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An Improved Design for a Viscometer Apparatus

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2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access


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Publication Date

June 22, 2020

Start Date

June 22, 2020

End Date

June 26, 2021

Conference Session

Experimentation and Laboratory-oriented Studies Division Technical Session 5

Tagged Division

Experimentation and Laboratory-Oriented Studies

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Paper Authors


Joseph Michael Derrick Indiana University - Purdue University Indianapolis

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I am currently a model-based development engineer at Carrier specializing in dynamic modeling. My main responsibility is the development of system level models of HVAC products to be used in control verification. Additionally, I assist design engineers through the design optimization process of their product. I have also played a support role in the VMEA process using developed product models.

I am currently pursuing my PhD in Mechanical Engineering at Purdue University in Indianapolis. My area of research is in the coupled phenomena of hot structures. My investigation into this area is to incorporate thermal protection systems either through material\structure deign or passive\active control systems. Additionally, my interests lie in fluid structure interactions, numerical algorithm enhancement for faster and more efficient solvers, etc.

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Michael Golub Indiana University - Purdue University Indianapolis Orcid 16x16

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Michael Golub is the Academic Laboratory Supervisor for the Mechanical Engineering department at IUPUI. He is an associate faculty at the same school, and has taught at several other colleges. He has conducted research related to Arctic Electric Vehicles and 3D printed plastics and metals. He participated and advised several student academic competition teams for several years. His team won 1st place in the 2012 SAE Clean Snowmobile Challenge. He has two masters degrees: one M.S. in Mechanical Engineering and an M.F.A. in Television Production. He also has three B.S. degrees in Liberal Arts, Mechanical Engineering, and Sustainable Energy.

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Jing Zhang Indiana University - Purdue University Indianapolis Orcid 16x16

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Dr. Jing Zhang's research interests are broadly centered on understanding the processing-structure-property relationships in advanced ceramics and metals for optimal performance in application, and identifying desirable processing routes for its manufacture. To this end, the research group employs a blend of experimental, theoretical, and numerical approaches, focusing on several areas, including:

1. Processing-Microstructure-Property-Performance Relationships: thermal barrier coating, solid oxide fuel cell, hydrogen transport membrane, lithium-ion battery
2. Physics-based Multi-scale Models: ab initio, molecular dynamics (MD), discrete element models (DEM), finite element models (FEM)
3. Coupled Phenomena: diffusion-thermomechanical properties
4. Additve Manufacturing (AM) or 3D Printing: AM materials characterization, AM process (laser metal powder bed fusion, ceramic slurry extrusion) design and modeling


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A new viscometer was created to provide a cost-effective way for students to accurately and to precisely determine the viscosity of different fluids. The challenge of designing a viscometer is providing enough distance between tube wall and for vertical tube length. This is because the influence of these two parameters have on the sphere as it falls through the fluid. The cylinder wall affects the fall velocity of the sphere while length is required to reach terminal velocity. Due to the significance of viscosity and helping students understand the governing principle, the design must be reliable, accurate, and assist in the understanding of viscosity. The design is compact enabling placement on a lab table. The built-in electronics and LCD screen output the time without the need for a computer or software application. Component and material selection insured the prototype provides accurate and precise results.

Derrick, J. M., & Golub, M., & Zhang, J. (2020, June), An Improved Design for a Viscometer Apparatus Paper presented at 2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual On line . 10.18260/1-2--34125

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