SCOTT Koppelhueber does not appear in his school’s year 12 group photo.
On the day the picture was taken, he was sleeping after spending 85 hours non stop on his Design and Technology major work, a collapsible wingsail to help competitive sailors improve the speed of their dinghy class boats.
“I was working on it the whole year and had most of the project done at that stage,” he said. “It was not like I was leaving it to the last minute, but everything left to do was all coming together at once.
“I just get so into it, I get so focused on a project that nothing else matters.”
The former Macquarie College student’s decision to devote 1000 hours to his project has paid off, after he was named as one of 25 from across the NSW to have their work selected for the inaugural HSC Shape exhibition, which is showing at the Powerhouse Museum to May 8.
It comprises the best inventions and designs from 2015 HSC Design and Technology, Industrial Technology and Textiles and Design courses.
Scott, 18, also received two awards, for his exemplary use of resources as well as demonstrating the best understanding of potential commercialisation and intellectual property protection.
“I was overwhelmed,” he said. “I did not believe it was happening, I was stunned.
“From the day I started the project it was my goal to get into this exhibition.”
Scott, who sails with Toronto Amateur Sailing Club and has competed at a national level, said he was interested in collapsible wingsails because they allowed sailors to improve their speeds.
He said single element sails were usually dismantled and transported in parts in shipping containers on trucks and could take more than a week to reassemble.
Scott’s dual element wingsail collapses to a quarter of its size in less than 45 minutes and can increase speed by up to 60 per cent, compared to a traditional sail.
Scott also studied Visual Arts and his paintings were selected for ARTEXPRESS.
He will move to Sydney on Monday to start a Bachelor of Arts (Screen) at the Australian Film Television and Radio School. He is hoping for a multifaceted career.