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Alumni Photography Competition at the Department of Engineering 2007

The winning photo

Bricks Chas Pope

The basic building blocks: piles of bricks can be found everywhere on Chinese construction site, some neatly arranged, others veering off at unlikely angles like a half-finished game of Jenga.
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Highly commended entries

The coast of Peru from the Space Shuttle Discovery Nicholas Patrick
'The coast of Peru from the Space Shuttle Discovery'

This is perhaps my favourite "out-of-the-window" shot... I took it through one of Discovery's aft windows. It's a shot of the coast of Peru. It includes the famous Nazca lines, though they're too small to be seen here.
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Construction skyline Chas Pope
'Construction skyline'

A row of colourful tower cranes is used to construct the new CCTV Tower in Beijing. The gravity-defying structure, designed by architect Rem Koolhaas with engineers Arup, consists of two 50-storey towers each sloping at ten degrees, joined by a 15-storey cantilevering link raised 36 storeys in the air. These cranes are required to carry up to 80 tonnes of steel in one lift, and must slew sideways once the tower has reached a certain height in order to ensure that they can continue to reach all corners of the constantly ‘moving’ floorplate. (This image was heavily saturated to create this effect).
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Shadows Nicholas Taylor

Observers waiting for the first flooding of a casting basin in Mexico containing 2 concrete caisson structures. Self-portrait, I'm third from left. Cropped and un-edited. Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico. 2006
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Other entries

MiG-25 at 80,000 Simon Ward
MiG-25 at 80,000’

The photo shows me flying in a MiG-25, at 80,000’. reflected in my visor, you can see the earth’s atmosphere and the blackness of space. for the full story, check my webpage: it’s a single, unaltered image, just as it came out of my camera (which, incidentally, you can see reflected in my visor too).
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Entangled Gibraltar Nicholas Taylor
'Entangled Gibraltar'

Razor wire specified by me to surround a site in southern Spain. Cropped and tone adjusted. Gibraltar in the background. Algeciras, Spain
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Advanced Communication Theory Richard Hopkirk
'Advanced Communication Theory'

This photo is of Richard Ford, who completed his PhD at the Department in 2002, hard at work at the McLaren F1 car test in Jerez, Spain. He's working on the laptop in the garage analysing live data from the cars as they circulate the track (this data is transmitted back to the pits in real time). He uses this data to spot problems in car operation, and help set up the car's various control systems (for which he is responsible at the track), including gearshift, differential locking, traction control, and many more systems besides. He has two sets of headphones in order to monitor two separate radio channels (referring to the two cars we are running) as at the time all of our double-channel units were in use by other people. And at the same time he has come up with a novel solution to speak to the factory in Woking on his mobile phone. Photographer Richard Hopkirk (Graduated from the Department of Engineering MEng 2001)
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Silent Observer Nicholas Taylor
'Silent Observer'

Sea gull watching over fitting out of a caisson. Un-edited. Ensenada, Baja California. 2007
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After the rain Chas Pope
'After the rain'

Mud and construction go hand-in-hand. A building site in Beijing's Central Business district tries to dry out after heavy summer rainfall.
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Reach Nicholas Taylor

Inspection of a concrete caisson prior to floating out from a casting basin in Mexico. Un-edited. Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico. 2007
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Blue sky bird's nest Chas Pope
'Blue sky bird's nest'

The Beijing National Stadium, otherwise known as the “Bird’s Nest” is on target to be completed well before the Olympic Games in August 2008. As engineers, Arup had to make structural sense out of the “random” concept developed by the Swiss architecture firm Herzog and De Meuron. The result is a regular series of 24 interwoven trusses spanning across the stadium, which are disguised by secondary elements arranged in a chaotic manner to create the desired effect. It has already become a popular Beijing icon.
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Craning my neck Chas Pope
'Craning my neck'

Looking straight up at one of the cranes used to construct the roof of Beijing’s Olympic Stadium. This crane is one of the largest in China, and can lift around 700 tonnes, roughly equivalent to four Boeing 747 airliners.
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Scaffold Silhouette Chas Pope
'Scaffold Silhouette'

Scaffolders construct a new office tower in Beijing’s new Central Business District, in scenes reminiscent of 1930s Manhattan.
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Waste Nicholas Taylor

Waste metal wire at a construction site in Mexico. Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico. Un-edited. 2007.
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© Copyright notice
You may copy an image from the alumni photography competition, reproduce it, and distribute it, but only if you clearly attribute the image to the person who took the photograph, state that they are an alumnus of the Department of Engineering at the University of Cambridge. It would also be courteous to provide a links to We would be delighted to hear where the images have been used. Please contact to let us know.

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