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Mechanical Engineering - 2020 Senior Design Abstracts

  • 501: Powder Recovery for Metal Additive Manufacturing
  • 502: Retractable Storage Rack for Inert Atmosphere Glove Box
  • 503: Psyche Mission - Cobalt Class Robotic Explorer for Hypothesized Surfaces
  • 504: Dual-Shell Football Helmet
  • 505: Pop-Up Classroom
  • 506: MeWee Table
  • 507: Cummins Drone Delivery
  • 508: Structural and Thermal Management of an Automotive Battery
  • 509: Environment-Controlled Test Stand Chamber
  • 510: Climatic Camera
  • 511: FAMU-FSU Parade Float
  • 512: Temperature-Sensitive Medication Storage During Natural Disasters
  • 513: SAE Aero Design Competition
  • 514: Human Exploration Rover Challenge
  • 515: Deployable Station Structure for Reconfigurable Trainer
  • 516: LSS Assembly Tool
  • 517: Science Sample Retrieval
  • 518: Lightweight UAV
  • 519: Composite Air Frame Life Extension
  • 520: Assembly Line Trainer
  • 521: Demand Reduction for FSU Central Utility Plant
  • 522: Tactile Virtual Camera Controller for Film Production
  • 523: Device to Help Stop Human Trafficking
  • 524: A/C Preference Trouble Shooting Device

Team 512 | Temperature-Sensitive Medication Storage During Natural Disasters
Temperature-Sensitive Medication Storage During Natural Disasters

The damage from natural disasters, such as hurricanes, can impact lives long after the storm has passed. Families rebuilding after a storm should not need to worry about having their lifesaving medication. Medical organizations have found the lack of refrigeration to keep insulin, and other medicine, cool as a leading cause of death following hurricanes. Therefore, we developed a cooling system for these medications without grid power.

To keep these medications usable, they need to be between 2°C - 8°C according to their storage instructions. An everyday cooler can meet this range, but only for a few hours without an added cooling source. A generator or extremely large battery could power a refrigerator but would not be practical for the public. Thus, because of the lack of a grid power, using the least power is just as crucial as cooling. With this in mind, we found that a thermoelectric unit (TEC) is the best way to keep the internal temperature of the cooler in the goal range. A mix of batteries and solar energy powers our TEC. This will keep the medicine in range until power returns. 

After trying many ideas, our final design uses a simple cooler body with an attached TEC unit, added insulation, and three airtight locking drawers. These drawers both protect and contain each vial separately within the cooler. Our design gives the user peace of mind in times of a natural disaster. It not only spares users the cost of replacing medicine, but also prevents medical emergencies, and save lives.

Team (L to R):
Timothy Willms (ME), Matthew Israel (ME), Jesse Arrington (ME), Tyler White (ME) & Christian Torpey (ME)
Ali Yousuf, Ph.D.
FAMU-FSU Engineering
Team 501 | Powder Recovery for Metal Additive Manufacturing
Powder Recovery for Metal Additive Manufacturing

The Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) at Eglin Air Force Base uses a metal 3D printer to make parts. This printer uses a laser to fuse metal powder together to form desired shapes. This leaves some unfused metal powder trapped inside cavities in the part. Any remaining powder is waste because of contamination after the part is taken out of the printer. The lab is tasking us with creating a device to help remove the unfused powder from the part. This recovered powder should be captured and stored for reuse. 

Knowing how to best handle metal powder is key to this project’s success. The metal powder at AFRL has individual pieces that are about 10 times smaller than the thickness of a standard piece of paper. The powder particles easily catch on the surface and corners of the printed part. The powder must always be isolated because of safety concerns. Airborne powder can catch on fire and is dangerous to inhale.

Our system vibrates the part upside-down to remove powder. This powder falls and is funneled into a storage container. To account for the dangers of small metal powder, our vibrating system is placed inside a sand blasting cabinet. These cabinets already meet AFRL’s safety standards. The designed system proves to be effective in recovering additional powder.

