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Robosub: A Contest-based Multidisciplinary Senior Design Capstone Project

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2016 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


New Orleans, Louisiana

Publication Date

June 26, 2016

Start Date

June 26, 2016

End Date

August 28, 2016





Conference Session

Promoting Multidisciplinary Efforts

Tagged Division

Multidisciplinary Engineering

Tagged Topic


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Paper Authors


Todd Kaiser Montana State University

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Dr. Todd J. Kaiser is an Associate Professor in the electrical and computer engineering department at Montana State University (MSU). Dr. Kaiser teaches and conducts research in the area of microfabrication of sensors and actuators. He has developed four microfabrication based courses where students use a clean room facility to fabricate transistors, solar cells or MEMS structures. Dr. Kaiser’s research group is currently creating radiation sensors for a radiation tolerant computer system for space flights on satellites and in the International Space Station.

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A team of senior engineering students from this University has competed for the past 5 years in the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI) Robosub competition, held annually in late July in San Diego, CA. The competition requires an autonomous submarine to traverse through various regions within a pool and complete designated missions which require navigation, actuation and control. The interdisciplinary capstone teams have been assembled from three different departments represented by students majoring in Mechanical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering Technology, Electrical Engineering, Computer Engineering and Computer Science. This paper will present an overview of the multidisciplinary capstone project, the lessons-learned from running several iterations of the project and recommendations for further improvements. It will present ideas and methods that should assist faculty at other small institutions in implementing similar contest-based multidisciplinary capstone project.

Kaiser, T. (2016, June), Robosub: A Contest-based Multidisciplinary Senior Design Capstone Project Paper presented at 2016 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, New Orleans, Louisiana. 10.18260/p.26115

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