Engineering the future of air travel

08 Feb, 2022

Technical skills are only one part of the job for software engineers, which is why students on AUT’s four-year degree programme spend hundreds of hours working with industry to develop solutions to real problems.

Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) student Grace Subianto says alongside software development, coding and design, the degree has helped her develop critical skills such as project management, collaboration and communication.

“These skills are really important when you’re heading into a software engineering career where you will have to work with lots of different stakeholders.”

For her fourth-year industry project, Grace had the opportunity to work with aviation and intralogistics solutions company Daifuku Oceania, part of the Daifuku Group which employs 9500 people around the world.

Working in a team with three other software engineering students, Grace helped build a simulation of the passenger flow inside an airport to accommodate new COVID-19 restrictions and requirements.

“Our simulation was designed to capture the entire passenger experience, from queueing for check-in right up to the boarding gate, and the focus was on finding the most efficient solution for all stages of the process.

“We’re following an agile scrum methodology to complete the project, and I’ve really enjoyed the experience of learning to create and manage a project from scratch.”

Feedback from Daifuku Oceania’s Executive GM Software, Thibaut Caplain, was that the students’ work represented ‘clear progress’ for the company and the business would apply it in the future.

Associate Professor Roopak Sinha, who heads AUT’s Computer Science and Software Engineering Department, says giving students the opportunity to apply their capabilities in an industrial setting is an invaluable learning experience.

“Aside from learning the rhythms and processes involved in delivering high-quality projects on time, students often find new and better ways to solve problems for industry, based on the state-of-the-art research-informed learnings from their studies at AUT.”

Other companies that AUT fourth-year software engineering students have been able to work with include RUSH Digital, JB Connect, Osborne Software and EyeGate.

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