New Orleans, Louisiana
June 26, 2016
June 26, 2016
August 28, 2016
An active-learning experience has been designed to introduce K-12 STEM students to product development. In a one-hour program, students are guided through the product development cycle as they construct a simple LED flashlight. This multidisciplinary project involves both electrical and mechanical elements plus a discussion of customer needs, which drive product development. Electronic design of the device includes discussion of component selection including the energy source, light source, switch, and resistor, plus a development of the prototype through simulation. Design of the mechanical housing allows for discussion of requirements that arise from design for manufacturability (DFM), design for assembly (DFA), serviceability, usability, and industrial design. Throughout the discussion, students are guided though the assembly process which involves soldering electronic components to a prefabricated printed circuit board (PCB). Assembly also includes a snap-fit case that is created with a 3D printer during the project.
Surveys of students following the exercise indicate a high level of satisfaction with the concepts and product. Students walk away with a self-made product, and more importantly, a lasting impression of the accessibility of product development and engineering.
Diller, M. G., & Segalewitz, S. I. (2016, June), MAKER: Shedding Light on Product Development in About an Hour Paper presented at 2016 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, New Orleans, Louisiana. 10.18260/p.25643
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