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Curriculum Development For Rapid Prototyping

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2004 Annual Conference


Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 20, 2004

Start Date

June 20, 2004

End Date

June 23, 2004



Conference Session

NSF Grantees Poster Session

Page Count


Page Numbers

9.365.1 - 9.365.7

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Paper Authors

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Chenhhsin Liu

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Ken Patton

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 1526

Curriculum Development for Rapid Prototyping

Ken Patton and Paul Cheng-Hsin Liu, Saddleback College/ California State University, Los Angeles Project web address:


This project (NSF ATE DUE 0302314) is in its last year of a three-year project. It was funded July 1, 2001. The focus of the grant is to develop curriculum to train technicians in the use of solid modeling as a “Time Compression” tool to help manufacturers and designers reduce cycle time to market. Curriculum is broken down to modules covering such topics as history, processes, materials, uses, current trends, and applications. Of particular interest is its application to the Entertainment Market (animation), and Architecture. We conducted the first “Train the Trainer” summer workshop at San Diego City College in July 2003. The second workshop will be held in summer 2004 at Saddleback College to conclude this project. Saddleback College, Cal State University, Los Angeles, and San Diego City College have developed this project.


The focus of this grant is to develop curriculum to train technicians in the use of solid modeling as a “Time Compression” tool to help manufacturers and designers reduce cycle time to market. As the global marketplace becomes increasingly competitive, products must be produced in shorter and shorter time frames. New time-compression technologies allow product developers to design, prototype, and produce products much more quickly and accurately than could have been imagined even a decade ago. RP systems quickly produce physical models and prototype parts from three-dimensional computer models, such as CAD, CT and MRI scan data. Layer by layer, RP machines fabricate plastic, wood, ceramic, and metal parts using thin, horizontal cross sections from the computer model. With rapid prototyping, the model can often be made within hours, minimizing cycle times and maximizing productivity. The demand for technologists trained in RP has exploded in recent years. Some of the practical applications of RP are visualization, design verification, and even real part fabrication [3]. Figures 1 and 2 show how customers are using RP models and the major RP industry sectors [8].

In southern California there has been a shift from defense driven build-to-specifications contract work to a highly competitive business environment requiring constant development of innovative new products and product variations/improvements. There is more and more design houses moved to Southern California in the last decade than ever. For example, just in the automotive industry alone, there are more than 20 companies established their design facilities from Ventura County, Los Angeles County, Orange County, and down to San Diego County.

Proceedings of the 2004 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright  2004, American Society for Engineering Education

Liu, C., & Patton, K. (2004, June), Curriculum Development For Rapid Prototyping Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah.

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