In December, the Mechanical and Industrial Engineering (MIE) Department held its annual Fall Design Showcase, a competition among 18 inventive student teams working diligently to develop a wide range of topical innovations. Projects ranged from smart manufacturing and integrated recycling to automated fishing, power-generating systems based on body heat, wind, or waves, and much more.
This fall the MIE’s Design Showcase featured two categories of winners: semester-long projects and year-long projects.
The first-place winner for the semester-long projects is Team 1503: Design and Optimization of FSAE Vehicle Steering System, made up of Abhishek Ravi, Vineeth Rao, Dylan Logan, Timothy Burns, and Adam Kelliher, who have designed and optimized a new steering system for the UMass entry in the annual Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) Vehicle Competition.
The team’s plan is to fabricate this steering mechanism and use it in the UMass formula SAE vehicle in years going forward. As the team members say, “We are looking forward to the use of our steering rack in the 2023 FSAE competition, the first for the Minuteman Racing Team.”
Team 1503: Design and Optimization of FSAE Vehicle Steering System
In second place for the semester-long group is a design that will actually feed into a year-long project to support research at the university’s Human Robotic Systems Laboratory and the Integrative Locomotion Laboratory. Team 1509: Dual Track Treadmill is made up of Kyle O'Connell, Onur Bulut, Emily Brann, Timothy Chu, Deanna Conti, and Maria Hernandez.
The team is designing a treadmill system to study how humans manage physical interaction with the ground, thus aiding research that will inform the development of new approaches to gait rehabilitation.
Team 1509: Dual Track Treadmill
In the third-place spot is Team 1501: Thermoelectric Generator Vest. The team of Mischa deRuijter, Tom Mazeika, Cam Greiner, and Gabriel Nadelstein is developing a device that effectively generates power from the user’s body heat, accomplished by using several thermoelectric generators integrated throughout a compression vest, which can then generate power via the temperature difference between the human body and ambient air.
Team 1501: Thermoelectric Generator Vest
The second category of awards was applied to year-long projects.
The first-place winner in this category is Team 9708: YCC Collaborative Robots for Manufacturing, an industrially sponsored project working on optimizing robotic systems for the Yankee Candle Company. This team is composed of Jenny Andrews, Patrick Archibald, Enzo Croghan, Sidney Holman, and Kat Pacheco.
The main goal of this project is to create an automated system to prepare multi-wick candle jars for wax pouring. The team is working on different subsets systems working in concert in order for wicks to be untangled, held in place while the wax is being poured, and manipulated by a collaborative robot.
Team 9708: YCC Collaborative Robots for Manufacturing
The second-place team is Team 9703: Pilot Process Augmented Reality Application, composed of Nicholas Dariotis, Cameron Lake, Chiemeligo Onyemelukwe, David Shlimak, and Dillan Wilson. They are designing an augmented reality application that provides information about the “smart pilot process” for teaching machine operators, engineers, and technicians how to use machines in a manufacturing system. For the smart pilot process, the application will provide an immersive training experience that will allow people from varying technical backgrounds to understand the machinery.
Team 9703: Pilot Process Augmented Reality Application
The third-place winner in this category is Team 9706: Quabbin Wire Tension Monitoring System. The industrially sponsored team of Paul Karam, Gabe Noble Shriver, Patrick O'Brien, Brian Peoples, and Jake Thompson is concerned with the design and fabrication of a repeatable, pulsing-reducing, cost-effective, and operator-friendly “tension-rendering system” that will utilize a displacement sensor to track vibrations in a cable as it is moved off a reel and onto a payoff machine for twisting and stranding.
Team 9706: Quabbin Wire Tension Monitoring System