2019 ASEE Zone 1 Conference

April 11-13, 2019 | Niagara Falls, NY

Niagara Falls.

ASEE is a pre-eminent authority on the education of engineering professionals, exercising worldwide leadership in conjunction with our corporate and international partners. This unique international conference is dedicated to current and future trends in engineering and engineering technology education, with topics including, but not limited to, innovation, leadership, entrepreneurship, and the internet of things. We welcome contributions of professional papers/presentations, workshops, panel discussions, student papers and/or student posters.




Presentations and posters

Thursday workshops

Workshop 1: Using Subgoal Labeling in Teaching Introductory Programming | Adrienne Decker, Department of Engineering Education, University at Buffalo

Subgoal labeling is an instructional design framework for breaking down problems into pieces that are small enough for novices to grasp, and often difficult for instructors (i.e., experts) to articulate. Subgoal labels have been shown to improve student performance during problem solving in numerous disciplines. Improved student performance occurs because subgoal labels improve student transfer and retention of knowledge. With support from NSF (DUE-1712025, #1712231), subgoal labels have been identified and integrated into an introductory programming course (variables, expressions, conditionals, loops, arrays, classes). This workshop will introduce participants to the materials and demonstrate how the subgoal labels and worked examples are integrated throughout the course. Materials include over 100 worked examples and practice problem pairs that increase in complexity and difficulty within each topic. The materials are designed to be integrated into introductory programming courses as homework or classroom examples and activities. Assessment of topics using subgoal labels will also be discussed. Participants will also engage in an activity where they create an example for their own course using subgoal labels.

Workshop 2:  Engaging Students in Your Technical Classroom using Their Smartphones With Selected Apps | James Mallory, Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT)

Capstone projects provide students with an opportunity to integrate their technical and non-technical knowledge and skills to real-world problems. Students gain experience gathering requirements, developing candidate designs, performing trades, and developing and demonstrating a solution. They often use managerial software (spreadsheets, word-processing, and presentation) to capture stakeholder needs, system requirements, and high-level design concepts. This approach can incorporate systems engineering concepts; however, it fails to take advantage of the opportunity to introduce advanced Model-Based Systems Engineering (MBSE) methods. MBSE is “the formalized application of modeling to support system requirements, design, analysis, verification and validation activities beginning in the conceptual design phase and continuing throughout development and later life cycle phases.”1 It is becoming increasingly important because of the rise in system complexity, standards, and regulations. Having experience in the use of MBSE would enable graduates to more readily apply their knowledge and abilities in an increasingly complex world, a world that includes cyber-physical aspects in even the most basic applications. Accreditation organizations and advisory boards expect Engineering and Engineering Technology (ET) programs to include more real-world problems and state-of-the-art tools in curricula. An ABET accredited ET program “must provide a capstone or integrating experience that develops student competencies in applying both technical and non-technical skills in solving problems.”2 Similarly, an ABET accredited baccalaureate engineering program must culminate “in a major design experience … incorporating appropriate engineering standards and multiple realistic constraints.”3 Demonstrating traceability of stakeholder requirements and standards to their problem solutions would be clear evidence that these expectations were satisfied. In engineering programs, incorporating MBSE would also bolster evidence for student outcomes (c), (e), (g), and (k).3 The International Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE) advocates a vision that includes: “Systems engineering [as] a part of every engineer’s curriculum.”4 Further, they assert “Systems engineering skills cannot be limited to a small number of systems engineers, but will be embraced by numerous discipline-centric practitioners. As a result, systems engineering education and training will be integrated into discipline-specific engineering curriculums. Systems engineering will be widely recognized as an important complement to domain specific education and taught for awareness in most other fields of engineering and social/economic/policy educational areas.” This workshop will equip participants with the knowledge and abilities to help make this vision a reality. It will begin with basic systems engineering and MBSE concepts and include capstone-level MBSE applications with a state-of-the-art tool. Upon completion, participants will be able to readily incorporate the concepts in their courses.

Workshop 3:  Safezone | Alexandra Longo, American Society for Engineering Education

Safe Zone Ally Training workshops are interactive training sessions for faculty, students, and the professional community that seek to raise awareness for LGBTQ+ inclusion in STEM and create a visible network of allies to foster a supportive atmosphere for LGBTQ+ individuals. During these research-informed workshops, participants will build the knowledge and skills needed to create a more inclusive and affirming environment for LGBTQ+ individuals in engineering.  The workshops have been developed by a community of Science and Engineering professionals and students, specifically for a STEM audience. 

Workshop 4: Using MBSE to Convey Systems Engineering Concepts in a Capstone Design Course | Richard LeBoeuf, WW Technology Group

Capstone projects provide students with an opportunity to integrate their technical and non-technical knowledge and skills to real-world problems. Students gain experience gathering requirements, developing candidate designs, performing trades, and developing and demonstrating a solution. They often use managerial software (spreadsheets, word-processing, and presentation) to capture stakeholder needs, system requirements, and high-level design concepts. This approach can incorporate systems engineering concepts; however, it fails to take advantage of the opportunity to introduce advanced Model-Based Systems Engineering (MBSE) methods. MBSE is “the formalized application of modeling to support system requirements, design, analysis, verification and validation activities beginning in the conceptual design phase and continuing throughout development and later life cycle phases.”1 It is becoming increasingly important because of the rise in system complexity, standards, and regulations. Having experience in the use of MBSE would enable graduates to more readily apply their knowledge and abilities in an increasingly complex world, a world that includes cyber-physical aspects in even the most basic applications. Accreditation organizations and advisory boards expect Engineering and Engineering Technology (ET) programs to include more real-world problems and state-of-the-art tools in curricula. An ABET accredited ET program “must provide a capstone or integrating experience that develops student competencies in applying both technical and non-technical skills in solving problems.”2 Similarly, an ABET accredited baccalaureate engineering program must culminate “in a major design experience … incorporating appropriate engineering standards and multiple realistic constraints.”3 Demonstrating traceability of stakeholder requirements and standards to their problem solutions would be clear evidence that these expectations were satisfied. In engineering programs, incorporating MBSE would also bolster evidence for student outcomes (c), (e), (g), and (k).3 The International Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE) advocates a vision that includes: “Systems engineering [as] a part of every engineer’s curriculum.”4 Further, they assert “Systems engineering skills cannot be limited to a small number of systems engineers, but will be embraced by numerous discipline-centric practitioners. As a result, systems engineering education and training will be integrated into discipline-specific engineering curriculums. Systems engineering will be widely recognized as an important complement to domain specific education and taught for awareness in most other fields of engineering and social/economic/policy educational areas.” This workshop will equip participants with the knowledge and abilities to help make this vision a reality. It will begin with basic systems engineering and MBSE concepts and include capstone-level MBSE applications with a state-of-the-art tool. Upon completion, participants will be able to readily incorporate the concepts in their courses.


Friday workshops

Teaching Strategies for Cybersecurity K-12 Programs | Sadan Kulturel-Konak, Pennsylvania State University

Despite the dramatic growth in demand for cybersecurity professionals, the educational pipeline of the cybersecurity workforce is not strong. Particularly, minorities and women constitute a very small percent of the information security workforce. To introduce K-12 students to cybersecurity career pathways through informal learning experiences, Penn State Berks has been hosting cybersecurity summer camps and discovery days in the last decade. This workshop will first introduce the curricula of these youth programs and demonstrates sample hands-on activities used in these programs. Next, we will provide several strategies to make complex cyber security concepts easy to understand as well as an interesting and enjoyable learning experience for K-12 students. Finally, we summarize our lessons-learned about organizing cybersecurity youth programs.

Integration of STEM+C Into the K12 Curriculum | Frank Rizzo, Alden Central School District

STEM+C is becoming increasingly important in preparing today's students for the future. Integrating STEM+C to students early on in their academic career can go a long way toward encouraging students with an aptitude for STEM+C to select this as a career choice. Successful integration involves complementing the classroom experience with unique extracurricular opportunities. A team from the Alden Central School District will be discussing the model that they have used to successfully integrate STEM+C into the K12 curriculum and beyond. Teachers, administrators, and students will provide an overview of their implementation, starting with how they work with their students to develop computational thinking, design, and problem solving in grades K through 5. This experience culminates with a unique and innovative Maker Space which gives students in grades 3 through 5 an exciting opportunity to hone these skills. This foundation provides the basis for the middle school experience, where coding is introduced in the classroom, extracurricular opportunities are provided through the Robotics Team and STEAM Night. The high school experience transitions the students so they are ready to embark on a career in STEM+C upon graduation. Courses provide the formal preparation, while the Robotics Team, internship opportunities , and ATLAS support for their one-to-world initiative provide the extracurricular component. Upon providing the aforementioned overview, the panel will be available for questions, as they help facilitate successful STEM+C integration to the workshop participants' programs.

Presentations and lightning talks

Abstracts are listed in order of appearance in the program

Collaborations for Advancing Education

Collaborative course delivery as a strategy to sustain niche technology programs| Elena Brewer, SUNY-Erie.

Vacuum technology is critical to research and advanced manufacturing industries such as semiconductor and nanotechnology.  To meet rising industry demand for qualified technicians working with vacuum equipment, Y community college considered developing a Vacuum Technology program or adding vacuum courses to existing Electrical Engineering Technology and Nanotechnology programs.  However, vacuum technology is a highly specialized area.  It is costly to develop, deliver, and sustain technical programs (curriculum, equipment, instructional talent, numbers of students available locally) at community and technical colleges.  Therefore, finding a way to share programmatic resources became an essential consideration.  The partnership with Z community college’s existing Vacuum Technology program was developed as a result. 

Z community college offers a curriculum in Vacuum Technology using video conferencing (telepresence classroom) to teach classes synchronously to distance sites.  This distance education mode was developed as part of a NSF-ATE funded project and incorporates a hands-on component utilizing a Vacuum Equipment Trainer (VET) system shipped to the remote locations. This delivery mode addresses equipment expense, faculty expertise and student demographics problems common to seated courses.  For example, student demographics include non-traditional students working full-time and not able to attend seated courses.  This delivery mode also overcomes the limitations of on-line course delivery by adding “live” in-class interactions and hands-on experiences.  

This faculty paper discusses the logistics of a classroom partnership across institutions during spring 2018: negotiating differences in time zones, course schedules, and program curriculum; shared online learning management systems; and, dual student registration and site faculty compensation.  The paper reports student and faculty assessments of the partnership, including problems encountered during course delivery and potential solutions.  Finally, the importance of networking opportunities for community college technical programs’ survival and next steps in the partnership development are discussed.

College Industry Partnership in Engineering Technology Education| Jikai Du, SUNY Buffalo State College

In today’s engineering education, challenges exist to motivate and educate students from the millennial generation, such as how to close the gap between 21st century workplace demands and a 21st century education, how to enhance students’ passion for learning and commitment to lifelong learning, how to better infusing 21st century skills into the classroom, and so on. Among various high impact practices and educational technology, real world problems and hands-on experience are efficient approaches to improve students learning experience. In this paper, a college industry partnership was established to provide students opportunities in “Shock and Vibration” class to do measurements following industrial standards. Through the partnership, an industrial partner toured department vibration lab and understood the requirements to run a vibration lab. Industrial partner then designed and fabricated three vibration systems and donated them to the department. After the systems were set up in the lab, an industrial expert first gave a presentation to the class to explain the mechanisms and applications of various types of industrial acoustic sensors. Then he oversaw the student’s lab experience and gave students on-site guidance on the instrumentation used in industry and how to interpret such instrumentation. The industrial expert also gave students suggestions on how to write a professional lab report. Through such collaboration, not only students are able to experience a real industrial measurement, but also industrial partner can be exposed and recognized by academia and has possible future employees better trained. In this paper, plans to improve such collaboration and expand it to other classes in the future were also discussed.

First Year Engineering Success Seminar for Multiple Campuses| Analicia Leiva, Texas A&M University

CLEN 001 (Engineering Success Course) is a course originated for first generation college students who received a specific university scholarship, and are required to take a success seminar their first year. The class is also taught in 2 other campuses where students also can receive this scholarship. As of 2018-2019 school year, the course was expanded to include helping students with low math scores. In addition, the course also expanded to remote campuses where we have a few hundred students taking their introductory math and science courses. Fall 2018 had 37 sections with 1,356 students enrolled across all campuses. Once the course started to reach further than the main campus, there was a large need to create content that would be consistent throughout each classroom which is why the course started to work on an eCampus presence. Resources on the main campus are available for all these students to use since many of the other campuses do not have them available, however; the accessibility of them is hard for the students located more than 30 minutes away from the campus which is over 1,000 students at least.

