Knowledge Based Engineering Competition 2020

The Challenge

Every year since 2017 ParaPy has hosted the Knowledge Based Engineering (KBE) Challenge. The four best student teams from Gianfranco la Rocca’s KBE class at TU Delft are invited to compete for the first place and obtain the title of KBE Challenge winner. They pitch and present their parametric design application that they created with our ParaPy platform. Each team made an application about the topic of their choice and even have the opportunity to collaborate with big names in the industry to gather input. This year’s challenge was particularly diverse with applications covering four different sectors: aerospace, wind energy, maritime, and offshore. We gave the students the additional challenge to, in one week, create a WebGUI version of their desktop-based apps using our recently released WebGUI package. At the event, the students pitched, their application idea, demonstrated the web-based app, and answered questions by a panel of experts from industry, R&D, and academia. 

KBE course guest lecture 

KBE 2020

Every year we receive top-notch students from TU Delft and this year was no different. Four teams presented their ideas and left us impressed by their parametric design capabilities. This year the challenge was different from others because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Thus, we made arrangements to contact contestants remotely and to ensure the COVID-19 restrictions in the Netherlands were followed. 

The jury consisted of:

Tim van Wageningen

Engineering Manager KBE Group


Max du Bois

Naval Architect

Royal Huisman

Floris Bremmers

R&D Engineer


Gianfranco La Rocca

Assistant Professor

Delft University of Technology

Imco van Gent

Software Engineer

ParaPy BV

Our contestants and their pitches were:

HullEasy – Julien Oiknine & Friso Topper

Julien and Friso presented a solution to help engineers design their aluminum sailboat hull structure. After inputting the hull shape in the application, the user can easily set the number and position of the different structural elements, such as web frames, longitudinals, bulkheads. HullEasy computes the scantling section modulus for each component and provides the user with graphical information on whether the components verify the DNVGL’s scantling rules.

The user can then adapt the scantling to comply with the rules. HullEasy can output a bill of material for the hull, a price estimation, the C.G position as well as STEP files of the web frames to use in CNC machines.

Twist – Emiel de Boer & Casper Klop

Twist provides users with an informed recommendation on the feasibility of the installment of a small to medium scale wind turbine, based on the local wind distribution and the amount of energy a community requires.

Based on aerodynamic and electromechanical analysis it will provide an integrated wind turbine design with an initial rotor and generator model.

Turbine design with a twist!



Swing-it – Joris de Bont & Elja Ebbens

Joris and Elja presented Swing-it, which makes conceptual design for commercial swing-wing aircraft easy. Swing-it performs a full class 2 weight estimation, making sure to size the horizontal tail surface to its required size. The required size is determined by calculating its stability requirements at the extreme swing angles.

After the initial setup, quick adjustment can be made to visualize different swing angles and other settings or even re-generate the aircraft for different mission parameters. The aerodynamic performance is also analyzed, to give an estimate of the aircraft’s real-life performance.

Container seafastening app – Costijn de Priester & Bastiaan Koot

Costijn and Bastiaan presented an app that seeks to reduce the time needed to calculate the positioning of a container on a vessel’s deck. The user provides the app with the boundary conditions, such as a load case, deck configuration, and available deck space. The app will return the most efficient location to place the container and designs a so-called spreaderbeam which distributes the container loads to the deck elements. Using FEM and other structural analyses, the beam can be designed in such a way that the stresses in the beam itself and in the deck are within bounds. Using these techniques, the app finds the optimal spreaderbeam and container location for the job.


Container Seafastening App

And the winner is…

Ultimately, Costijn de Priester & Bastiaan Koot took the 1st prize home with their Container Seafastening app. They impressed the judges with their thorough understanding of the principles of KBE and the opportunities ParaPy unlocks for an offshore engineering firm. Furthermore, they were able to translate their knowledge and skills into a well-scoped app that is nearly ready for use in industry and provides valuable automated PDF output. Congratulations Costijn and Bastiaan!

Opportunity for businesses

We are looking forward to hosting next year’s KBE Challenge again. If you believe your company can benefit from a design application prototype create by some of the world’s youngest and brightest minds, please contact us and we can help you connect with students and take your first steps into your design automation journey with ParaPy.


  • cool!


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