Monthly Archives: March 2017

Project Title: Smart Work Environment and Application of Augmented Reality Overlay for Manufacturing

RaytheonTeam 16011 Members:
Alexandra Kay Beresford, engineering management (team lead)
Nicole Chellman, industrial engineering
Jonah Matanky, mechanical engineering
Bryce Roybal, engineering management
Seth Werly, electrical and computer engineering
Nicholas Yonke, biomedical engineering (with mechanical engineering minor)

Sponsor: Raytheon Missile Systems

Prototype in the Vanguard of Smart Factories

Team 16011 meets in the UA Science and Engineering Library. From left to right, Bryce Roybal, Seth Werly, Nicholas Yonke, Alexandra Beresford, and Nicole Chellman.With its augmented reality model, Team 16011 is plotting a movement – the fourth industrial revolution, or Industry 4.0, to be precise.

The first Industrial Revolution took off with steam power to mechanize work done by humans, animals, and natural forces like wind and moving water. Then came the second, with electricity, assembly lines and mass production. The third saw widespread use of computers and robots beginning to replace assembly line workers. Next up: Industry 4.0 for smart factories, centered on automation and data exchange.

In smart factories, explained team member Nicole Chellman, computers and sensors are integrated with production equipment for communicating remotely, sharing real-time data and making adjustments on the fly.

“Everything communicates with each other,” she said.

Team 16011 is investigating ways to increase manufacturing efficiency using Microsoft HoloLens augmented reality. The students’ augmented reality model, with hologram-like images, allows factory workers and engineers to view guided instructions for assembling and manufacturing small satellites.

“Augmented reality works with virtual components in the real world,” noted team member Seth Werly.

The team also produced a trade study that analyzes certain factors of smart factory technology, including equipment cost and training time.

For their Critical Design Review, students created an animated 3-D model that shows workers how to assemble a 10-by-10-by-10-centimeter weather satellite, or CubeSat.

An animated demo is much easier to understand than written instructions and flat diagrams, said teammate Bryce Roybal.

In the final demonstration during Design Day 2017 on May 1, students wearing HoloLenses will fill the roles of machine operator and engineer reviewing real-time data to identify and fix deficiencies in manufacturing processes.

Project Title: Anti-Drone Device

RaytheonTeam 16003 Members:
Jessica Bingxin Cheung, electrical and computer engineering (team lead)
Sydney Clark, electrical and computer engineering
Ivan Cordoba, electrical and computer engineering
Evan Deforest, mechanical engineering
Justin Larimore, biomedical engineering
Shivani Patel, electrical and computer engineering

Sponsor: Raytheon Missile Systems

Students Take System from Computer Simulation to Reality

We're showing mercy – for now. Team 15003 lead Jessica Cheung holds one of the testing drones while her teammates discuss how they plan to destroy it. From left to right: Evan Deforest, Justin Larimore, Sydney Clark, Cheung, Shivani Patel, and Ivan Cordoba.The Federal Aviation Administration has documented hundreds of close calls between drones and aircraft. Drone swarms are not only dangerous to commercial, rescue and firefighting aviation but they are also a threat to national defense.

Team Dead Drone, sponsored by Raytheon Missile Systems, is designing and assembling a scaled-down anti-drone system, built entirely with off-the-shelf products. The system is expected to detect, track, and electronically or mechanically disable a pair of drones simultaneously.

“We have to show our sponsor that we’re doing the right thing, on their schedule,” said team lead Jessica Bingxin Cheung.

Because Raytheon is particularly interested in the threats commercial drones pose to naval vessels, specs also call for a system that can withstand extreme maritime environments.

The team started with a computerized version of the system that required a user to enter code to disable a simulated drone, something that will be automated in the final project.

The system consists of a microcomputer, LCD screen, Wi-Fi antenna, and a protective case to guard against rain, wind and humidity. Once a drone is detected, the device automatically connects to the drone’s Wi-Fi access point and sends commands via Telnet, an internet protocol for remote communication, to shut it down.

Now that students have experienced success on the computer – and at the Critical Design Review – Team Dead Drone is focused on writing documentation and creating the finished product, which they will demonstrate on the UA Mall at Design Day 2017 on May 1!

Working on the Macadamia Nut Harvester

Project Title: Autonomous Macadamia Nut Harvester Enhancement

UA Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering logoTeam 16063 Members:
Nicklaus Arnold, systems engineering (team lead)
Lexi Corrion, biosystems engineering
Emily Evans, biomedical engineering
Hailey Ogren, biosystems engineering
Jason Stone, mechanical engineering

Sponsor: UA Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering

Students Helping Big Island Farms Trim Costs

Working on the Macadamia Nut HarvesterEngineering Design Team 16063 is taking on what a 2015-2016 Agriculture and Biosystems Engineering team built for Kawainui Farms – a robotic nut-harvesting prototype that looks like a low-slung wheelbarrow on steroids – and making it better.

Commercial harvesting of macadamia nuts, one of Hawaii’s most valuable cash crops, is a costly process. It requires at least three types of heavy machinery, each with a single specialized function.