Integrate Research, Education and Training to Improve Industry Practice on Biopharmaceutical Production and Supply Chain Risk Management| Wei Xie, Northeastern University

The Biomanufacturing Industry is growing rapidly and becoming one of the key drivers of medicine and life science. Since biopharma manufacturing is based on living organisms, there exists uncertainty in supply, production, storage and delivery, which leads to highly volatile outcomes. Even though rich data are collected during production processes and at each stage in the supply chain, industrial practitioners tend to lack knowledge on data analytics and complex stochastic system risk management. It not only impacts public health safety, but also leads to high risk of failures and financial loss. To improve the industry practice, our multidisciplinary team composed of Northeastern’s researchers in both industrial Engineering and biochemistry, Biopharmaceutical Analysis Training Lab (BATL), and public health regulators collaborates to develop an integrated educational platform to promote research, training and learning for students and practitioners. Basically, the research development in biopharma production and supply chain risk management is driven by practical problems and critical needs in the industry. Then, multidisciplinary educational and training programs, including hands-on training, are introduced to seamlessly transform new knowledge to skilled workforce and industry practice. Therefore, the proposed integrated research, education and training platform can effectively facilitate the progress of Biomanufacturing Industry.

Innovations in Teaching: Reframing the Problem

Implementing the Wright State Model for Engineering Mathematics at University of Detroit Mercy| Shuvra Das, University of Detroit Mercy

It is well known that many motivated and capable students abandon engineering programs when they encounter difficulties with the Calculus sequence. This results in the profession losing out on talented engineers. Engineering educators have worked on a variety of approaches to alleviate this problem. A fairly well-known approach, first proposed by faculty from Wright State University, involves teaching an Engineering Mathematics class to freshmen engineering students. This class, typically taught by engineers (and not mathematicians), covers only those topics from the entire Calculus curriculum that are actually used in early engineering courses such as Physics, Statics, Dynamics, Circuit Theory, etc. Passing this course allows students to continue into freshmen and sophomore level engineering classes while they are still continuing to finish the traditional sequence of Calculus courses. This class was recently added to the engineering curriculum at University of Detroit Mercy. In this paper the author will present the course content and the experience of teaching it to the engineering students along with its impact on retention, and student success. Specifically, the ability of these students to handle engineering science courses without having finished the calculus sequence will be discussed with data from the initial offerings.

Visualizing Derivatives of Functions of a Complex Variable and the Holomorphic Decomposition of the Derivatives of Mappings between Two Dimensional Spaces| Andrew Grossfield, Vaughn College of Technology

Engineering students in their courses such as fluid dynamics, electromagnetic theory, thermodynamics and potential theory see a need to study the theory of functions of a complex variable. The domain of these functions consists of values of complex numbers, z = x+ iy. The result of performing operations on z is to yield complex values, w = u(x, y) + iv(x, y). As ordinary functions have derivatives it seems that these complex variable functions can also have derivatives. The functions of a complex variable that have a derivative are called “holomorphic.” Very soon the texts continue to define holomorphic as functions which satisfy the Cauchy-Reimann equations.

These equations both describe and obscure the amazing and magnificent property of holomorphicity. A sensitive student might wonder, “Where did these equations come from?” , “What do they mean?” “What led Cauchy and Reimann to these equations?”

This paper will attempt to provide a common sense introduction to the theory of complex variables, answer these questions and additionally treat such questions as:.

Are functions of a complex variable “functions”?
How can these “functions” be visualized?
How are these “functions” related to conformal maps?
Where do these “functions” fit in the general scheme of multivariable calculus?

The theory of complex variable functions has a special place in the extension of ordinary calculus to multivariable calculus.  The algebra is almost the same as ordinary algebra but the visualizations are those of non-linear mappings between a two dimensional domain and a two dimensional range. These are the simplest mappings between spaces both of whose dimensions are greater than one and whose conformal streamlines are spectacularly beautiful and wonderful to contemplate. A review of the simple bilinear or Möbius transformations is included.

The paper continues to examine a second set of mappings called anti-holomorphic mappings. We then show all real smooth mappings from a 2-dimensional space to a 2-dimensional space can be uniquely decomposed into the sum of a holomorphic mapping and an anti-holomorphic mapping.

Maximizing Student Creativity in Complex Wastewater Engineering| Luke Plante, United States Military Academy

While wastewater treatment in the United States is currently aimed at achieving pollutant discharge limits, advances in biochemical treatment are shifting the industry’s focus to energy and nutrient recovery. Recovering nutrients from wastewater may very well be required for future wastewater treatment plants. Indeed, the term “wastewater treatment plant” is already changing to “water resource recovery facility.” An emphasis on fundamentals to enhance the educational focus on current biochemical treatment methods could best prepare our students for success in a future requiring different techniques than those commonly used at this time. Identifying oxidation states of various forms of carbon and nitrogen found in nature, various industries, and agriculture, as well as common electron donors and acceptors in reduction-oxidation reactions involving these elements will be essential for environmental engineers who will develop and implement new wastewater remediation approaches. Teaching common reduction-oxidation equations using a number line may help students visualize and quantify energy requirements associated with carrying out these chemical reactions, and it can prepare students for a future requiring new treatment aims and strategies. Elements gaining or losing electrons can be identified, the elements’ oxidation states can be identified, and the applicable atoms can be plotted on a number line on their oxidation states. Changes in oxidation states occurring in reduction-oxidation reactions can be depicted on the number line using arrows to show the initial oxidation states of the atoms changing to their final states. Diagrams of electron orbitals along the number line can also help students visualize electron gain or loss. Here, we assessed classroom implementation of a number line in teaching environmental reduction-oxidation reactions compared to other teaching methods. Preferences for different teaching tools were compared, and the concept of there being one “best way” to teach this topic was explored among several tools for teaching reduction-oxidation reactions.

Introducing Kinematic Fundamentals of Strain Wave Gear for Robotic Arm Joint| Zhiyuan Yu, Pennsylvania State University

The strain wave gear is a special type of mechanical gearing system that has unique characteristics comparing with cycloidal drives or planetary gears. It has only three basic components, as shown in Figure 1 a-c, with advantages of compactness, zero backlash, high precision, and high gear ratio from 30:1 to 320:1. It’s the key component for a robotic arm joint. Recent years, the availability of robotic arm increases substantially due to its important role in automation, so the high-performance strain wave gear is also in need.

On the other hand, the strain wave gear is not covered in any textbook for Machine Design, Mechanism, and Machine Dynamics. This paper will introduce the kinematic fundamentals of the strain wave gear used for robotic arm joint. Three topics will be covered. First, systematic method to calculate gear ratio for different types of the strain wave gear. Second, the unique tooth geometry used for strain wave gears to maintain the conjugacy of meshing teeth. Third, typical materials and manufacturing process to make such gears. The goal is to break the barrier between applications in robotic arm industry and engineering education in academia.

Integrating Technology into the Classroom: Electronics

Transition to Object-Oriented Programming (TOOP): An Innovative and Hands-On Introduction to Linux, OOP in C++, and Arduinos Using EMoRo| Joseph Benin, US Coast Guard Academy

[name] established a Core Curriculum Review Task Force in 2011 that submitted recommendations with necessary changes to [name’s] Core Curriculum. A key recommendation of the Task Force included adding a freshman year course on computer-based problem solving that would cover modeling problems and using Microsoft Excel and MathWorks Matlab . However, curriculum overlap within Electrical Engineering and Cyber Systems’ sophomore year Introduction to Computer Programming covering Matlab and C++ presented the Faculty with the challenge of adapting this course while retaining C++ content. Consequently, using ABET best practices as its guiding principle, a second Program Review was held in the summer of 2017 where it was decided that a 2.0 credit course that included both Linux and C++ would be the best option. This paper presents in detail the conception, design and implementation of a 2.0 credit, highly-interactive and hands-on course titled Transition to Object Oriented Programming (TOOP). The paper specifically discusses the adoption of  a home-grown Training Wheels platform within the Ubuntu operating system running as a virtual machine , C++ programming with Eclipse integrated development environment (also within Ubuntu), and finally the Arduino at Heart EMoRo robot .

Integrating the Hardware-Software Co-design Concept in an Introductory Digital Design Course| Pong Chu, Cleveland State University

Hardware-software co-design incorporates hardware components and software components in a single design effort. It divides the computation tasks between the software and the customized hardware. The resulting system includes a processor, which realizes the “general-purpose” housekeeping functions, and a collection of hardware accelerators, which perform computation-intensive functions and specialized I/O operations. The modern FPGA (field programmable gate array) devices provide the “hardware programmability” and make this scheme more relevant and accessible.

Most computer engineering curricula follow a “layered model,” in which transistor, logic gate, module, processor, operating system, and application programs constitute the individual layers. The software development and the hardware design are covered by separate courses in isolation. The subject of software-hardware co-design is normally offered as a senior- or graduate-level elective course and thus many students are not exposed to this subject. We introduce this concept in an introductory digital design course via the end-of-semester case studies on a pre-configured platform. The case studies are carefully selected custom accelerators and special-purpose I/O controllers. They incorporate the basic digital design topics and demonstrate how to integrate software and hardware in the same system and how the customized hardware and the software complement each other.

The pre-designed hardware platform is a simple computer system with five basic I/O peripherals, which are a timer core, a UART (universal asynchronous receiver-transmitter) core, a general-purpose input core (GPI) core, a general-purpose output core (GPO) core, and a reserved hardware accelerator (HA) slot. The FPGA vendor’s soft-core processor (such as Altera’s Nios II or Xilinx’s MicroBlaze) and IP cores can be used for this purpose. The entire system is done in advance and provided to students. The HA slot functions as a “placeholder.” In the subsequent development, the students only need to design a special purpose I/O core or a simple hardware accelerator and insert it into the slot. This article discusses the setup of the hardware and software platforms, provides a detailed description of one case study -- an ultrasonic distance sensor controller core, and lists other possible project ideas.

How IoT and Raspberry Pi Technology Can Enhance Students’ Learning Opportunities in Technology| James Mallory, RIT / NTID

The innovation of the Raspberry Pi microcomputer, an inexpensive, ubiquitous, Linux based platform will change how we do business in the world of IoT and the educational technology field. The Information and Computing Studies Department has used Raspberry Pi devices and IoT technology to significantly enhance students’ learning. The AAS degree students were assigned to replace the Lego Mindstorm NXT controllers with their smart cars using a Raspberry Pi controlled module which they designed. By using the Raspian Pi Operating System, a user friendly program called Scratch and some off-the shelf interfacing the students were able to design and implement a successful smart car. Wi-Fi options made programming the cars more robust. Raspberry Pi continues to be developed and revised, and its popularity should ensure ready access well into the foreseeable future for the smart car activity. The author’s research, development and testing will show the their results with using Raspian OS, Raspberry Pi and two Mindstorms interfaces for the Raspberry Pi.

Enhanced students' experience in VLSI Design through hands-on learning with an industry standard tool| Puteri Megat Hamari, Minnesota State University, Mankato

A VLSI design course which introduces the theory, concepts and practice of VLSI design using an industry standard Computer Aided Design (CAD) software, SynopsysTM has been offered at the XXX since spring 2015. The adoption of this advanced CAD allows students to be exposed to industry standard methodologies to design and layout VLSI designs. Typically in industry, engineers are given hours of training to learn the software. The opportunity to use an industry level software to perform their designs and learn a valuable skill that is marketable motivated the students to spend many hours working on their own to increase their familiarity with the software. This paper describes the instructor’s success in using hands-on-learning with an industry standard software to increase the students’ interest in pursuing a greater understanding of the course subject and to work on designs that are more complicated than in previous classes. The sophistication of their designs and their greater understanding is reflected in the gate count and density of their layouts as well as the feedback given through an anonymous survey.

Engaging Students to Enhance Personal Learning

The importance of including recognition of patterns activities in learning problem-solving during class time|

“Why are we studying limits?” “How would I calculate  without a calculator?” “There are several trigonometric formulas, how can I memorize them?” These are few of the frequent questions asked by engineering students who seek the help of the Learning Strategist. Memorizing concepts and/or formulas without understanding their origin is common among engineering students. Students usually discard how formulas became in such form, and they do not allocate time to attempt and find patterns that connect various formulas. Investing time to study these formulas is rewarding yet it has a steep learning curve. However, once mastered, understanding the derivation of commonly used formulas and mathematical patterns saves students’ energy and time by giving them tools to more quickly solve difficult engineering problems. In this session, we will demonstrate the process of problem-solving and pattern finding through a fun activity that can be utilized in lectures or tutorials. This activity demonstrates the importance of finding patterns and how to extend these findings into solutions. Through recognition of patterns, students can develop higher order of thinking skills and the ability to derive formulas from their skeletal form. The goal of this project is to obtain analyses of the impact of having professors including pattern finding activities within their classrooms.

