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Engineering Education In Alternative Energy

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Conference

2006 Annual Conference & Exposition

Location

Chicago, Illinois

Publication Date

June 18, 2006

Start Date

June 18, 2006

End Date

June 21, 2006

ISSN

2153-5965

Conference Session

ChE: Innovation to Improve Student Learning

Tagged Division

Chemical Engineering

Page Count

10

Page Numbers

11.552.1 - 11.552.10

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/123

Download Count

30

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Paper Authors

biography

Jason Keith Michigan Technological University

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Jason Keith is an Assistant Professor of Chemical Engineering at Michigan Technological University. His research and teaching interests are in heat and mass transfer, reaction engineering, and alternative energy through the AFE enterprise.

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Michael Miller Michigan Technological University

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Michael Miller is a PhD student in the Department of Chemical Engineering at Michigan Technological University. His research interest is in heat transfer in polymer composites.

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Kirk Opella Michigan Technological University

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Michael Miller is a MS student in the Department of Chemical Engineering at Michigan Technological University. His research interest is in alternative energy.

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Julia King Michigan Technological University

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Julia King is an Associate Professor of Chemical Engineering at Michigan Technological University. Her research and teaching interests are in transport properties of polymer composites.

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Jay Meldrum Michigan Technological University

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Jay Meldrum is Director of the Keweenaw Research Center at Michigan Technological University. Jay is co-advisor to the AFE Enterprise.

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Chris Green Michigan Technological University

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Chris Green is a Senior Research Engineer at the Keweenaw Research Center at Michigan Techological University. Chris is a co-advisor to the AFE Enterprise.

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Geoff Gwaltney Michigan Technological University

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Geoff Gwaltney is a Senior Research Engineer at the Keweenaw Research Center at Michigan Techological University. Geoff has worked closely with the AFE Enterprise.

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Scott Bradley Michigan Technological University

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Scott Bradley is a Project Manager and Research Leader at the Keweenaw Research Center at Michigan Techological University. Scott has worked closely with the AFE Enterprise.

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

Engineering Education in Alternative Energy Abstract

This paper describes education and research efforts in alternative energy at Michigan Technological University (MTU). A particular emphasis will be placed on the multidisciplinary education of chemical engineering undergraduate students in alternative energy. Experiences can involve enrollment in an interdisciplinary design project, an elective fuel cell course, a hydrogen fuel cell “electrochemical engineering” laboratory, or performing basic or applied research with university faculty and staff. Teaching and mentoring opportunities are also available to doctoral students.

The major aspect of the experience is the Alternative Fuels and Fuel Cell Enterprise (AFE). This is a multidisciplinary, research-oriented undergraduate research project which is run as a business with student management and faculty / staff oversight. The students are currently working on the development of a hybrid, alternative fuel military transport and a transportable alternative energy demonstration unit. Furthermore, these students are involved in minor projects studying other forms of alternative energy, alternative energy applications, or energy integration. This project is in its fourth year and typically enrolls about thirty chemical, mechanical, and electrical engineering undergraduates.

Introduction

Alternative energy is a topic of current interest due to rising oil costs due to increased worldwide demand and political instability in the Middle East. During the 2004 election campaigns, both President George W. Bush and Senator John Kerry discussed as part of their platforms an increased focus on alternative energy research and development. Furthermore, within the State of Michigan there has been increased emphasis on fuel cell applications to motor vehicles. To prepare our students to create the future, faculty and staff at MTU have developed a wide range of interdisciplinary courses and projects in alternative energy.

After describing the structure of the MTU enterprise program, the AFE enterprise and its projects will be presented. This program allows for a unique, multidisciplinary integration of research into teaching. Following this will be a description of the elective course, laboratory, and focused research projects.

The MTU Enterprise Program

MTU students can pursue a minor or concentration (curriculum shown in Table 1 with elective modules listed in Table 2) in the Enterprise program as part of their respective accredited degree program. A vertical (sophomores, juniors, and seniors) and horizontal (various engineering and business disciplines) integration makes the program a unique experience for students. Over 10% of students enrolled in the College of Engineering are involved in (mostly) industry-sponsored enterprise projects, in one of twenty enterprises.

Keith, J., & Miller, M., & Opella, K., & King, J., & Meldrum, J., & Green, C., & Gwaltney, G., & Bradley, S. (2006, June), Engineering Education In Alternative Energy Paper presented at 2006 Annual Conference & Exposition, Chicago, Illinois. https://peer.asee.org/123

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2006 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015