A Loughborough University student has been recognised by the industrial gases company BOC as the best chemical engineering student of the year in the UK at a gala awards evening in London.

Simon Davies received the prize from Jim Ford, BOC's managing director, industrial and special products, at the 2005 Science, Engineering & Technology Student of the Year Awards held at The Guildhall.

The BOC sponsored award is open to chemical engineering students who are either undertaking or have completed a first degree course at a UK university and are judged by their lecturers as likely to attain a first class degree.

Simon, who has completed a MEng chemical engineering degree and is undertaking a PhD, received £500 and a trophy and £500 for Loughborough University for his work on the engineering of artificial blood for transfusions.

Commenting on the award, Jim Ford said: “The BOC award for chemical engineers continues to attract entries from the top students in the country and we have been encouraged by the creativity, technical expertise and practicality shown by all who entered.

“As an employer of highly qualified staff it is vital that BOC encourages talented students who are the scientists and engineers of the future.

“Simon’s entry was outstanding. His project and presentation to the judging panel showed him to be an ambassador for chemical engineering and a credit to the Loughborough faculty led by professor Richard Wakeman.”

Simon is the fifth recipient of the BOC sponsored award and the first Loughborough student. His entry was one of three short-listed for the award. The other short-listed candidates were Krishnaa Mahbubani of the University of Sheffield and Chia Huei Tan of Bath University.