Virtual On line
June 22, 2020
June 22, 2020
June 26, 2021
Experimentation and Laboratory-Oriented Studies
The impetus of capstone experience is to allow a student to use knowledge they have cultivated and skills they have gained to design and develop a solution to a problem or to innovate an existing artifact for better performance. A university in South East USA recently started a Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) Collegiate Design Series (CDS) specifically the Formula SAE (FSAE). The CDS “competitions take students beyond textbook theory by enabling them to design, build, and test the performance of a real vehicle and then compete with other students from around the globe in exciting and intense competitions” . The FSAE activities align with the capstone experience rationale.
This paper discusses the experience both the students and faculty had in the design, build, and test of the powertrain. The powertrain is an extensive system since it provides the power and transmission to develop motion of the vehicle. The presentation covers the background of FSAE at the university, the powertrain as part of the capstone experience, and the outcome.
This paper views involvement in capstone activities thorough Kolb’s Experiential Learning Theory (ELT), namely: concrete learning, reflective observation, abstract conceptualization and active experimentation. Student class work learning is enhanced greatly by transfer of the information to a concrete problem solving activity.
FSAE was started at the College of Engineering to offer students a platform to experience their knowledge and skills. For this reason, a student does not have to be taking a capstone credit to be part of the FSAE team. Capstone and non-capstone get to work together in the FSAE activities. Their roles are established at the beginning for Fall semester to delineate expectations of the two groups of students. The capstone students are required to meet all course requirements while non-capstone students are not. In this arrangement, the FSAE faculty becomes a default mentor of the capstone students. Capstone students (referred to students from here on) study the scope of their task, create a timeline of when they expect to complete each identified activity (Gantt chart), calculate forces, torques, etc that pertain to their system, determine how their design fits with the overall vehicle, propose and work with in the given budget, identify parts or components to purchase and propose vendors, and make a division of labor among its members. The students keep an engineering notebook for the entire capstone experience in which they keep all the activities they do include detailed design work. Faculty review student work in agreed upon intervals and they are a resource to students for the yearlong experience. At the end of the Fall semester, the major design is complete and Spring semester is mostly fabricating.
Six students and two faculty were part of the FSAE powertrain Capstone at this university and they share lessons learned. Two of the students and one faculty participated in the competition and learned a lot with during the experience. This paper will highlight the experiences gained both successful and those that need attention.
Pierson, J., & Mativo, J. M., & Chiuz, E., & Trudgen, M., & Herring, C. (2020, June), Student Participation in Formula SAE Design, Fabrication, and Testing as Capstone Experience Paper presented at 2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual On line . 10.18260/1-2--35227
ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2020 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015