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Board 124: MAKER - Recycling HDPE in an Academic Makerspace

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2023 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Baltimore , Maryland

Publication Date

June 25, 2023

Start Date

June 25, 2023

End Date

June 28, 2023

Conference Session

Manufacturing Division (MFG) Poster Session

Tagged Division

Manufacturing Division (MFG)

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Paper Authors


Austin Talley Texas State University

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Dr. Austin Talley is an Assistant Professor of Practice in the Ingram School of Engineering at Texas State University. Prior to joining the faculty at Texas State University, Dr. Austin Talley worked as a manufacturing quality engineer for a test and measurement company, National Instruments, in Austin, TX. Dr. Austin Talley is a licensed by state of Texas as a Professional Engineer. Both of Dr. Austin Talley’s graduate degrees, a doctorate and masters in Mechanical Engineering, manufacturing and design area, are from the University of Texas at Austin. Additionally, Dr. Austin Talley holds an undergraduate degree from Texas A&M University in Mechanical Engineering. His research is in engineering design theory and engineering education. He has published over 30 papers in engineering education journals and conference proceedings. He has worked to implement multiple National Science Foundation (NSF) grants focused on engineering education. He has been an instructor in more than ten week long summer K-12 teach Professional Development Institutes (PDI). He has received multiple teaching awards. He has developed design based curriculum for multiple K-12 teach PDIs and student summer camps.

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Kimberly Grau Talley P.E. Texas State University Orcid 16x16

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Dr. Kimberly G. Talley, P.E. is an associate professor in the Department of Engineering Technology, Bobcat Made Makerspace Director at Texas State University, and a licensed Professional Engineer. She received her Ph.D. and M.S.E. from the University of Texas at Austin in Structural Engineering. Her undergraduate degrees in History and in Construction Engineering and Management are from North Carolina State University. Dr. Talley teaches courses in the Construction Science and Management and Civil Engineering Technology Programs, and her research focus is in student engagement and retention in engineering and engineering technology education. Contact:

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Pablo Rodriguez Verde

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Academic makerspaces are becoming increasingly common on university campuses. Their growing numbers raise the question of how can an university makerspace engage a diverse set of users, who represent the university’s student body, into the space. As such a project in the Ingram Hall Makerspace has been implemented to attempt to engage diverse students by doing post-consumer recycling of HDPE (#2) plastic. This paper will describe the process used to clean, cut and/or shred #2, and then mold the prepared plastic into new products. At present, students can make a screwdriver, coaster, or a key chain out of the post-consumer plastics. The molds for the project were CNC-milled in the Ingram Hall Makerspace by manufacturing engineering students out of aluminum blocks. This paper will go through some lessons learned about the mold making process. As a part of the presentation, the evolution of the molds and sample products will be displayed. The paper also discusses some future projects that have been started to move the overall project forward with the goal to make student-led post-consumer recycling an active part of the Ingram Hall Makerspace experience.

Talley, A., & Talley, K. G., & Rodriguez Verde, P. (2023, June), Board 124: MAKER - Recycling HDPE in an Academic Makerspace Paper presented at 2023 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Baltimore , Maryland. 10.18260/1-2--42430

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