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Interdisciplinary Senior Design Project to Develop a Retrofit Shock Absorbing Go-Kart Seat

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2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Tampa, Florida

Publication Date

June 15, 2019

Start Date

June 15, 2019

End Date

June 19, 2019

Conference Session

Manufacturing Division Technical Session 7

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Paper Authors


Yalcin Ertekin Drexel University

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Dr. Ertekin received his BS degree in mechanical engineering from Istanbul Technical University. He received MS degree in Production Management from Istanbul University. After working for Chrysler Truck Manufacturing Company in Turkey as a project engineer, he received dual MS degrees in engineering management and mechanical engineering from Missouri University of Science and Technology (MS&T), formerly the University of Missouri-Rolla. He worked for Toyota Motor Corporation as a quality assurance engineer for two years and lived in Toyota City, Japan. He received his Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from MS&T in 1999 while he worked as a quality engineer for Lumbee Enterprises in St. Louis, Missouri. His first teaching position was at the architectural and manufacturing Sciences department of Western Kentucky University. He was a faculty at Trine University teaching mainly graduate courses as well as undergraduate courses in engineering technology and mechanical engineering departments. He is currently teaching in Engineering Technology Program at Drexel University. His area of expertise is in CAD/CAM, Computer Numerical Control (CNC) machining, rapid prototyping and quality control. His research interest includes sensor based condition monitoring of CNC machining, machine tool accuracy characterization and enhancement, non-invasive surgical tool design, reverse engineering and bio materials.

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Irina Nicoleta Ciobanescu Husanu Drexel University

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Irina Ciobanescu Husanu, Ph. D. is Assistant Clinical Professor with Drexel University, Engineering Technology program. Her area of expertise is in thermo-fluid sciences with applications in micro-combustion, fuel cells, green fuels and plasma assisted combustion. She has prior industrial experience in aerospace engineering that encompasses both theoretical analysis and experimental investigations such as designing and testing of propulsion systems including design and development of pilot testing facility, mechanical instrumentation, and industrial applications of aircraft engines. Also, in the past 10 years she gained experience in teaching ME and ET courses in both quality control and quality assurance areas as well as in thermal-fluid, energy conversion and mechanical areas from various levels of instruction and addressed to a broad spectrum of students, from freshmen to seniors, from high school graduates to adult learners. She also has extended experience in curriculum development. Dr Husanu developed laboratory activities for Measurement and Instrumentation course as well as for quality control undergraduate and graduate courses in ET Masters program. Also, she introduced the first experiential activity for Applied Mechanics courses. She is coordinator and advisor for capstone projects for Engineering Technology.

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Andrew Chi Drexel University

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Thomas Hays

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In recent years there has been a big push to get students into the STEM fields. However, what seems to be lacking in this academic push is the hands on side of it. Engineering simply just isn’t about equations, but actually design and developing as well as fabricating a physical product. Something you can touch and in most cases see work. The Engineering Technology field fits into STEM academics and is very important. In order for companies to compete in the global marketplace, employers in the 21st century require their engineers couple the traditional engineering design skills with new skills in design and development, as well as the ability to function multi-disciplinary. With learning the importance of prototype development and manufacturing, the Senior Design team at XXXXX University's Engineering Technology Department have decided to take on a challenge in the entertainment industry specifically driving a go-kart vehicle in a closed track. To do this they have addressed the most common issue with driving a go-kart, which is experiencing potential pressure ulcers as well as upper and lower back pain after driving in the kart. The project seeks to solve this problem by creating a retrofit kit using interlinked air pockets with a gel pad covering to evenly distribute the pressure on the driver’s body and absorb the vibration of the seat that the driver normally experiences. The pressure the driver experiences during the ride is measured using a network of 8 sensors placed at the major points of contact between the driver’s body, and the body of the seat. The vibration level experienced by the driver is measured using an accelerometer on the seat itself. The seat retrofit is made using polyurethane coated polyester for the main structure of the seat. The air pockets are made using flexible polyvinyl chloride fabric. The air pockets themselves have an interconnected design for optimal pressure redistribution. The target cost for each individual retrofit is $93 with a selling price for $600. The significance of the methodology to be applied in this capstone course project is to combine theory and practice to prepare the students to become better problem solvers and obtain practical solutions to real life/simulated problems using a project based approach. Senior Design capstone project has the following major goals. 1) Raise student awareness of contemporary issues as they relate to the Engineering Technology field. 2) Enhance student decision-making and problem solving skills in a multi-attribute and team setting. Students in the Mechanical, Electrical, and Industrial fields along with many others can learn many new skills from multi-disciplinary projects such as the design and development of a go-kart seat to minimize vibrations felt by drivers. Such projects show students how to use different types of technology, and demonstrate how advanced technology can be used in an innovative product improvement. Overall, many different fields of engineering can benefit from this application, enabling the development of skill and knowledge in many different engineering aspects and processes. This capstone design project stimulates the students’ interest in real-world product realization. Expected student learning outcomes assessment in this capstone course was performed using written reports and oral presentations as well as an evaluation of each student’s contribution to the project. Oral presentations were assessed at the end of the first and last quarter and written reports at the end of each quarter. Both written reports and oral presentations were assessed by all faculty members and a number of outside assessors from regional industries. The assessment of individual student contributions was performed by the project advisor and co-advisor. The students’ performance was assessed using a set of performance indicators that are also used to assess the program’s student a-k outcomes (ABET). Each indicator is assessed according to a Likert-type scale and the results weighted to emphasize technical qualities of the work and scaled to produce a score from 0 to 100 in order to determine the students’ final grades.

Ertekin, Y., & Ciobanescu Husanu, I. N., & Chi, A., & Hays, T. (2019, June), Interdisciplinary Senior Design Project to Develop a Retrofit Shock Absorbing Go-Kart Seat Paper presented at 2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Tampa, Florida. 10.18260/1-2--33006

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