June 14, 2015
June 14, 2015
June 17, 2015
26.834.1 - 26.834.13
Hands-‐on manufacturing concepts taught to sophomore students during a unique Field Session experience The Mechanical Engineering department at Colorado School of Mines recently implemented a Manufacturing intensive hands-‐on experience for Sophomore level students during Field Session, a three week long rigorous course taken during the summer. During this three-‐week period, students are taught fundamental engineering skills such as design, modeling, CAD-‐CAM, machining, automated machining, prototyping, GD&T and creating a final working model. Field Session is a unique three-‐week long, course that all Colorado School of Mines students take during the summer of their Sophomore and Junior years. It is a time for students to work on hands-‐on-‐projects that are open ended and also learn about technology that they would not necessarily see in the classroom. The course is taken directly after the spring semester their sophomore years, which allows students to continue on to their internships for the summer. The Mechanical Engineering department has implemented a Manufacturing and Design intensive Field Session course for students to gain comfort with designing and building with their own two hands along with basic understanding of Manufacturing Processes. Additionally, several spaces have been created for students to work on developing projects. ‘The Garage’, as students call it, is a Design and Prototyping space where students can use 3D printers, laser cutters, material testing and quality and control equipment to build working prototypes and final products. The current Field Session project requires students to design and build a small, hand-‐sized, car that will be raced. Throughout this project students work with SolidWorks and are taught GD&T, build the car chassis using the CNC Mini Hass and MasterCam, program Arduinos to take accurate track time readings and finally race their cars on two different tracks. Students use HDPE plastic to machine the chassis of their cars and select other equipment available to them for creating bearings, couplings, shafts and any other components required to build their final working cars. This open-‐ended design process implemented early on in students educations is just one of many changes made to a recently accredited Mechanical Engineering degree program. This course is being tracked and assessed using annual surveys starting Sophomore year, when students declare their majors. Additionally, a Manufacturing Processes course has become a required course in the ME curriculum and is taken the students junior years. With these changes to the current ME curriculum it is hypothesized that when students get to Senior Design and their actual careers, that they are more comfortable with how various Manufacturing Processes and the steps that it takes to create a well tolerance working product.
Blacklock, J., & Rodriguez, D. (2015, June), Hands-on Manufacturing Concepts Taught to Sophomore Level Students During a Unique Field Session Experience Paper presented at 2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Seattle, Washington. 10.18260/p.24171
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