Implementing gamification in engineering bridge programs: A case study exploring the use of the Kahoot! Application| Christian Lopez, the Pennsylvania State University

This work introduces a case study in which the gamified application Kahoot! was used in an engineering bridge program. Students’ feedback and perception of the application and its game elements are analyzed. Moreover, students’ Hexad player type is asses to gain a better understanding of how their player type correlates to their perception of the game elements implemented. Gamification (i.e., the use of game elements in non-game contexts) has shown great potential for improving the learning performance and motivation of students. Nowadays, there exist several gamification applications that facilitate the implementation of game elements in educational environments. These applications allow educators to implement different game elements (e.g., Leaderboards, Points) into their learning activities. However, several studies indicate that a game element that positively impacts an individual’s performance and motivation might not improve or even worsen the performance and motivation of another. While researchers have studied the effects of gamification in educational environments, they tend to overlook how students’ traits confound the effects that game elements have on improving their motivation. In light of this, the authors present a case study in which the gamified application Kahoot! is employed and students’ perception of the game elements and the application used, as well as their Hexad player type is asses. The results indicate that students felt motivated by the application. Out of the elements implemented the Leaderboard was rated as the most motivating and the Points as the most fun. However, students with a Hexad player type of Socialiser tended to rate the Team-mode element (i.e., cooperation) as the most fun. These results reveal that individuals do respond differently to gamification and show the potential that the Hexad scale has on advancing personalized applications. Finally, the lessons learned and the insights gained from the students’ feedback are presented.

Helping Students Learn from their Mistakes| Carl Lund, University at Buffalo

A reaction engineering course, taught by the same instructor over a 30 year span, primarily involves problem solving via mathematical modeling. It is well-established that goal-directed practice coupled with targeted feedback is critical to developing mastery in tasks like problem solving. As such, the final course score of students who completed 100% of all assigned homework (the 100% group) might be expected to be higher, on average, than all other students. In fact, over the first 20 years, the distribution of final course scores for the 100% group was only slightly better (average, 79.4; standard deviation, 8.8) than that for the other students (average, 73.8; standard deviation, 12.8). During this period, the course was taught using a traditional lecture format and homework assignments were graded on the basis of obtaining the correct solution.

Hypothesizing that insufficient practice/feedback was one underlying cause, the course was “flipped” so that students had greater opportunity for ungraded practice and feedback to build mastery before their learning was assessed. During the first 6 years as a flipped class, homework was still graded on the basis of obtaining the correct solution. During that period, the final course score distribution for the 100% group improved (average, 82.0; standard deviation, 7.7). Changing the basis for grading homework from “correctness” to effort during the next three years, with the class still flipped, did not lead to further improvement. Suspecting that the students were not receiving sufficient and properly targeted feedback, homework assignments were modified to include the use of a follow-up “homework wrapper” that guided students through a self-analysis of their submitted homework solutions. The resulting distribution for the 100% group further improved (average, 85.0; standard deviation, 10.2), though the sample size is smaller.

A Student Centered, Active Learning Approach to the Delivery of a Visiting Professional Lecture Series| Anthony Vannozzi, Wentworth Institute of Technology

The visiting lecturer, and the passive learning that this model evokes, has been a cornerstone of academic and scholarly pursuits for centuries.  Utilizing a structured active learning approach to the planning and execution of a traditional weekly lecture series, students took full ownership of each week’s lecture. Faculty involvement shifted from active planner and host to merely keeping a list of lecture details provided by students.  This shifting of responsibility to the students changed the focus of the lecture series experience from a passive weekly event to a student-centered activity, the goal of which was to make their week of hosting successful.

At the conclusion of the lecture series, students were asked to complete a brief questionnaire regarding: 1) The lecture topics; 2) The key active learning tasks, and; 3) Their perceptions about how the topics and tasks related to both their civil engineering education and their careers in civil engineering. Trends in the data indicate that including an active learning component in a traditional passive lecture series adds value for students in two worthwhile ways.  The first being an increased awareness of less traditional, yet critically important, professional communication skills and second, students are able to develop a sense of self efficacy in a public facing aspect of professional life.

Overall the structured active learning approach to the planning and execution of a traditional weekly lecture series by the students was a success. The students found that both the planning/execution of their weekly lecture and attending the lectures offered by their peers to be a valuable experience.

Enhancing Leadership Skills

The Engineers' Orchestra: a Conductorless Orchestra for Developing 21st Century Professional Skills| Diana Dabby, Olin College of Engineering

Reaching one’s full potential embodies much of human aspiration, yet in general, the student engineer is not born an experienced team player or communicator, both necessary for effective leadership. In fact, engineers may be predisposed to the opposite side of the psychological spectrum. Research has shown they often suit a cognitive style known as field-independence, preferring solitary work and non-social environments. But industry and government continue to call for the cultivation of professional skills, i.e., leadership, teamwork, and communication, due to the increasing size and complexity of 21st century engineering projects.

As is well-known anecdotally, engineering schools harbor large percentages of musicians. Brain research has shown that music-making has endowed these engineer musicians with neurological benefits that already prime them for leadership, teaming, and communicative roles; thus they are excellent contenders for meaningful professional lives.

A project-based learning lab that builds upon the musical ability of student engineers can help cultivate these professional skills. Such a lab now exists in the form of a conductorless orchestra—an ensemble, minus conductor—that features engineering students in collaborative, communicative, and leadership roles. A four-year study tracking professional skills in an undergraduate conductorless orchestra ‘lab’ demonstrates engineering student development in teamwork and communication. This makes sense since they have to practice both to ensure successful performances. Yet effective teamwork and communication constitute two widely acknowledged traits of skilled leadership. Why not give our engineer-musicians an orchestra to call their own— a conductorless orchestra where they practice these professional skills in a large team environment—while doing something they love—music? A rationale and blueprint for a conductorless orchestra now exists that can apply to diverse engineering schools, large and small, throughout the United States.

Soft Skills for Engineers: Understanding Employers' Expectations and Perceptions| Hirudayaraj Malar, RIT

Even though technical skill requirements have increased with changing technology, the need to develop professional skills of 21st century engineering graduates has also drawn attention in recent years. In recent decades, employers have placed primacy on the importance of engineers’ professional, or soft skills, proficiency. Echoing the concern of employers, the Accreditation Board of Engineering and Technology (ABET) has clearly articulated expectations for inclusion of soft skills proficiency within engineering education programs. However, research on specific proficiency requirements for non-technical skills or soft skills in technical fields such as engineering are rare. In this study therefore, we examined employer expectations for soft skills capabilities among entry-level engineers.  Specifically, we investigated the gap between the employer expectations and employer observed proficiency of soft skills for entry-level engineers. Surveys were administered to 1200 employers of recent engineering graduates. We evaluated 26 soft skills employers described as important.  Our findings identified 24 of those items with a statistically significant difference between the level of importance and the perception of proficiency. Based on our findings, we recommend which soft skills could be important to include and reinforce in engineering education curriculum.

Meeting the Needs of Industry via a Computer Numerical Control Concentration in a Mechanical Engineering Technology Curricula| Michael Martin, Northern Michigan University

Recent engineering education research has concluded that most engineering curricula do not promote attainment of many skills desired in practicing engineers. One such skill required by a segment of industry is proficiency in computer numerical control (CNC) programming. Based on a recommendation from XXXXX Engineering Technology Department’s Industrial Advisory.

Board, the department implemented a CNC concentration for the Mechanical Engineering Technology (MET) bachelor’s degree program in 2010. The CNC concentration is one of five concentration choices the students have, and they take these classes primarily in their junior and senior years. The CNC concentration consists of 14 credits focused on CNC programming and other manufacturing topics. This concentration complements a strong core of engineering fundamentals courses.

Student outcomes since the inception of the CNC concentration have been studied. It has been determined that the CNC concentration is one of the more popular choices among students, with many of the graduates utilizing CNC programming skills in their entry level positions. A higher percentage of graduates with the CNC concentration were employed in the engineering field 6 months after graduation, and with higher average salaries, than their counterparts with other concentrations in the same degree program. Additionally, there is strong anecdotal evidence that once students with this knowledge got out in the workforce, it created additional demand from employers that were pleased in how the students were able to contribute immediately upon hire.

Short Writing Assignments within a Laboratory Course to Improve Understanding and Interest in Course Material| Matthew Rhudy, Penn State Berks

Writing exercises incorporated within technical courses has been shown to be effective in improving critical thinking among engineering students. Specifically, short writing assignments can be implemented within upper level engineering courses to deepen student understanding of concepts. These assignments, while considered within some upper level courses, are not commonly implemented within laboratory courses, which instead typically use laboratory report assignments. Since students in our program already take another course which uses traditional lab reports, it is desirable to introduce some unique writing assignments to help develop their practical skills for their careers. This study assesses the effectiveness of introducing unique short writing assignments into the dynamic systems laboratory course which traditionally involved full laboratory reports as deliverables. The hypothesis of this work is that the shortened writing assignments will force students to think carefully about their words and effectively improve their learning within the course. Specifically, a short report, written abstract, technical email, graphical abstract, and oral presentation were considered within the dynamic systems laboratory course as an alternative to traditional laboratory reports. After completing each of these assignments, students within the course were given a Likert-scale survey to provide feedback on the various assignments. Survey results indicated that students were generally receptive to these new assignments. None of the students who completed the survey selected disagree or strongly disagree to the prompts “I feel that the short writing assignments improved my learning within the course” and “I enjoyed learning about a variety of different writing styles.” Anecdotally, qualitative improvements were noted in the student responses due to the more focused assignments.

Innovations in Teaching: Course/Curriculum Design

Development and Implementation of an Innovative Hybrid Mechanical Engineering Course| Salah Badjou, Merrimack College

This paper discusses the successful implementation of a hybrid pilot course of Engineering Statics, which is a standard sophomore-level engineering course required of mechanical and mechatronics engineers. In a recent paper, we have shown that engineering and the sciences are lagging behind most other disciplines in implementing online and distance-learning education as there are comparatively fewer online and hybrid programs in engineering compared to non-science fields. We have found that the main reason is that engineering and the sciences require extensive use of hands-on physical laboratory experiments that are harder to provide in an online or hybrid environment. Traditional science and engineering education are designed to be delivered onsite where laboratories are centralized and experiments can be cost-effectively performed. Though several creative approaches to providing adequate lab experience in online and hybrid programs have been tried, there is, to-date, no well-developed proven method that integrates the best practices. In Fall 2017, we designed an innovative pilot course and delivered it in a hybrid format. All lectures and recitations were delivered online and via live videoconferences, using the Moodle Course Management System (CMS) and lectures were available as pdf and PowerPoint files and recorded video presentations. The laboratory component involved onsite experiments proctored by a Teaching Assistant. To assess the quality and suitability of the hybrid course, three student surveys were conducted one, two, and three months into the semester. At the end of the semester, a thorough assessment of the experience was conducted, including feedback from all stakeholders; students, teaching assistant, instructor, department chair, and CMS administrator and consultant. This assessment concluded that the experience was highly successful and could therefore provide a proven model for the teaching of engineering and science online and in a hybrid format.

Computer Security in Undergraduate Curriculum| M. Islam, Farmingdale State College

Digital information and infrastructure are crucial components in every aspects of today’s world. There is a huge need of security professionals with expertise to analyze the security threats, design and develop security tools, and manage and update security architecture. A computer security technology program is developed for undergraduate curriculum following the industry needs and standards. Students will be trained on the latest technologies in the field with applied learning objectives so that they can address real-life security challenges.

The Impact of Periodic Low Stakes Testing on Environmental Engineering Education| Kyle Murray, United States Military Academy

Perhaps the most fundamental goal in education is achieving student retention of new information in order to accomplish learning outcomes. Scores of educational studies coupled with a plethora of books and papers over recent decades attempt to identify ideal educational practices which enable students to better retain material taught in the classroom. From these, numerous conclusions further support a range of influential factors that impact student retention, such as the method of instruction, classroom environmental conditions, relationship dynamics between students and teachers, and assessment or testing patterns. The focus of this study centers on this last factor, testing patterns, and how student retention can be improved in order to better accomplish learning outcomes. In our study, we examine and compare the overall value of periodic open and closed-note formative assessments in an engineering course. We analyzed student performance for 202 students enrolled in an undergraduate environmental engineering course that covers several major topics to include environmental engineering fundamentals and chemistry, water and wastewater treatment methods and design, as well as air pollution modeling and control. This semester-long study included a comparison of student performance on major graded events, including midterm and course-end comprehensive examinations along with final term grades between class sections completing open-note, closed-note, and no additional formative assessments. Our study indicates that the type of testing, open versus closed-note, did not have a statistically different impact on overall course performance. However, the study did show a statistically significant increase of 2.97-4.87% in course performance and final averages between sections completing either type of periodic testing, versus sections completing no additional testing. This finding suggests that formative assessments not only serve to achieve better retention in an environmental engineering course, but further support current academic literature asserting that testing in the classroom generally results in improved student performance.

Integrating Technology into the Classroom: Modeling/Simulations

Experiences of Teaching Mechatronic System Modeling| Shuvra Das, University of Detroit Mercy

Overwhelming majority of innovations happen at the intersections of disciplines.  New products and improvement of existing products are being designed through synergistic integration of multi-disciplinary concepts.  For example, in today’s automobiles purely mechanical systems have been replaced by “by-wire” devices that are software controlled, lighter, more efficient and reliable.  While engineering disciplines are merging seamlessly in real world products, academic silos are still mostly intact.  Most engineering students are still graduating with degrees in traditional engineering disciplines.

