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Mechanical Engineering-Biomedical Option
Colorado Springs CO

Good Thing It's Cold in the Winter

Megan Chapman on Friday, 18 January 2013.

Don't get me wrong, I love the warm weather, but judging by the number of projects I will be working on this quarter, I know that I will be spending most of time inside getting things done.  

It's nice that now that I have gotten my basic engineering coursework out of the way, I can focus on applying my skills and learning how to work with others and complete a project.  

In all of the engineering disciplines, a multidisciplinary senior design project is a requirement in order to graduate.  Basically your last two quarters of school you are placed on a team with other engineers and given a project either funded by a school or a company to complete.  Each group is assigned a customer for the project and a guide to help them along the process.  Throughout the two quarters that this project is completed there are various meetings and design reviews so I plan on this basically taking over my life.  I was just assigned my project this quarter and it is exactly the type of engineering that I want to do.  There is a preschool in Rochester where half of the children in each class have some sort of disabilities and the other half do not.  A physical therapist who works at the preschool has asked us to redesign81768549455824138_I7pVrfbZ_b a pediatric stander and make it motorized and controllable.  A non-motorized version of the product can be seen below.  I used to work with children 

with disabilities and this is exactly the type of work that I want to be doing after I graduate in May.

Another project that I was assigned this quarter involves the use of Heat Trasfer and/or Transport Phenomena.  The class for this project is called Thermal Fluids Lab II and this project involves being placed on a team randomly, but only with mechanical engineers and together you develop a project that involves heat transfer or Transport Phenomena in some way and the group follows it through the project process from design all the way through testing and analysis.  As of right now my group is planning on analyzing the drag force on a football at different approach angles and determining what effect, if any, the spiral has on the drag force.  We aren't exactly sure how we are going to

duke accomplish this task yet, but RIT does have a wind tunnel that will allow us to measure the forces.

My third and final project that I have been assigned this quarter is in my Rapid Prototyping class.  This class is actually an Industrial Engineering class, but as a Mechanical Engineer I can take it as a technical elective.  This class basically introduces us to many different methods of rapid prototyping and we actually get to practice them because RIT has many different rapid prototyping machines.  The project for this class is also very open ended in that we get to design basically anything we want and use any method of rapid prototyping we have available to create it.  As of now, my group is thinking of using software that the professor has but never used to scan people's faces with a camera and rapid prototype their heads to make personalized bobble heads.  Hopefully we can get this project to work well and help the professor to work it at RIT's innovation festival in May, Imagine RIT.

Hopefully I survive this quarter and have some pretty cool things to show for it.  If anything interesting develops I will be sharing it on here with you all!  You can also follow me on Twitter and follow our Instagram and Twitter accounts to see what other students are working on.