Team (L to R):
Arlan Ohrt (ME), Noah Tipton (ME), Vincent Giannetti (ME), Joshua Dorfman (ME) & Kevin Richter (ME)
Simone Hruda, Ph.D.
Air Force Research Laboratory
Team 502 | Retractable Storage Rack for Inert Atmosphere Glove Box
Retractable Storage Rack for Inert Atmosphere Glove Box

An inert atmosphere glove box is a box filled with argon gas that has a very low oxygen and water content. This specialized atmosphere is needed to work with materials that react with oxygen and water vapor. The person using the glove box puts their hands and arms in the glove that are attached to the glove box. Everything the person needs to do experiments in the glove box has to be stored in the glove box, so storage space is at a premium. The equipment that is commonly present in a glove box includes balances, hand tools, jars of chemical, mortars and pestles, and even welding units.

In current glove boxes, the only storage racks are stationary shelves on the back of the unit. Storage space is an issue for users because the gloves have a short reach, and cannot reach everywhere in the glove box. Even portions of the existing shelves are out of reach. The space in the back corners of the glove box are currently unusable for storage. Our team’s project was to create as much usable storage space inside a glove box as possible without interfering with the space needed for the experiments.

Talks with experienced users guided our design. We came up with a sliding rack that attaches to the top of the glove box and has multiple levels of rotatable shelves hung underneath it. It is best described as an inverted lazy Susan on a track. Its rest position is in a back corner of the glove box out of the way of the experiments. If the person needs to get something off or put something on the lazy Susan, they slide it forward from the corner to the front of the glove box where it is in easy reach. They can rotate the lazy susan 360˚ to access the shelf space they need. After use, the person slides it to the back corner until it is needed again. This extra storage creates a cleaner more organized glove box that may even increase the valuable space for experiments in the glove box.

Team (L to R):
Evan Ryan (ME), Jacqueline Matthews (ME) & Michael Rodino (ME)
Eric Hellstrom, Ph.D.
Applied Superconductivity Center
Team 503 | Psyche Mission - Cobalt Class Robotic Explorer for Hypothesized Surfaces
Psyche Mission - Cobalt Class Robotic Explorer for Hypothesized Surfaces

The NASA Psyche mission is a journey to study a metal asteroid named 16 Psyche. This asteroid is found in the asteroid belt and is believed to be the exposed core of a planet. Scientists are studying 16 Psyche to learn more about Earth’s core because Earth’s core is too hot to reach. A robotic explorer that can examine the surface of 16 Psyche is important for collecting data and making new discoveries. The goal of this project is to design and build a robot capable of traveling across the hypothesized metal terrain of the asteroid.  

The robot has four legs with wheels at the end of each leg. Legs allow the robot to jump long distances in the low gravity of the asteroid. Wheels provide a precise way of maneuvering short distances. Each of the four legs and wheels operate independently for adaptable movement across the surface of the asteroid. An internal gear train is found in each leg and moves the foot along a linear path. The motion of this mechanism allows for strong jumping and spring-like stabilization. This linear leg motion also allows the robot to recover if it is tipped over. Overall, the design of this robot introduces a unique concept for space exploration.

Team (L to R):
Devon Foster (ME), Justin Larson (ME), Sadzid Pajevic (ME), Alexander J.Legere (ME) & Chris Lopes (ME)
Jonathan Clark, Ph.D.
Arizona State University
Team 504 | Dual-Shell Football Helmet
Dual-Shell Football Helmet

In recent years, there have been many studies published on the brain effects of playing football. A 2019 study by the Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE) Center at Boston University found that 223 of 266 brains, or 84%, it looked at had some form of CTE. This is a disease of the brain that can affect a person’s ability to think clearly. CTE can also cause depression and has even led some former players to take their own lives.

In response to these studies, the National Football League has put an emphasis on player safety. Introducing new rules and investing money into developing equipment that will better protect the players. In 2014 our sponsor, Bret Berry, set out to create a dual-shell helmet that would lessen the angular acceleration from a blow to the side of the head. These types of hits are the primary cause of CTE. Starting off with determining the dampening material to be used in between the two shells, the team will aim to test the design to prove its effectiveness. 

Testing procedures for helmets all go through an organization known as the National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment (NOCSAE). NOCSAE grades a helmet’s effectiveness against other helmets already in market. With no access to the high-level equipment that NOCSAE uses to test their helmets, the challenge for our team will come in the form of creating a testing mechanism that will mimic the pneumatic ram used in official testing. Testing our helmet against others in the market will give us a true measure of how successful our design is in increasing player safety.

Team (L to R):
Benjamin Meiselman (ME) & Bryce Starr (ME)
William Oates, Ph.D., P.E.
Bret Berry