At University of Detroit Mercy, we have tried to break down some of these silos through the launching of the Robotics and Mechatronics Systems Engineering major.  One of the mandatory courses in this major is a course on Mechatronic Systems Modeling.  This course uses a technique of power flow called bond graphs to model mechatronic systems.  This technique is not discipline specific and students with different disciplinary background can easily understand and master it.  Recently, the use of Simscape, a MATLAB/Simulink tool for physical system modeling has also been added to this course.  The use of these two tools provide substantial training for students to take on complex system modeling tasks.

This paper will describe the course content and structure, the modeling methodologies, various projects that the students have carried out, some of the lessons learned, and other off-shoot activities that have resulted from this course.     

ANSYS Simulation of Piezoelectric Patch for Energy Harvesting| Qing Li, University of New Haven

The goal of vibration-based energy harvesting is to power small electronic devices by using the normally wasted vibrational energy in the environment. Piezoelectric materials have the capability to produce a voltage when deformed, or they will deform when subjected to an external electrical voltage. This effect makes piezoelectric material a perfect device to be used in energy harvesting mechanism where the vibration energy from the host structure can be absorbed and converted to electrical energy.

As illustrated in the figure, the piezoelectric energy harvester in our study is a cantilever beam attached with a piezoelectric layer. The cantilever beam is mounted on a vibrating structure and the dynamic stress induced in the piezoelectric material generates a voltage output across the electrodes connected to the piezoelectric layers. The electrical energy can be stored in a storage device for potential use.

The modeling of a piezoelectric harvester requires in-depth knowledge of mechanics, electric circuitry, and material engineering. In current literature, overly simplified models are commonly used for research analysis. This project focuses on developing a simulation model of the piezoelectric harvester using the ANSYS workbench simulation software. There are quite many advantages of using ANSYS simulation results as opposed to traditional mathematical modelling. ANSYS software can produce relative accurate model. The simulation procedure also greatly simply the modelling effort.

Utilizing various tools of CAD Solid Modeler for Kinematic and Kinetic Study of Mechanisms| Prathivadi Ravikumar, Western Illinois University

Kinematic and kinetic study of mechanisms is a very important and challenging subject for teaching and learning by engineering students. Until the advent of CAD software, available traditional tools limited the effectiveness of teaching/learning of this important subject. This paper focuses on the specific tools available in current CAD modelers and how they are used to study the kinetics and kinematics of mechanisms. Use of sketch entities in CAD modelers to understand and solve problems in the synthesis of mechanisms are illustrated. Verifying the synthesized mechanism and investigating them further through solid modeling tools of CAD modelers are discussed. Use of tool such as assemblies, exploded views, and animation are discussed for effective communication of synthesized designs are demonstrated. Utilization of advanced motion study capabilities of solid modelers to assess the kinematic and kinetic parameters such as position, velocity, acceleration, forces, and torques are discusses. Examples of students’ work are presented to demonstrate the effectiveness of the various CAD modeler tools and methods discussed in this paper.

Enhancing Student Learning in Fluid Power through Software and Pneumatics Circuit Connecting| Liyong Sun, Penn State Erie

This course objective of Fluid Power is to introduce engineering technologists to the principles of fluid flow, hydraulic, pneumatics, and control systems. Comparing with pneumatics circuit, hydraulic circuit is more expensive and requires more maintenance. However, there are lots of similarity between hydraulic and pneumatics circuit. Piston, direction control valve and, flow control are the major components of both circuits. Thus in the lab of Fluid Power, students will benefits from the hand on experience of pneumatics circuit, even though there is no hydraulic circuit in the lab. Before the students start to connect the pneumatics circuit, they first need to generate the circuit in Automation Studio, which is a powerful simulation package that can be used to model hydraulic and pneumatic circuits, as well as electrical, logic and other control circuits. Students use this software in the lab portion of fluid power to simulate hydraulic and pneumatics circuits, helping them to visualize what the circuit does. They follow up by building the circuit in the test bench to see if it does what it is supposed to do. Generating a pneumatics circuit in Automation Studio can be very overwhelming to students if there are lots of components in the circuit. The new approach to this problem is to build the pneumatics circuit in several steps. The first step is to build a simple circuit to move the piston. The next step is to add more components such as direction control valves. Keep on adding components until the whole pneumatics circuit is complete. Several pneumatics circuits are demonstrated using this step by step approach. This step by step approach will help students to generate the circuit more quickly. Common issues of building the pneumatics circuit in the test bench are also introduced.

Gaining a Broader Perspective

Revolutions, Regulations, and Realities: Comparing Licensure and Accreditation in the US and Canada| Brandiff Caron, Concordia University

In this piece we describe some recent successes in pushing forward a new (and we believe, revolutionary) kind of engineering education at our home University.  We situate these successes within the highly regulated context of engineering education in Canada.  We end with a reflection on how some of the realities of engineering education in Canada often sit uncomfortably with the aspirations of those involved.  It is our hope that this piece will provoke thoughtful comparisons and contrasts between the US and Canadian engineering education experiences; especially with regard to those engineering educators interested in working towards the pedagogical changes required to prepare for engineers for the future.

The engineer of 2020 is currently working her way through her degree.  Having reached this much anticipated moment, we find ourselves, as engineering educators, obliged to reflect on how well we have lived up to the promises of the “engineer of 2020.”    In this paper we reflect on the work left unfinished and explore ways to think about what comes next.  We seek to look beyond this moment and to imagine how the engineer of 2050 will be shaped.  In particular, we explore the role of licensure and accreditation in shaping the pathways to engineering practice in 2050.  To get at the multiple futures and the myriad of choices and alternatives that exist, we compare the American context of licensure and accreditation in engineering with the Canadian context.  In doing so, we hope to foreground and highlight some of the choices that are reified through these systems.  We pay particular attention to those choices involving the social and ethical components of professional engineering.  In foregrounding these choices, we hope to make evident alternatives and to suggest potential changes that may better pave the road to 2050.

Assessment of Progressive Learning of Ethics in Engineering Students Based on the Model of Domain Learning| Sadan Kulturel-Konak, Penn State

This work presents the results of an assessment instrument designed to assess the progressive learning of ethics in the engineering curriculum at different stages known as acclimation, competency and proficiency, and to determine the relation of the development stages with three components that contribute to learning: interest, knowledge and strategic processing.  The questions in the instrument were defined following the Model of Domain Leaning (MDL) to capture the level of ethics skill development.  The questionnaire was administered to engineering students of increasing class standing (i.e., freshmen to senior).  The results show that the instrument successfully captures the ethics skill development in engineering education taking into consideration the components and stages of learning described by the MDL framework.

Assessment of Mechanical Engineering Pedagogy: How to Effectively Merge Theory and Applications| Austin Thomas, University of New Haven

In the mechanical engineering profession, knowledge of theoretical principles as well as business sense and experience with contemporary technology is crucial to success. In higher education, the focus tends to be more on instilling in mechanical engineering students a conceptual understanding of math and sciences and less on demonstrating how the concepts are used. The rationale behind this type of pedagogy is that if students comprehend governing theory, then they will therefore be able to discover its applications on their own and adapt as technology changes. This approach can unfortunately have the consequence of students struggling to see the relevance of certain principles and therefore not fully internalizing them.

Many educators have experimented with active learning techniques in order present palpable demonstrations of concepts such as mechanics of materials [1] and mechatronics [2] and have seen positive results. To prepare mechanical engineers for the working world, it is necessary to demonstrate to them where concepts from class may arise. One way to do this is to engage them with active learning methods through which students acquire not only the knowledge but the technical skills that come in handy in industry.

The focus of this thesis is on mechanical engineering undergraduate students’ appraisals of the value of the information covered in their classes as well as of their own ability to relate topics from class to their own careers. These evaluations may point to areas of mechanical engineering education where real-world examples, hands-on engagement, and/or exposure to technology are desired. An outcome of this thesis would be a list of recommendations for pedagogical practices associated with preparing mechanical engineering students for the modern industry. By assessing students from various academic institutions with diverse backgrounds, common trends may arise which would expand the scope of inference of the findings of this research.

Do the Universities Have a Designed Infrastructure to Measure the Student Outcomes? A Model Offer| Ugur Zel         

The Engineering Accreditation Commission (EAC) of the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology revised its Criterion 3 student outcomes in fall 2017. Student outcomes represent the competencies we expect from students to have before they graduate from universities. When we talk about an “outcome” we mean an “observable behavior” which also forms a dimension of a competency. Generally, universities focus on measuring “knowledge”, also a dimension of a competency which is the easiest to measure. Do the universities have a well-designed infrastructure to measure the student outcomes which are not related only with knowledge? The verbs used in Criterion 3 student outcomes like; apply, design, conduct, use, communicate, function are mostly action based verbs and needs to be measured by using different tools other than brain-based assignments like written/oral exam, project or term paper.

In this study, a draft model of measuring the student outcomes is offered. This model may be named as “Outcome Based Assessment (OBA)”. OBA is a process where assessors work with a student to collect evidence of outcome (competence), using the benchmarks provided by the unit standards that comprise the Criterion 3. OBA process will be formed by different tools such as group exercise, simulations, analysis and presentation, brainstorming, role playing etc. The OBA process should be applied by professional assessors who have background on using the measurement tools. Of course, the faculty members’ observations in class and assignment results will be integrated to the student’s final report driven from OBA application(s).

Collecting results from all these different measurement tools, we can get better conclusions with higher validity. OBA applications should start at the second year of a 4 year program and students should be supported by another application called as “Development Center (DC)” which is designed to develop the areas of development identified during the OBA process. DCs should take place in the end of the 3rd and 4th year, so that students may have enough time to develop their development areas before graduation.

Lightning Talks

Pavement Design at Coast Guard Air Station Cape Cod | Cade Benson, Kali Borden, Olivia Holt, Thomas Jones, William Nelson; U.S. Coast Guard Academy

Coast Guard Air Station Cape Cod (ASCC) is the only Coast Guard Aviation facility in the northeast, and operates with MH-60T Jayhawk helicopters as well as HC-144A Ocean Sentry fixed-wing aircraft. ASCC is responsible for the waters between New Jersey to the Canadian border, totaling approximately 1100 km of coastline. The current pavement condition at ASCC is in need of repair due to various distresses on the taxiways and runways. The Coast Guard Academy Capstone Team has been assigned to investigate the current pavement condition, research the components that factor into the pavement design, and propose a viable solution for ASCC. In this report, possible pavement distresses, including Portland Cement Concrete and Asphalt Pavement, will be investigated with various rehabilitation and prevention methods. Design for the repair will be done in accordance with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the Unified Facilities Criteria (UFC) design standards. The loadings from the aircraft that utilize the airfield will be a primary factor of consideration when rehabilitating the runways and taxiways. Additionally, soil analysis will be crucial in determining the necessary methods in subgrade and base stabilization for the pavement rehabilitation.  The rating system used to analyze distresses will be Pavement Condition Index (PCI). Software such as PAVER will enable group members to analyze past PCI assessments and implement possible rehabilitation options.

U.S. Coast Guard Station Kings Point, Relocation of STA King's Point to Fort Totten | Kelli Franza, Jarred Jenkinson, Landon Klopfenstein, Johanna Moolenaar, Hayden Short; U.S. Coast Guard Academy

After the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center the mission of STA Kings Point expanded, significantly increasing the number of personnel assigned to the unit. As a result, current facilities are inadequate and hinder mission readiness. With an increased mission role and no place to expand at current location, a new proposed facility at a new location will be analyzed. The scope of the design will include a multi-mission station, boat maintenance facility, boat ramp, new roads and parking location, and adequate mooring at the existing pier.  The Coast Guard has land designated for the location of a new station at Fort Totten that will enable the crew to service the same area of responsibility (AOR). The new facility will simultaneously meet the operational needs of the station, as well as providing comfortable quarters and efficient work areas for the crew members. The proposed design alternatives include; design of a multi-mission building with an attached boat maintenance facility, and design of a multi-mission building renovating an existing structure on location as a boat maintenance facility. The station at Fort Totten will also require the renovation of a boat maintenance facility and construction of a boat ramp and parking lot. Imposing and changing environmental conditions associated with the Long Island Sound will influence the structural and geotechnical design of the project. The design will optimize space while also meeting space requirements set forth by the Coast Guard in order to best meet the desires and needs of the station. The building will also meet the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification to ensure a healthy, efficient, and cost-saving life-span. This Capstone project presents the design of a Multi-Mission station, which will offer a sustainable solution to Station Kings Point’s operational needs.

