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Triumphant Universiti Sains Malaysia Team Becomes Pioneer Winners With RM 10,000 To Realize Recycle-To-Revive Project In ATLAS Vending Greenovate My Campus Contest!

ATLAS Vending organized this event mainly to build environmental awareness among students staying on their university campuses and as an initiative towards the Earth Hour campaign, which helps contribute to a better, greener and sustainable future. This competition was open to all university students from public and private universities, specifically undergraduate students from all over Malaysia. The theme of the proposal in this competition should focus on ‘How to make your campus more sustainable’. To make this ATLAS Greenovate My Campus Contest 2023 more attractive to its participants, ATLAS Vending provided RM 10,000 fund to the best proposal. The fund is for materializing the chosen sustainable concept and implementing the proposed sustainable solution in real-life applications.

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This is the first time this ‘ATLAS Greenovate My Campus Contest 2023’ is being organized by ATLAS Vending. Although this is a pioneer competition organized by ATLAS Vending, there was a total of twenty-seven teams from all over Malaysia which participated in this competition. For the initial round of the competition, a proposal in PowerPoint slides format with a 1-minute summary video of the proposal was submitted to the Facebook page of ‘ATLAS Vending’. Then, out of the twenty-seven participating teams, five teams were shortlisted as finalists, and they were required to answer several questions for clarification about their proposal for the organizer to proceed to select the winner of this competition.

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Although there was tough competition among the participating teams, the Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) team emerged as the competition winner. The proposed solution by the team from USM in this competition is known as Recycle-to-Revive project (RtoR), whereby the concept of the most cost and material-efficient reverse vending machine (RVM) compared to available RVM in the world will be incorporated with the existing ATLAS Vending Machine that can be found abundantly in most of the university campuses and other places throughout Malaysia. 

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Through the realization of this proposed initiative in the university campuses, the waste generated in the form of aluminium cans and PET plastic bottles can be recycled using the recycling compartment attached to the side of the ATLAS Vending Machine, which eases the public in waste recycling and motivates them to do so more often. The main component of the proposed innovative sustainable idea is that the recycling compartment to be built in the ATLAS Vending Machine will help in creating awareness among students on the university campus to be more sustainable and be responsible for making the campus environment cleaner and greener while also making the recycling more accessible and easier to them. With being the competition winner, the USM team is currently working on manufacturing the proposed machine in the RtoR project with ATLAS Vending, as this first model constructed will be subsequently implemented in the form of real-life usage in the USM campus. The USM team is looking forward to making the sustainable idea of this RtoR project through the manufacturing of the proposed machine, followed by a pilot test run before it is widely used not only on the USM campus but also throughout Malaysia in the future to create a sustainable and greener environment for the betterment of nature in the upcoming years.

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The USM team of the RtoR project, the pioneer winner of this first-ever competition organized by ATLAS Vending, is led by Bol Ram, a final-year undergraduate student from the School of Chemical Engineering. The other key members of this great team are Aravind Karupaiah A/L Muthuraman and Koginishan A/L Mani Segaran, and both are final year undergraduate students from the School of Chemical Engineering and Guneswaren A/L Subramani, who is also a final year undergraduate student but from the School of Materials and Mineral Resources Engineering. This team comprises outstanding leadership and technical/soft skills, good electronics and mechanical systems knowledge, a focused mind on sustainability and engineering principles, a business mindset, and responsibility to society and the environment. This team will continue to work diligently in this RtoR project in collaboration with ATLAS Vending organization to make the project initiative a reality in an effort to make the campus environment cleaner, greener and more sustainable in the future.

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Text by: Koginishan A/L Mani Segaran
Photos by: Guneswaren A/L Subramani & ATLAS Vending