June 14, 2009
June 14, 2009
June 17, 2009
14.164.1 - 14.164.11
Advanced Vehicle Dynamics: Theory in Practice
A novel course in vehicle dynamics was offered in fall-08 by Engineering Technology Department at Arizona State University (ASU). This course titled ‘Advanced Vehicle Dynamics’ was based on multi-body dynamics approach to vehicle dynamics with focus on computational analytical dynamics. It was offered as a graduate course with a unique class composition like 40% students with 10 or more years of industrial experience, 20% students with 20 or more years of industrial experience, 30% graduate students with less than 2 years of experience and 10% senior undergraduate students, interested in pursuing career in automotive engineering. This paper describes the course structure, objectives; challenges faced by the instructor because of diverse class composition and different student expectations, project based learning approach adopted in the course, student participation and the course outcomes. It is interesting to note that some of the project assigned in this course were ‘real life problems’ faced by a leading aftermarket automotive manufacturer. The class, as a team, brainstormed on appropriate strategies to address the project problems. The computational tools and instructional material for the lab were donated by MSC software that actively participated in enhancing the educational experience. This course presents one of the many efforts pursued by the Engineering Technology Department to bring industry and academia closer by giving an opportunity to practicing engineers to ‘sharpen the skills’ and regular students a ‘feel of the real world engineering’.
At Arizona State University, the Department of Engineering Technology (formerly Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering Technology Department) has implemented an automotive concentration within its Mechanical Engineering Technology program. Some of the undergraduate courses offered by the department in this concentration are MET 321 – Introduction to Automotive Engineering, MET 421 – Vehicle Powertrains, MET 423 – Vehicle Chassis Design, MET 424 – Vehicle Electrical Systems, MET 426 – Vehicle Thermal Design, MET 427 – Vehicle System Integration and Testing. Despite of ASU’s geographical remoteness from the Michigan and upper Midwest heart of the US- based automotive industry, the automotive concentration has experienced explosive enrollment growth (of both in-state and non-resident students). In fall-08, the graduate students and practicing engineers requested the author to offer a course in computational vehicle dynamics that will enable them to understand vehicle dynamics from multi-body analytical dynamics point of view. This course also aimed at introducing students to a very powerful computational vehicle dynamics software suite-MSC-ADAMS by MSC- Software1.
Development of such a course needed strong collaboration from Industry, MSC software and the University. The central idea behind the course was that the analytical vehicle dynamics theory would be covered by the author (instructor), U-Haul Technical Center2
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