Encouraging Women in STEM through a Multi-Tiered Mentorship Program | Shannon Moffat, Sabine Hahn, Meagan Carnes, Anusuya Pal, Cristina DeOliveira; Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Worcester Polytechnic Institute has implemented the Women’s Research and Mentorship Program (WRAMP), a multi-tiered mentorship program for high school women from the local community and college undergraduates to engage in hands-on laboratory research with female graduate student mentors. This program funds five mentoring teams, each consisting of two high school students, one undergraduate student, and one graduate student working together in the graduate student’s lab. Graduate students design a hands-on project and assist high school students with executing it within their lab, thus gaining valuable experience in teaching and mentoring. The unique structure of the program also provides an opportunity to form a close-knit community of fellow female graduate students within WPI. This year, WRAMP expanded the program by introducing undergraduates to work alongside the graduate students to gain laboratory experience and learn more about graduate school, as well as to help the high school students explore their interests and prepare for college. Through this program, the high school students gain exposure to STEM careers and get hands-on experience in a laboratory, providing an opportunity to an underrepresented group within the surrounding Worcester community. This year, 40% of high school participants were from local Worcester public high schools, and 30% were women of color.

In addition, 80% of the undergraduates who participated were women of color. The 2.5-month-long program concludes with the high school women presenting a poster of the data that they collected and skills that they learned over the course of their project. Ultimately, the goal of this program is to provide a unique, multi-tiered female mentoring program to the WPI and greater Worcester community with the long-term goal of increasing the number of women, especially women of color, to pursue a career in a STEM field. Program outcomes for participants will be discussed in this presentation.

UBTalker: Improving Quality of Life Through Interdisciplinary Collaboration | Megan Yoerg, MacKenzie Bardsley, Corey Ropell, Ian Kaminer, William Phillips, Michael Mincone, Goktug Geneci, Himani Vishal Dodeja, Haya Vora, Samuel Marchant, Joshua Suttenberg, Thomas Depaola, Vaughn Shorter, Matthew Rwasenge, Zachary Tenenbaum; University at Buffalo

We work with developing an augmentative and alternative communication application, to be used for individuals with ALS, MS, and anyone with damage to their motor cortex or ability to communicate. We have worked in developing multiple views for the patients to use. These include a keyboard: where the patients can type out what they would like the program to speak, a history page: where we store everything that the patient has spoken through our program for easy accessibility, a phrases page: where the patient can store phrases that they will speak often for quick access, and an environmental controls page: where the patients can control the lights, television, and other electronics in their room. We are currently working towards easier usage for patients by adding functionalities like auto-scan: which scans over all the selectable items to assist when precise motion is difficult, auto-complete: which will suggest words that the program thinks the patient is trying to type so they can complete their phrases and thus speak faster, and text prediction: where the program will suggest which words it thinks the patient will type next so that they can form phrases quicker and as a result speak faster. Ease of use will also be added through various input methods. These extra input types will include eye gaze: where the software tracks the patient’s eye movements like a computer mouse, and brain-computer interface (BCI): which tracks the patient’s brainwaves to use thoughts as input for actions in the application. By allowing for multiple input types, the application will be able to be given to patients with varying degrees of motor function and communication abilities.

A Constrained Model Predictive Control Framework for Optimal Teaching Policy | Courtney Burris; University at Buffalo

A new framework, called Learning-By-Solving (LBS), based on tensor factorization and model predictive control (MPC) is proposed to optimize a teaching policy in Personalized Learning Systems (PLS). The proposed model enhances the current Latent Factor Analysis models and offers a new method framed as a constrained probabilistic tensor factorization problem. LBS contains a predictive model, which accounts for the effect of each given task on student learning and quantifies the gains from correctly and incorrectly answered questions, and a teaching policy optimizer, which finds the optimal sequence of questions for each student. To find personalized teaching policies, the corresponding sequential decision making is formulated as a Constrained Model Predictive Control (CMPC) problem. The MPC estimates students’ learning dynamics based on LBS and optimizes the personalized teaching policies. The results show that LBS predicts students’ performances very well and the CMPC substantially boosts knowledge gain and personalizes the optimal teaching policy.

Commonwealth Ave and University Ave. traffic study (Boston) | Anuja Kamat, Tugba Arsava, Olivia Murphy; Wentworth Institute of Technology

A Traffic Study was conducted to determine the effectiveness of pedestrian signals at the intersection of University Road at Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, MA where the Boston University Academy (BUA – high school) is located. Students at this high school use the cafeteria located across University Avenue. They cross this intersection multiple times a day to attend classes at Boston University. The school and parents were worried about traffic at this intersection and the traffic study was requested. For this study, first traffic counts were conducted from five different points to be able to get traffic data for each approach. Second, collected traffic volumes were compiled and inputted into a microscopic level simulation software, Aimsun version 8.1. Two different scenarios were coded and the performance of each scenario was compared to identify the effectiveness of proposed solution.  As a first scenario existing condition coded and as a second scenario (proposed-alternative) a network with a pedestrian signal control plan coded on University Road. Performance of the model was measured in terms of several measure of effectiveness, such as delay time (sec/mile), mean queue length (vehs), density (vehs/mile) and number of vehicles reaching to destination (vehs). As expected, delay time, density, and mean queue length all increase if a pedestrian signal group is added to the existing signal timing plan, but significant improvement provided in pedestrian safety during school hours. Moreover, Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) Warrants were reviewed and with further research, need for signalization is warranted. Based on simulation results, it was recommended that pretimed or adaptive pedestrian signal should be implemented to this intersection at least for 1 hour during BUA’s school day during their school year. Findings of this research was submitted to BUA and recently a pedestrian traffic light was installed at this intersection.


Innovations in Capstone Design

Providing a Intradisciplinary Team Experience for Off Track Students in a Senior Level Two Semester Capstone Design Course Sequence| Leonard Anderson, Wentworth Institute of Technology

Practicing Civil Engineers today must have the ability to work as a team member with other civil engineering sub-disciplines (Intradisciplinary) as well as with professionals from other fields (Interdisciplinary). One of the learning outcomes of the two-course capstone design sequence at _______ is an intradisciplinary team design experience.

In the first course of the capstone design sequence (CIVE4000), teams of five students develop and initiate the design of their original project with each project covering five different civil engineering sub-disciplines. Each student on the team is responsible for one of the technical areas of their project. During the laboratory sessions, the students must work together with the different civil engineering disciplines on their team as well as meeting with the faculty members/external collaborators to review their work. In the following semester, the same design team in the second capstone course (CIVE5500) complete the design of their project, present the project to technical reviewers, and write the final report.

When a student is off-track, providing the intradisciplinary team design experience is difficult and often requires the student to postpone graduation for an academic year. One student recently was in this scenario. In order not to postpone the student’s graduation more than one semester, the student joined an existing capstone group in CIVE5500. The student completed all the requirements of

CIVE4000 while interacting with the other team members who were enrolled in CIVE5500. The student then worked independently in the following semester to complete the requirements of CIVE5500. As reported by the student, the team experience and only graduating one semester beyond the student’s original graduation date proved to be very valuable experience. This paper presents the methodology of how an off-track student can be integrated into an existing capstone design group to provide the student with an intradisciplinary team design experience.

Design of a Solar-Powered Tennis-Ball-Fetching Robot in the Context of a Traditional Electrical Engineering Program| Salah Badjou, Merrimack College

This paper discusses the implementation of a multidisciplinary mechatronics capstone design project in the context of a traditional electrical engineering program in an undergraduate college.  Mechatronics is the synergistic combination of electrical, mechanical, and control engineering with computer science. Modern cost-effective and quality products are often intelligent mechatronic systems or involve mechatronic subsystems. Typical examples are robots.  Mechatronics is therefore of much interest to modern industry. The design of such systems requires a multidisciplinary systems approach that is not taught in traditional specialized engineering disciplines such as electrical and mechanical engineering. The traditional design approach follows the waterfall model, whereby the input from each engineering discipline is considered serially, in stages. This approach is recognized today as ineffective and costly to industry, as it results in designs that are not optimized. A mechatronics systems approach involves the simultaneous consideration and optimization of all aspects the design over its life cycle. The context and the general methodology followed, the challenges encountered, and the lessons learned in teaching electrical engineering capstone design in Academic year 2018-2019, using a multidisciplinary mechatronics systems approach, are discussed. This is followed by the presentation of a successful case study involving the design of a solar-powered tennis-ball fetching robot and the demonstration of the prototype that was developed. This experience could be used as a model for introducing a mechatronics systems design approach in traditional capstone design courses.

Realistic Capstone Design Experiences: Best Practices and Lessons Learned| Kris Schindler, University at Buffalo

The capstone design course is an integral component of the undergraduate experience for engineering students. It can be challenging to provide students with a robust experience that touches on the intangibles, such as professionalism, communication skills, and project management skills. The traditional approach is to provide students with a project that might be considered ideal in terms of demonstrating as many of the technical skills as possible which were taught during the student’s undergraduate career. A more realistic experience is the use of projects whereby students have to interact with a client to develop and build a working deliverable product to meet a specific need for the client. Projects such as these are open-ended, providing a more realistic experience. In this presentation, we provide an overview of the use of real projects used in the University at Buffalo’s Computer Engineering Capstone Design Course. Lessons learned and best practices will be discussed in the hopes that others can learn from our approach and provide a realistic capstone experience for their students. An experience where the students can not only demonstrate their skills, but also develop a keener sense of the subtleties of being a skilled, yet well-rounded engineer.

A Lie Detector Class Project to Prepare for Bioengineering Senior Capstone Design| Pun To Yung, Syracuse University

Capstone design at Syracuse University is a culminating course in which seniors apply their four years of engineering knowledge to solve client-driven real-world design problems, develop teamwork, entrepreneurship, and project management skills. Bioengineering students undertake a senior bioengineering laboratory course based on problem-based learning approach ahead of the capstone design experience. The course focuses on building a lie detector using a multitude of techniques from the core bioengineering curriculum.

Each team of two students are asked to design, build and validate a lie detector based on a number of physiological signals. Signals will be analyzed and displayed in mobile devices.

Topics include bioinstrumentation, signal analysis, finite-element simulation, biomechanics, computer-aided design, biotelemetric applications based on Internet of Things, and psychology. A number of physiological signals such as pulse rate, pulse-transit time, photoplethysmography, blood pressure, electromyography, body temperature are measured to determine if the subject lies or not. The final project showcase involves a virtual reality game. Each student is represented by an avatar in a virtual world carrying the same physiological signals. Students have to complete tasks in both the real world and virtual world. This PBL-based course helps students to drive their own learning through inquiry and work collaboratively to apply their knowledge to develop a prototype.

A statistical comparison of project scores across semesters revealed performance improvements in the subsequent senior capstone design. The efficacy of this course to prepare students for senior capstone design is evaluated based on the Kirkpatrick’s model. Reaction is assessed by perception surveys from students, faculty and clients. Learning is assessed by the knowledge, attitudes and skills gained. Behavior is assessed by the feedback and productivity from the capstone design course. Results are assessed by performance in the senior capstone design.

Innovations in Teaching: Increasing Retention and Participation

Zigzag through Engineering Design Process (EDP) | Dean Laury, RIT / NTID

In 2010, the [College 1]’s  Strategic Planning Committee (SP 2010) called for new associate + baccalaureate degree programs with other colleges at [Institute 1].  Since the program’s inception, 93 Deaf/Hard-of-Hearing (D/HoH) students who enrolled in the Applied Mechanical Technology-AAS (AMT) transfer degree program and twenty-one D/HoH AMT graduates all entered Mechanical/Manufacturing Engineering Technology-BS (MMFET) program. This study examines the Engineering Design Process (EDP), which is a systematic series of steps (ask, imagine, plan, create, and improve (test – redesign)) that D/HoH engineering students learn in their first course, NETS-101 Engineering Fundamentals.  The study asks: how critical is student engagement to a non-engineering D/HoH student?  The purpose of the investigation is to share best practices that result in non-engineering D/HoH students’ success. This is a qualitative study conducted among a few students, using sign language and verbal communication, during classroom activities.  The interview question responses related to decision making via the EDP tool (e.g., paired comparison, weighted benefit analysis) for D/Hoh students. The professor used a decision-making framework to determine the findings.  Results indicate that the EDP’s systematic series of steps, used in a clock-wise method, was the preferred strategy over a vertical-linear approach. It seems the clock-wise approach provided flexibility during the design process. Students began to cultivate troubleshooting skills, and were able to zig-zag among the series of steps.  Also, faculty-student mentoring/advising was the preferred student engagement element during the troubleshooting skills development phase (increasing self-efficacy).  The study did not address one component which is, how did students navigate the EDP series of steps in reality?  Also, the study doesn’t make a comparison between D/HoH and hearing students.  However, it is clear that EDP provided self-efficacy to D/HoH students’ troubleshooting skills; their grades improved and successful retention of the skills occurred.

Introducing a personal response system to one engineering technology course for enhancing student learning and engagement| Jiayue Shen, SUNY Polytechnic Institute

For many years, Conventional Education Method (CEM) is still primarily used in engineering technology classrooms.  The students are given lectures and expected to take notes and memorize the content. The instructor evaluates the class’ learning and engagement by periodically questioning a small number of students in a class. Due to the small sample size, the evaluation results may carry significant errors and disguise the real learning level of the questioned concepts. Additionally, since this method relies on repetition and memorization of information to educate students, the students typically will lose their attention after 15 minutes of a continuous lecture. Intentionally breaking the lecture into discrete segments may be an effective way to overcome these limitations associated with CEM. Most importantly, with the CEM, it is challenging to develop critical thinking skills, which are a highly desired ability for an engineering technology student.

