June 22, 2003
June 22, 2003
June 25, 2003
8.1152.1 - 8.1152.10
The Mechanical Engineering Capstone Design Experience at Union College
Prof. Nicholas Krouglicof Union College Department of Mechanical Engineering Schenectady, NY 12308
Abstract Design of Mechanical Systems (MER-144) is a project-oriented course that provides a capstone design experience for the mechanics area of the mechanical engineering curriculum at Union College. Choosing an appropriate design project for this course, one that integrates all of the required pedagogical elements, is always a challenge. This year, students enrolled in MER-144 were asked to design a walking robot to compete in the SAE Walking Machine Challenge (part of the SAE Collegiate Design Series). This proved to be a very appropriate project vis-à-vis the course objectives and outcomes, particularly with respect to developing an ability to practice the techniques, skills, and modern engineering tools necessary for engineering practice.
By referring to specific examples from the student design projects, this paper describes how the various course objectives were successfully met. In addition, certain criteria for choosing an appropriate design problem are discussed.
Introduction The mechanical engineering curriculum at Union favors a hands-on approach to engineering education whereby theoretical analysis is reinforced by laboratory exercises and design experiences. In fact, the program features two senior level capstone design courses. Design of Thermo-Fluid Systems (MER-160) applies optimization techniques and cost analysis to the design of thermal/fluid processes and systems. The second design course, Design of Mechanical Systems (MER-144), is a project-oriented course that provides a capstone design experience for the mechanics area of the mechanical engineering curriculum.
This paper focuses on the latter and specifically addresses the question of selecting an appropriate design project that is consistent with the course objectives and outcomes. The design project is the single most important component of the course and has a direct impact on several of the course objectives, namely:
• The ability to carefully analyze a design problem and brainstorm possible solutions. • The ability to design, analyze (kinematics, dynamics, stress) and model an engineering system as well as the ability to apply the appropriate engineering tools including Computer- Aided Design (CAD), Finite-Element Analysis (FEA), and motion analysis. • The ability to apply the basic principles of “Design for Manufacture and Assembly”. • The ability to prepare a professional engineering drawing package describing a complex engineering system.
Proceedings of the 2003 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copywrite © 2003, American Society for Engineering Education
Krouglicof, N. (2003, June), The Mechanical Engineering Capstone Design Experience At Union College Paper presented at 2003 Annual Conference, Nashville, Tennessee. https://peer.asee.org/12683
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