Some growers, like Kawainui Farm, which has a 20-acre macadamia orchard on the Big Island, opt to harvest by hand at the end of the season after all of the nuts have fallen off the trees. But separating low-quality nuts sitting on the ground for up to three months from fresh, high-quality nuts isn’t economically viable, so the farm sells them at a reduced market price.

The 2015-2016 student prototype consisted of a vehicle platform with a hopper for carrying harvested nuts, a sweeper arm and pickup head for collecting them, and electrical components for power and navigation.

Macadamia nut harvester at Design Day 2016This year’s team is looking “to mitigate revenue loss” with design improvements – a new chassis and drive system, retooled sweeper arm, and sloped hopper to make unloading easier and faster – said team lead Nicklaus Arnold.

The team is also upgrading the motor controller’s GPS navigation, which will make a path around the orchard plotted via open-source software called Mission Planner, and improving internal sensors.

If the harvester encounters an unexpected object, explained Emily Evans, it sends an alert to farm employees via a phone app she and her teammates are developing. Other sensors notify operators when the harvester is full so it can be emptied.

Having passed its Critical Design Review and ordered parts, the team is working on assembly and testing. Since the Campus Agricultural Center doesn’t have a macadamia nut orchard, students are creating a one-acre mockup with traffic cones, including a few in unexpected places to test the collision avoidance system.

Be sure to check out the redesigned system negotiating the UA Mall at Design Day 2017 on May 1!

Team 16036 in front of a mining truck

Project Title: Multifrequency Antenna Mast System for Large Mining Trucks

Caterpillar logoTeam 16036 Members:
Robert Bloom, mechanical engineering
Zichong Cai, mechanical engineering
Wyatt Peña, engineering management, minoring in systems and industrial engineering
Miguel Vasquez, engineering management, minoring in mechanical engineering (team lead)
Brian Wargasaki, mechanical engineering

Sponsor: Caterpillar

Students Create Light Yet Durable Equipment for Always-On Industry

Mining trucks – weighing 250 tons empty and standing three stories high – use complex electrical systems to enable two-way communications and telemetry. The systems power radios, satellite positioning systems, Wi-Fi and cellular data transfer.

If these systems critical to operations and safety aren’t working, trucks are down.

Haul trucks need antennas with clear line of sight to the sky and offboard transmission stations mounted throughout some mines. Because the steel dump body acts as a signal blocker, antennas are mounted on long poles that extend out from the body and above the truck.

Caterpillar’s specs calling for a light yet durable antenna mast system that can be serviced easily and quickly reflect the mining industry’s need for fleets to operate constantly with as little downtime as possible for maintenance and repairs.

“Time is not just money, it’s money times 10,” said project team member Robert Bloom, a mechanical engineering major planning a career in HVAC design.

Not only are students on Team 16036 designing the mast itself, but they are also creating mounting brackets, antenna mountings and cable routings. And they aren’t just designing truck parts, they are developing an understanding for the management side of engineering, too, particularly what goes into machining parts and how to justify associated the costs.

The team will display their completed antenna mast system on the UA Mall at Design Day 2017 on May 1 – with a Ford pickup standing in for one of those monstrous mining trucks.

Engineering Design Team 16075

Project Title: Bisbee Assisted-Lift Delivery System

Team 16075 Members:
Roberto Cordoba Berigan, electrical and computer engineering
Jakob Davis, mechanical engineering
Aaron Hausman, systems and industrial engineering (team lead)
Wesley Lee, mechanical engineering
Scott Payne, systems and mechanical engineering
Martin Wong, electrical and computer engineering

Sponsor: City of Bisbee

Residents of Old Mining Town Get a Lift

Engineering Design Team 16075In Bisbee, an Arizona town known as the Queen of Copper Camps and
famous for its 2 miles of municipal stairways, something as mundane as bringing home the groceries can be quite an ordeal.

The Cochise County seat, population 5,575, sits in a valley surrounded by hills, and many of the town’s hillside houses are accessible only by steep stairs.

Imagine an elderly person carrying packages in one hand, grasping a stairway railing with the other and laboring under the effects of mile-high altitude to get groceries or pet food home.

“Between 65 and 75, life changes a lot,” said Bisbee public works director Andy Haratyk, adding that he has heard many stories of elders taking three days to bring in all the groceries from just one shopping trip.

With the help of Engineering Design Team 16075, Haratyk and other city officials are doing something about it.

The team started construction in February 2017 on the Bisbee Assisted-Lift Delivery System. The conveyor that students are building in B Mountain’s 45-home, 30-percent-grade neighborhood is the start of a citywide system.

With inexpensive off-the-shelf parts, the team is creating an assistance device capable of transporting at least 100 pounds of groceries, firewood, trash and recyclables per trip. Residents will use a call button to summon a transport container that travels along a gear-, belt- or chain-powered conveyor system beside the staircase.

In addition to providing real-world experience for soon-to-be UA graduates, the project is giving Bisbee High School students a chance to work alongside team members and apply civil, electrical, industrial and mechanical engineering principles.

“Just because you’re from Bisbee doesn’t mean you have to think small,” Haratyk said of the teens’ experience, and the conveyor system.