To increase the in-class assessment and improve the students’ learning and engagement, the real-time online Personal Response System (PRS) provides an immediate solution. The PRS allows all the students to respond simultaneously to instructor’s questions, which in turn allows the instructor to assess the students’ learning and engagement in real time and adjust the teaching style and content accordingly.

In this method, we applied the real-time online PRS named Poll Everywhere to the “Electronic Principles” course. In total sixty questions were asked via PRS during the class time. According to the number of answered questions, the thirty-three participating students were divided into three groups: low (<20, N=7), middle (20-40, N=15), and high (>40, N=11) participation groups, independently. Afterward, the results were compared with the equivalent grade (including quiz, homework, and exam) of the three groups, the relation between the students’ learning and engagement was found. The results show that the grades increase with the increase of participation.

Multispectral Analysis of Farmers Crops, a Project Based Learning (PBL) Program| Stephen Wilkerson, York College of Pennsylvania

In this paper we examine the learning objectives of using drone aircraft for the multispectral analysis of farmer crops to increase yields while decreasing annual costs. More specifically we examine the Corn, soybean, winter wheat crop cycle dominating Maryland and Pennsylvania farms. This program is formulated as a project based learning initiative. In particular, the program is a capstone design (2) semester project that additionally has a design and build criteria as a requirement. The students need to complete this project to graduate and usually take the capstone design course in their senior year. Since this is within the Engineering and Computer Science curriculum at the college, many of the topics that the student will need to learn are well outside of their typical course requirements. In this paper we detail the approach to having undergraduate students research and master multiple technology areas and then how they apply them to the project’s main focus. We discuss individual motivational factors in a project where the student selection is based on their choice rather than academic criteria. We create a baseline set of learning objectives and then somewhat passively observe the progress of the program. As a spin off to this effort we have included a STEM drone racing program for younger middle and high school students. The object of this sub topic is to get students interested in the sciences. The hope is to continually fill the educational pipeline with motivated STEM students for the future. For the STEM program we highlight the learning objectives and outcomes as an indicator of the student’s interest and motivation in the topic.

Integrating Technology into the Classroom: Projects

Green Energy Challenge - From Green Building to Smart Building| Jimmy Ching-Ming Chen, Wayne State University

Environment impact and continuously increasing energy costs are driving the construction industry to pursue new design and technology alternatives. A thorough understanding of the science of building performances and effective design is required to achieve maximum energy efficiency and best cost-performance ratio. Therefore, a paradigm shift is needed in a university’s curriculum by adding new materials and endeavors to train future workforce facing the challenges of green energy construction. Students enrolled in the construction management program at University Engineering Technology Division are encouraged to participate in the annual ELECTRI International/NECA Student Chapter Competition on electrical construction managing projects. The main competition component is the challenge to propose an energy upgrade design for a facility providing community services to achieve a net zero facility by incorporating energy saving measures and distributed energy resources based on the unique needs of the buildings and climate. Students are expected to provide detailed technical solutions in the proposal by examining the past year utility expenses, planning the renovation design, estimating new system costs, and demonstrating energy efficiency improvements. In addition, students are required to seek funding sources, such as state grants and tax benefits.

In this paper, we present students’ competition projects, discuss the last projects’ assessments, and demonstrate new approaches and tools such as software introduced in the projects. The center is a non-profit human service agency that provides compassionate, expert comprehensive services to children and families impacted by abuse, developmental disabilities, and mental health challenges. The students have assessed existing conditions of the Center facilities and are making plans to save energy and costs for this year’s (2019) competition. In addition, we introduce DC power grid and smart building components in this year’s competition proposal for further improvement of energy efficiency.

Design of a Cost-Effective Wireless Sensor Network for Energy and Resource Optimization| Hiren Gami, Miami University – OH

In today’s world, sensors are everywhere! This paper proposes the use of motion sensors with Internet of Things (IoT) enabled devices to create smart Wireless Sensor Network (WSN). Normally, motion sensors act discretely to turn ON/OFF devices based on human/animal detection in the Field of View (FoV) of the sensor. However, by examining analog movement pattern from the sensor can reveal important information such as direction of travel and other valuable information about the underlying object movement. The analog wave pattern is processed via signal processing and time-series algorithm. Later, the processing outcomes fed machine learning algorithm to reveal the direction of a travel. The direction of movement is estimated with more than 95% of accuracy. In a test building site, multiple of such sensor modules are distributed throughout a building. These modules send incoming and outgoing movement data to the sensor fusion node connected to the data logging computer. The data pattern is carefully analyzed to optimize the energy usage of university hallways lights and other appliances. Furthermore, data analysis and automatic building lighting control is explored as a part of an upcoming summer scholarly activities.

This project is involving group of undergraduate senior level students of our engineering technology program. Students got the exposure of prototyping a sensor module, 3-D printing, deployment consideration, embedded programming, and the sensor data management.

MEMS Sensors and Actuators Designed, Simulated and Fabricated in an Undergraduate Micro-Electro-Mechanical-Systems Course| Mustafa Guvench, University of Southern Maine

The paper describes use of “MUMPs” (Multi-User-MEMS-Processes) as a platform to teach Silicon based MEMS technologies and to implement design projects in an interdisciplinary undergraduate engineering course offered at the University of Southern Maine. In addition to the standard lectures/reading/homework/tests routine of a typical coursework students in this class are assigned to design, as term projects, various MEMS sensors and actuators using integrated circuit layout design tools and standard Silicon MEMS technologies available. The Silicon-On-Insulator version of MUMPs which is named “SOI-MUMPs” was initially chosen for the final class projects. Thanks to the funding received from NASA/MSGC and USM, successfully completed student designs were combined to form a multi-project MEMS chip and sent out to be fabricated. Packaging and wire bonding of these MEMS chips were done in-house.

In the latest offering of the course a newer technology, “Piezo-MUMPs”  was adopted for its additional piezo-electric film which facilitated MEMS designs to incorporate acoustic and vibration sensors, vibrational energy harvesting devices, resonators with piezoelectric drives as well as higher temperature micro-heaters, thermal actuators and thermocouples.

Classes were attended by a blend of mechanical engineering and electrical engineering seniors. SolidWorks was used by all to simulate and determine resonant frequencies and mechanical properties. Some of these students continued on their class projects for their engineering capstone design.

In the presentation, examples of designs, simulations, test equipment and setups used and the results obtained will be presented to share this experience with the faculty and students attending the conference from other institutions.

Students Engineer Tools for Scientific Discovery via Empirical Research on the Mach Field| Peter Mark Jansson, Bucknell University

This paper summarizes a summer of empirical research completed by undergraduate electrical engineers who desired an experience of engineering beyond the classroom by grappling hands-on with the tools of scientific discovery. In addition, the research focus of their investigations required scientific equipment use, application of new data capture technologies, revisions to new scientific equipment and significant data analysis and interpretation. In this first summer research for the student team they also realized how exciting and engaging it can be to develop relevant technical and professional skills that will make them more valuable in a future workplace or research setting. The core focus of their research experience was to attempt an independent validation of scientific discoveries being published by others – and purported to be evidence of a Machian-like inertial reaction force which could be detected when high inertial masses are in the presence of significant alignments of solar system and near-universe mass. While this work does not focus on the significance or debates relative to the merits of the science and evidence for such discoveries it provides a unique platform for students to gain intimate knowledge regarding the methods of scientific discovery, the development and implementation of experimental protocol, the application and modification of test equipment, data analysis techniques, programs and technologies as well as a host of other experiential learning useful to practicing engineers and researchers. These experiences, while difficult to provide time for in the classroom, are uniquely suited to open-ended scientific research and implicitly include motivation for the students since they feel part of the process of gaining skills for scientific discovery – one of National Academy of Engineering Grand Challenge categories. The students successfully replicated some of the controversial findings being published by others.   

Increasing Diversity and Participation in Engineering

Summer Enrichment Program Aims to Increase Interest and Diversity in STEM Fields| Brittany Anderson, Penn State Harrisburg

The need for educated workers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields is ever growing.  Research shows that since 1990 employment in STEM fields has grown 79% while overall employment has only grown 34%.  Additionally, as of 2016, 13% of employed adults (ages 25+) in the United States are in STEM occupations.  However, there has not been equal growth in all STEM disciplines and minorities are still underrepresented.  For the past three summers, we have been offering a two-week STEM-summer enrichment program emphasizing active learning with an aim of exposing high school students to eight common STEM disciplines (math, chemistry, biology, physics, computer science, civil engineering, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering), along with industry, in hopes of solidifying their love for a particular field or opening their eyes to a new field of study.  A major goal of this program has been to increase interest and diversity in STEM by giving students hands-on experience in these fields. This paper will discuss the growing interest for such a program along with future plans.  Additionally, this paper presents data from 2016 and 2017 program participants including an update of their education/career plans.

Growing the Quantity and Quality of Research Focusing on K-12 Computing Education| Adrienne Decker, University at Buffalo

In this presentation, we will demonstrate the functionality of Anonymous-URL to instructors, researchers, and evaluators interested in teaching computing concepts in K-12 settings. Anonymous-URL was created as part of a 5-year NSF grant (No. XXX) investigating the effectiveness of pre-college computing activities. Anonymous-URL currently houses a curated repository of over 400 published peer-reviewed articles detailing efforts in K-12 computing education as well as a repository of over 100 evaluation instruments used in computing education research studies. Throughout the presentation, we will highlight some of the ways this resource can and has been used by members of the research, teaching, and evaluation community. In particular, research has been conducted to analyze various curated data, including the types of information being reported by research studies and the types of constructs measured by the evaluation instruments. The site allows for contribution by members of the research, evaluation, and teaching community to either the article or instrument repository. As a user of the site, the data presented (in the form of articles) can be filtered on a variety of criterion including (but not limited to) age, gender, and race/ethnicity. The evaluation instruments can be filtered by type of questions, number of questions, constructs (e.g., self-efficacy, grit, interest) and target age range for evaluation. The curated data contained in the repository is also available for free to anyone upon request. The site also provides resources for those interested in improving the quality of their research in the form of guides for writing research questions, creating a study, and reporting findings. Because this is an actively maintained resource, we will show attendees the best mechanism for providing feedback and ideas on how to improve the site for individuals working in the K-12 space.

Results of an Introduction to Research Winter Internship Program for Underrepresented Community College Students| Nick Langhoff, Skyline College

Since 2000, underrepresented minorities’ (URMs) shares in engineering and physical science degrees have been flat despite a rapid increase in their representation of the overall US population. A primary factor to this disparity is retention of URMs in STEM. One of the top recommendations to address STEM student retention is to engage them in research experiences within the first two years of college. Through a grant from the Department of Education Minorities in Science and Engineering Improvement Program (MSEIP), XXXX, a Hispanic-serving community college from Northern California developed the Accelerated STEM Pathways through Internships, Research, Engagement, and Support (ASPIRES) project, a collaborative multi-institution project that addresses barriers to student success using high-impact educational practices that have been shown to enhance interest, increase participation, and improve outcomes for underrepresented minority students in STEM. One of the main components of this project is a three-tiered internship program that that is suitable for community college students and provides multiple exposures to undergraduate research opportunities. This paper focuses on the first tier of this initiative, the ASPIRES Scholars Research Program: a two-week introduction to research internship experience. Held during the winter break, the program introduces freshmen and rising sophomores to scientific research as well as a variety of topics and skills such as applying for internships; introduction to the research process; university laboratory tours; conducting literature review; the university transfer process for community college students; technical presentation skills; and project-specific topics including experimental methods, instrumentation, and data acquisition and statistical error analysis. The paper provides a detailed description of the program curriculum, and summarized results from three years of implementation of the project from 2016-2018. Key findings are shared on program outcomes relating to changes in students’ engagement in their academics, obtaining further internships, transfer preparedness and post-transfer successes, teamwork ability, and sense of self-efficacy.

Serving Diverse Students in the Engineering Classroom Whose Primary Language is not English| James Mallory, RIT / NTID

The Engineering classroom can face a challenge of having a diverse group of students whose first language is not English. By using a recently upgraded smartphone app from Microsoft and an easy implementation by the professor, students can have a classroom lecture transcript in their native language in real time on their smartphone. This will be an interactive demonstration not just a lecture format.

Innovations in Teaching: Problem based learning

Engaging Creativity: Classroom Exercises for Enhancing Engineering Students' Creative Self Identity| Thomas Ask, Pennsylvania College of Technology

Social forces such as group dynamics and identity can nurture or inhibit creative behavior. Identity theories suggest both self-identify and group identity are mutable. In addition, engineers often make decisions with insufficient information and this ‘bounded rationality’ may motivate historically-grounded, low-risk solutions, which are challenging dispositions to innovation. Consequently, epistemology connected with engineering design and problem solving must include reliance upon factors outside the positivistic discourse, such as hunches, intuition, and creative exploration. This paper presents examples of creativity exercises for the engineering classroom and the context under which they should be undertaken. A variant of affinity diagrams is also introduced that reduces the creativity-inhibiting elements of group dynamics.

