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Extended Summer Research to Senior Design Project

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2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Tampa, Florida

Publication Date

June 15, 2019

Start Date

June 15, 2019

End Date

October 19, 2019

Conference Session

Energy Conversion and Conservation Division Technical Session 1

Tagged Division

Energy Conversion and Conservation

Tagged Topic


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Paper Authors


Jinmyun Jo Virginia State University

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Virginia State University, Associate Professor

Virginia Tech, Ph.D.

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Xiaoyu Zhang Old Dominion University

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Dr. Xiaoyu Zhang's research interests include high-temperature electrolysis, fuel cell, photoelectrochemical water splitting, 3D printing.

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Ali A. Ansari Virginia State University

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Dr. Ansari has earned his BS degree in Electrical Engineering in 1980, MS degree in Electrical Engineering in 1982 and PhD in 1990 from the University of Texas at Arlington. His research interest is in the area of signals and control system. Dr. Ansari is a professor of Computer Engineering at Virginia State University.

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Pamela Leigh-Mack Virginia State University


James Irvin Cooke Jr. Virginia State University

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Director of Assessment and Senior Capstone Experiences
Program Coordinator of Information Logistics program
Department of Technology
Virginia State University

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There are many opportunities for undergraduate summer research. However, the summer research rarely continues after the summer is over because the project is small, requires same mentor and/or specific equipment. This paper presents a 15-month sustainable energy research conducted by seven undergraduate students. For 2017 REU Summer Internship, three students started this research at Old Dominion University (ODU). They designed and fabricated a prototype of polymer membrane fuel cell with lightweight bipolar plates. The performance of the lightweight fuel cell was characterized using a fuel cell test stand. However, no power output was detected by the first group. After the summer, another three students made a new fuel cell with a different fabrication procedure at Virginia State University. The test results indicated that the 2nd generation lightweight fuel cell was able to generate power. For 2018 REU Summer Internship, another student completed the research at ODU, where again power was successfully generated from the lightweight fuel cell. The research results were presented at a technology and engineering conference. This research followed STEM student assessments on abilities to identify and solve engineering problems; design, experiment, analyze and interpret data; understand professional and ethical responsibility; and communicate effectively. During the research, the participated students acquired an intensive and publishable research experience. It is expected that the participants will pursue advanced study on sustainable energy such as fuel cell in their future professional and/or academic career.

Jo, J., & Zhang, X., & Ansari, A. A., & Leigh-Mack, P., & Cooke, J. I. (2019, June), Extended Summer Research to Senior Design Project Paper presented at 2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Tampa, Florida. 10.18260/1-2--32825

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