospace engineering department, despite being new and only having 2 batches of graduates, we were able to leave a mark on a national level,” he said.

The Sustainability Contest was held at the Seda Hotel, BGC, Taguig, last August 31.

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