A Hands-On Experiment to Study the Power and Thermal Characteristics of Digital Systems| Pong Chu, Cleveland State University

When a semiconductor device operates, it consumes energy and generates heat. The power consumption is a key issue in today’s digital system design. In a CMOS transistor, the dynamic power is related to the charging and discharging of the load capacitance at the gate output and is proportional to the switching frequency. The power consumption of a large digital system, which contains millions or even billions of transistors, depends on the circuit, operating frequency, and input patterns, and thus accurately estimating the power consumption is very difficult.

The generated heat leads to a higher temperature inside the device (known as junction temperature).

If the heat is not properly dissipated, the elevated temperature can reduce the device’s lifespan or even lead to device failure. Thermal management uses various cooling methods, such as the heat sink and the forced air flow, to control the temperature. It relies on a simple empirical thermal circuit model with the governing equation of

In the equation, TJ and TA are junction temperature and ambient (air) temperature, P is the power delivered to the device, and JA is the thermal resistance. The  parameter plays a key role and is an estimated value given by the device manufacturer. In the past, performing power and thermal experiments is difficult because the device junction temperature is hard to obtain and the circuitry and the operating frequency of a digital system cannot be easily adjusted. The recent advancement in FPGA technology makes experimentation possible. First, the device has an internal temperature sensor and ADC (analog-to-digital converter) that measures the junction temperature and the supplied voltage. Second, the circuit can be easily modified. Third, the FPGA device has a clock management module that can adjust the system clock frequency.

We develop a hands-on experiment using an inexpensive FPGA board. The experimental system is composed of two parts. The first part is the measurement module that measures the variables in the thermal model, which are the junction temperature, the external air temperature, and the power (via the supplied voltage and current). The module is composed of a soft-core processor, the device’s internal ADC, an external current sensor, and an external temperature sensor. The second part is an artificial “heater circuit.” There are two versions. The first heater circuit is a cascading register chain whose active portion and clock frequency can be adjusted. The second heater circuit is a multi-segment ring oscillator whose segments can be activated independently. The entire system is coded in VHDL and can be fitted into a single FPGA device. The experimental system allows students to adjust various parameters and observe the power and thermal characteristics of a physical digital system and to compare the results with the theoretical models.

Beyond the Technical Lecture: Problem-Based Learning in Engineering Technology and Sustainability| Lisa Greenwood, RIT

Courses in engineering and science are typically taught deductively, through transmission of information from instructor to student, followed by practice problems or assignments to reinforce what was covered in readings and lectures.  Yet in our personal and professional lives, we learn experientially – by being faced with a real situation or problem and attempting to address it, and from our related successes and failures.

Experiential education emphasizes a mixture of content and experiences, connection of learning to meaning, and to the world outside of the classroom, and reflection on this for higher order learning and development of new skills and capabilities. , Problem-based Learning (PBL) is an inductive, active learning approach that connects learning to real world problems, and provides a context on which students can tether their knowledge and internalize course concepts.  Students are thus motivated to seek out a deeper understanding of the concepts they need to address the problems presented in the course.

This research focuses on going beyond the technical lecture to enhance the student experience through PBL and experiential education techniques, based on implementation in RIT’s College of Engineering Technology.  PBL and experiential learning approaches were applied in graduate courses in telecommunications engineering, and an undergraduate course in environmental sustainability.   In all three courses, PBL content was developed and implemented with a goal of motivating and exciting students, and enabling them to internalize the knowledge for deeper understanding.  This included enhancing students’ ability to think critically about real-world challenges in engineering and sustainability, as well as their ability to address these challenges through an inductive, experiential approach that mirrors the way they will need to approach problem-solving in professional practice.  

Our assessments suggest initial challenges for students in self-directed research and working outside of their comfort zone, but ultimately there is evidence of tangible value for student learning, skill development, and ability to succeed and thrive in the field.

Transition from Academia to Industry: Modeling of the Real-World Problems and Solution according to Standard Processes| Basile Panoutsopoulos, Community College of Rhode Island

The typical end of the chapter problems in many science, engineering and technology courses are of generic nature, of the form given some information and the value of some quantities find one or more other quantities. In many cases the problems include unrealistic numerical values. Although this type of problems has a value in illustrating a method, science, engineering and technology students need to be prepared for the transition from academia to the industry. This can be achieved by bringing the real world into the classroom using simplified model problems of the real world. Furthermore, the proposed solution can be modeled using the government-industry program Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR).

A real-world problem is chosen and simplified to fit the time constrains of the course and homework. Usually these problems will be quite long describing a situation and provided necessary, related, and unrelated information. The student must develop the ability to separate the needed and unneeded information. One source of these problems can be cooperation with local industry, another trade and research publications. This type of practical problems can be assigned to a single student or a team of students.

It is proposed that the solution process be developed according to a scaled down version of SBIR process.

From the three phases of SBIR (Phase I: Concept Development, Phase II: Prototype Development, Phase III: Commercialization) the first two can be realized in the course given constrains, while the third phase can be investigated by the team

In this approach the students are using their knowledge of one or more topics to create a solution and to teach themselves. The instructor acts as a consultant (active guide). The students learn to evaluate a problem, make decisions, select an “optimum” solution, learn how to support a point of view. This approach has been applied in various forms. The final product is a prototype and a report.

Integrating Technology into the Classroom: Labs

Some Interesting Experiments In An Electromagnetics, Antennas and Propagation Course| Paul Crilly, U.S. Coast Guard Academy

Nothing strikes more fear and trembling in the hearts of students like a course in electromagnetics (EM), antennas and propagation. The integrals and other arcane math associated with EM theory can certainly be intimidating to many engineering students. Yet in our age of rapid advances in wireless technologies and new applications of these, this is an important subject for electrical engineers to understand. In order to make this course more beneficial and more interesting to our students, we present a set of laboratory experiments and projects that enable them to more directly experience EM theory, antennas, and wireless propagation and thus making these topics more understandable, relevant and enjoyable to electrical engineering students. Experiments include topics in transmission lines, how real components may contain significant parasitic reactances, electromagnetic compatibility, source location and radio direction finding, and the use of signals of opportunity to observe groundwave and skywave radio propagation. Most of the required apparatus will be relatively low cost and allow for maximum student engagement.

Logic Circuits Lab - Breadboard or Verilog| Nashwa Elaraby, Penn State Harrisburg

Logic Circuit design is one of the introductory courses for Electrical Engineering and Electrical Engineering Technology students. Ideally it introduces students to hands-on circuit building, problem solving, testing and function verification. The lab teaches them to use correct lab equipment from digital meters, oscilloscopes to digital logic analyzers. The logic design lab is a learning experiences that most students enjoy.

Other instructors prefer introducing students to Verilog design as the lab experience. Students usually use evaluation boards to implement their designs. The evaluation boards have a FPGA with hard-wired connections of LEDs, seven-segment displays and switches. Based on a survey conducted many students appreciated the fact that they get introduced to learning Hardware Description Language but miss the hands-on circuit building.

Our goal was to find a compromise between the two lab approaches and redesign our lab experiments to give students the benefits of the two options. To obtain primary comparison results, we had two students run the two types of labs in two consecutive semesters. As primary results, both students agreed that (1) building the circuits gave them a better idea of how different circuit elements were connected; (2) Having the possibility to write Verilog behavioral coding, allowed them to drift away from the structural coding that was supposed to enforce the logic design concepts they learned in lecture.

As a compromise, a CPLD was added to the circuit building lab kit. The CPLD is soldered on a PCB for easy mount on the breadboard. The PCB also has a power supply and crystal clock generator. Students have the possibility to connect it to switches, LEDs or 7-segemnt displays and program it. The lab exercises have instructions on creating schematics and structural Verilog code. Behavioral coding is postponed to higher level courses.

A Multimeter Design Kit for Circuit Theory Education| Seth Percy, University of Southern Maine

One of the most common tools for the practicing electrical engineer is the multimeter. This paper describes a kit that was fabricated for use in laboratory experiments to explore concepts of circuit design and implementation of a simple analog multimeter. The commercial multimeter is a combination of several individual instruments to measure voltage, current, resistance, capacitance, etc. Common multimeter designs incorporate digital displays. Before the digital age, the world relied on analog displays. Some argue that analog displays are outdated. However, this overlooks one of the most important characteristics of analog displays, which is an immediate visual and qualitative perception based on needle deflection. Analog displays are still used in many applications such as aviation and automotive, demonstrating their continued usefulness. The analog display is based on an electromechanical device called galvanometer. The galvanometer contains an incrementally-marked face and a needle indicator. The needle deflection indicates the intensity of the flow of a small direct current passing through the device. This kit consists of a galvanometer, a ribbon cable with a breadboard connector, three external lead connectors, a 12-position switch and a fuse, all packaged in a 3D-printed enclosure resembling a handheld commercial multimeter. Students use the kit to design a multi-scale DC voltmeter, DC ammeter and AC voltmeter on a breadboard in the circuit’s laboratory. A parts list and 3D model files are publicly available online for other institutions and individuals to build their own kits. This was a student-led project with close faculty guidance throughout implementation.

Development of Laboratory Learning Modules on CAD/CAM and Rapid Prototyping| Ramachandran Radharamanan, Mercer University

As part of the 3D Modeling & Rapid Prototyping course, two new laboratory learning modules incorporating CAD/CAM and 3D scanning/3D printing methodologies have been developed. First module is to compare and contrast FDM (Fused Deposition Modeling) printing and CNC (Computer Numerical Control) milling. For that purpose, a custom desk organizer is designed in Fusion360. The part is exported as an STL to be sliced in Simplify3D and 3D-printed on a custom made 3D-printer. The part is also machined with a 3-axis CNC machine. The model is programmed in the integrated CAM environment in Fusion360. G-Codes for the CNC is exported and run via Grbl (an open-source firmware for CNC machines). The two processes are then compared and contrasted against several factors such as dimensional accuracy, processing time, and scalability.

The second module is to compare and contrast two different techniques of 3D scanning: fixed and hand-held scanning. In the former, the part is placed on a rotary table and the 3D scanner (EinScan Pro) is fixed in position on a tripod. Scanning large parts is not possible due to size restrictions of the rotary table. In such cases, the same scanner can also be used in a hand-held mode. During the scanning process, the software generates a point cloud, which needs to be optimized before generating a water-tight model in the STL format. In both cases, the parts are edited and scaled appropriately to prepare for printing. The parts are printed on a conventional FDM printer and results obtained are presented and discussed.

Through these hands-on learning modules, the students are trained in emerging/advanced manufacturing technologies such as CAD/CAM, 3D scanning/3D printing, rapid prototyping, and CNC machining. Some of the difficulties encountered and the learning experience from the student teams are also presented and discussed.

Teaching to a Broader Audience

Educating Non-majors on Petroleum Engineering and its Impact and Relevance| Paschalis Alexandridis, University at Buffalo

Two thirds of the energy input to the U.S. economy comes from petroleum and natural gas. The United States is currently the top oil and gas producer in the whole world, as a result of technological advances in oil and gas extraction. The many challenges associated with oil and gas extraction, processing, utilization, and environmental impact engage engineers and scientists across a variety of disciplines and not only those who have majored in petroleum engineering.           

Petroleum engineering encompasses activities related to the production of hydrocarbons (crude oil and natural gas), ranging from exploration and drilling, to well completion and production, to processing and transportation of hydrocarbon products.           

We present here on a Petroleum Engineering course developed at the University at Buffalo (UB), The State University of New York (SUNY). This new elective on Petroleum Engineering provides an opportunity to non-petroleum engineering majors to appreciate the fundamentals and the implications of oil and gas extraction, and to thus inform their university education and professional activities.           

The Petroleum Engineering course at UB introduces key terminology and concepts from petrophysics, drilling, production and reservoir engineering that are needed to understand oil and gas production. Topics covered in the course include: properties of reservoir fluids and rock; petroleum geology; well drilling, logging, and completion; enhanced oil recovery; upstream facilities; production and reservoir performance; midstream and downstream operations; and flow assurance. Furthermore, this course places oil and gas production in the global energy context, and discusses economics, environmental and regulatory issues, and current events.         

The course organization, teaching techniques, and assessment strategy are presented. Examples of term projects by students in this course are highlighted, to show how students can connect petroleum engineering to manufacturing, energy, water, food, climate change, and social progress.

Development and Implementation of a Mechatronics Senior-Level Course in a Traditional Electrical Engineering Program| Salah Badjou, Merrimack College

This paper discusses the development and implementation of a mechatronics course in a traditional electrical engineering program in an undergraduate college. This course is at the senior and first-year graduate levels, and designed for both electrical and mechanical engineering majors. It was proposed as an elective, in preparation for future programs in mechatronics.

