Solihull School pupils may have found the answer to the nationwide problem of beacons being stolen from roadwork barriers.
Sixth formers from the independent school have devised a special locking bracket that has so impressed National Grid that the company is looking to pilot the concept.
The energy network utility set students on the school's design and technology course the task of designing, building and testing a device that would reduce the theft of the barrier lights from sites where engineers are carrying out works.
The exercise was part of Solihull School's participation in the Engineering Education Scheme (EES), a national organisation sponsored by the Royal Academy of Engineers to encourage young people to pursue a career in engineering.
Alex Chadwick, Sam Eade, Robert Draper and Jon Wilkes produced a metal prototype of a bracket than can be fixed securely to existing barrier posts and envelop each beacon holder in such a way that thieves are unable to remove it.
They worked with three graduate trainees from the National Grid over six months in developing their ideas.
Leanne Diston, junior HR business partner from National Grid, said: "Many of these barrier beacons go missing at considerable expense. Our business improvement team were very impressed by Solihull School's efforts in tackling the issue and will hopefully be piloting their prototype in a high-risk area. If successful, it could be rolled out nationwide."
John Belcher, a design and technology teacher at Solihull School, also said: "We are delighted with our boys' success and we hope that their experience of working on a real-life engineering project will encourage them all to become professional engineers."