Mechatronics is the synergistic combination of electrical, mechanical, and control engineering, and computer science. Modern cost-effective and quality products are often intelligent mechatronic systems or involve mechatronic subsystems. Typical examples are robots. The design of such systems requires a multidisciplinary systems approach that is not taught in traditional specialized engineering disciplines such as electrical and mechanical engineering. The traditional design approach follows the waterfall model, whereby the input from each engineering discipline is considered serially, in stages. This approach is recognized today as ineffective and costly, as it results in designs that are not optimized. A mechatronic systems approach involves the simultaneous optimization of all aspects of the design over its life cycle.

The Mechatronics course was designed as a first course in mechatronics that makes use of the more advanced mathematical knowledge of electrical and mechanical engineering seniors. The course emphasized mathematical modeling and a term project involving the design of a mechatronic system was required. Twelve of the enrolled students were electrical and one was mechanical engineering majors. All aspects of mechatronics were covered, including: mechatronics system design, modeling and simulation of physical systems, sensors and transducers, actuators, system control, signals and systems, signal conditioning and real-time interfacing. The traditional control theory was reviewed and state-space control theory was introduced. Laboratory experimentation included Matlab and Simulink simulations. Lessons learned and the relevance for introducing mechatronics programs are discussed.

Teaching Thermodynamics to Technology Students| Qing Hao, SUNY Buffalo State College

Mechanical Engineering Technology (MET) students take Thermodynamics (ENT311, 3 credits) class in junior year in SUNY Buffalo State College, with prerequisite of Calculus and General Physics. The content convers the first law of thermodynamics, ideal gas equation and pure substance properties, enthalpy, second law of thermodynamics, entropy, and power and refrigeration cycles. In my teaching, I realized that students need more practice in theoretical deriving and rigorous reasoning to understand the first law and second law deeply and thoroughly by challenging students in classroom and engaging their studying interests.

The first law of thermodynamics is essentially the principle of energy conservation, which Technology major students are familiar with from their previous studies; but applying this principle to predict changes of pressure, temperature, volume, absorbing heat from surrounding or release heat to surrounding, system does work to surrounding or surrounding does work to system during a specific process, even for ideal gas, is new to them. I designed a diagram shown in Figure 1 as a reasoning and deriving tool to help students. Once they are familiar with the chart, the barrier of applying the first law to any process can be overcome in a systematic way, thus engaging their interests in classroom discussion and studying. This chart can also help students plot the pressure-volume (p-V) diagram or translate p-V diagram to temperature-entropy (T-s) diagram in following chapters of engineering cycles, thus make them feel that Thermodynamics class can be easy, comfortable and enjoyable.

Teaching EE Fundamentals to Everyone| David McLaughlin, University of Massachusetts Amherst

We consider the challenge, and the opportunity, of teaching electrical engineering fundamentals to non-electrical engineering (EE) or electrical & computer engineering (ECE) majors. Engineering majors from mechanical, industrial, biomedical, and other non-ECE majors are typically required to take an EE Fundamentals course as part of their undergraduate curriculum. Such a course can help to position students to work on multidiscipline engineering design teams; prepare them for taking exams needed for professional engineering licensure; and, for some engineering majors, help to implement senior-level capstone design projects. Across campus, many non-engineering majors -- who may have an interest in “making” or who would benefit from having skills in electronic design and prototyping for art, theater, landscape architecture, entrepreneurship, and other fields – may also benefit from an introductory EE course. Given the recent trend of increasing college student applications to study undergraduate STEM fields as well as surge in student interest in “making” it is reasonable to ask whether we should be creating additional opportunities for students campus-wide to participate in EE learning and coursework. This paper considers some of the opportunities and challenges to doing this. We consider challenges such as recruiting students, dealing with prerequisites, motivating non-EE majors to study EE-topics, student diversity and inclusion, and resources. We rely on experience teaching two courses at UMass Amherst to give insights into these issues. ECE 361 is the EE for non-EE engineering majors course. This course covers linear circuit analysis, digital logic, and electronics and is required for more than 250 engineering students each year. Even though they are non-EE majors and they are required to take this course, students often report via course evaluations that this course is “Fun and Interesting” and is “My favorite class this semester. ” ECE 190A – Queer Lights, is a new Social World/ US Diversity course that is open to all students on campus, from any major. Queer Lights combines elements of electrical engineering, LGBTQA topics, and the foundations of diversity in a single course. Student comments from previous 1-credit hour offerings of the course included, “I really enjoyed this class and love how it ties engineering in with LGBTQIA+ topics” and “This was a great course. I really wouldn’t mind meeting more during the week so we can have more time discussing LGBTQIA+ topics and so we have more time to pursue larger projects.” This course has been expanded to four credits and is now being offered as an experimental ECE course that is part of the general education curriculum at UMass Amherst.

Assessments for Teaching and Learning

Freshmen Knowledge of Blockchain and Digital Technology and Applications at a University Setting| Praneetha Kuppili, University of New Haven

Blockchain has been in the print and digital media a lot lately.  Many companies such as Dell, Walmart and the grocery giant Kroger are using blockchain technology as a part of their supply chain systems.  We were curious to know whether and to what degree the students at the University of XYZ are familiar with the digital technologies, and specially the blockchain technology and its applications.  We chose to start with a survey of the freshmen as a pilot study. We have conducted a survey among the freshmen of our university and this survey included various questions on their understanding of various social media technologies, blockchain, their knowledge of current trends, and demographic questions. The survey raw data are analyzed, summary statistics are computed of various factors, and cross-tabulation of key factors are constructed to determine the level and degree of familiarity of the freshmen (delineated by field of study, gender, and visa-status) with the technologies and relationship which might exist. The second part of our study is to invite the freshmen who responded positively to the question of “would you be interested in working with faculty and students on blockchain applications” to investigate the use of blockchain in the University’s bookstore in their book ordering system. The bookstore use case application will be presented.

Participatory Research with Small to Moderate-sized Farmers Enhances Design of, and Interest in, Anaerobic Digester Technology| Adrianne Traub, Syracuse University

Anaerobic digester (AD) technologies are an accepted method of improving environmental sustainability, soil health, and rural economies (Mata-Alvarez, 2014). AD technologies are typically associated with large-scale dairy farms and concentrated animal feeding operations. This association is an outcome of engineering and public policy choices designed to benefit large-scale farms. Publicly-funded research, which has historically focused on large farms, is beginning to shift toward more equitably distributed research dollars. Creating scale appropriate technologies for small and mid-sized farms enhances their ability to thrive in today’s rural economy.

In order to capture the benefits of technological advances, we must understand farmers’ attitudes and experiences. Educational AD workshops and on-farm visits for small and mid-sized crop and livestock farmers were provided by a mixed team of graduate student and faculty engineers, cooperative extension staff and social scientists from multiple institutions. Pre- and post-surveys, and individual interviews were conducted to gather information about the degree and composition of acceptance and resistance to adoption of AD technologies on a variety of farm scales.

Data collected from the interviews and surveys contribute to a farmer-centric approach to technology, as well as an understanding of the interests and needs of New York State farmers. Results show increasing farmers’ understanding about the engineering process through outreach and education improves interest in applying sustainable technology to farm operations. Creating space for farmers to express concerns and questions also allows researchers to critically examine how the technology can be improved to meet stakeholder needs. Data may further inform policy and funding priorities for a more diversified agricultural research agenda regarding AD technology.

Beyond the Technical Lecture: Experiential learning

Impacts of a Makerspace on a New Established Engineering Program| Tolga Kaya, Sacred Heart University

Makerspaces are lab spaces that foster creativity and innovation by offering tools for prototyping, tinkering, as well as collaboration and interaction. We have started our first engineering major at a private liberal arts college last year. One of the major challenges was to create an engineering culture where design process, optimization, and failure are part of the daily tasks. Due to the limited number of students (less than 20 in a total of 2 cohorts so far), establishing a club was not realistic. Therefore, as the director of engineering, I focused on creating a sense of community through makerspace projects and internal/external events hosted/organized by the engineering students. With a moderate makerspace consisting some 3d printers, tools, crafts, and electronics, students found themselves immersed in variety of projects in which they collaborated and struggled together. Within less than 6 months, the space became a hangout area for students to discuss projects, do homework, mentor each other, and even hold movie nights. We firmly believe that providing space for students and allowing them to be roam around with correct guidance, student motivation can be improved. In this work, we will provide specific activities that were carried out in the makerspace and their resulting impacts on student retention and motivation. We will also discuss the challenges faced during the implementation of makerspace and attracting students to work on projects.

Innovations in Engineering Education: Experiential Engineering Education via Innovation - A New Approach| Bala Maheswaran, Northeastern University

Experiential learning motivates students to grasp the concept and gain knowledge in the subject. It also helps them to use their skill for innovative outcomes. Experiential based learning is an interesting concept and is in practice at several institutions. How much these activities influence learning is always met with varying opinions. We try to reform engineering education by moving away from the boundaries of traditional classroom based methods to project-based, concept-based, team-based, skill- and knowledge-integrated approaches using real world situations.

In our presentation, we will show innovative experiential learning approaches and their outcomes. This includes sample students papers and projects published at peer-reviewed proceedings, and several learning activities used as part of the experiential education. We will also present prototypical course requirements, such as, case study, proposals for projects, projects reports, designing and building prototypes. This presentation will be beneficial to other educators to style their own experiential learning approaches.

Experiential Learning: Dialogue of Civilization, Fluid Mechanics in Vietnam| Mohammad Taslim, Northeastern University

A faculty-led mechanical engineering undergraduate student group spent 7 weeks in Vietnam for a “dialogue of civilization” (DOC) program at Northeastern University to promote experiential learning [1,2]. Participants took two courses for credit: (i) Fluid mechanics which is a 4- credit hour core course in mechanical engineering and (ii) Exploring Engineering, History and Culture in Vietnam which is a technical elective. Visits were arranged to hydropower stations, local traditional industries such as wooden boat manufacturing, basket weaving, lantern making and honey bee farms, world heritage national parks, and numerous local points of interest which were an integral part of this DOC program. Homework, projects, book reports, presentations, two tests and a final exam were based on the standard syllabi and site visits. Learning environment was conducive to promote interdisciplinary academic pursuits, experiential learning, and practical applications in fluid mechanics, mechanical design, hydropower, geology, socio-economics etc., as well as independent study, teamwork, and communication skills.

Changes for Student Success: A Work-in-progress

Machine Design Tutor Using a Custom Matlab Toolbox| Mir Atiqullah, Kennesaw State University

One of the most computationally intensive subject in mechanical engineering is Machine Design which requires students to use numerous equations often involving large number of variables.  Partly because of same or similar symbols being used for various variables, students face tremendous challenge of connecting variables to specific meaning and then to equations.  While topics can be better assimilated by trying a range of values in the same equation, it requires repeated set up and performing the calculations.  This is tedious and often become a barrier to further investigation.  Current effort is to develop a MATLAB based computational environment which utilizes graphical interface that is intuitive, logical, and contextual.  The requirement to setup complex equation, deal with many variables and their units, and the need to repeat calculations would be streamlined.  This toolbox would enable the student to perform ‘what if’ analyses repeatedly with minimal variation of input without the chore of repeated setup and calculations manually.  The ‘Toolbox’ will accept standard array of inputs and based on intermediate outcomes, channel the computation to the logical steps, eventually leading to the correct solutions.  The equations and methodology built into this toolbox closely follow the textbook and in some way mimic the worked out examples in the text.  While this toolbox uses MATLAB as the computational engine, it requires minimal or no prior knowledge of the package. The principal author has long experience teaching not just machine design but also mechanics of materials as well as senior capstone design.  Implementing this project is raising the hope that teaching machine design would be little less frustrating. This is an instructor-student project integrating technology into engineering education with feedback from both sides.  Such a toolbox one day could be integrated into digital supplement to accompany the text.

Methods for teaching statics| Anuja Kamat, Wentworth Institute of Technology

Being able to predict undergraduate students' success in college and likelihood to graduate has long been one of the defining struggles in engineering education. To explore chemical engineering students' preparation to succeed academically, we administered the Academic Success Skills Survey to a group of first-semester, first-year undergraduate students in chemical engineering. Those students have now completed their capstone senior design projects, and they were asked to fill out a post version of the same survey after this final semester experience. We plan to look at these longitudinal data from the perspective of how students’ performance in Senior Design (CHE255) correlates with specific academic success skills. Based on the results of this analysis, we will follow up with successful students about the specific behaviors or learning experiences they feel contributed most to building their ability to succeed. Ultimately, we hope to develop a set of targeted success strategies for chemical engineering students at our institution and connect them with the experiences of past students as a way to enrich their own academic journeys.

Predicting Success in Chemical Engineering: A Work-in-Progress| Kyle Trenshaw, University of Rochester

Being able to predict undergraduate students' success in college and likelihood to graduate has long been one of the defining struggles in engineering education. To explore chemical engineering students' preparation to succeed academically, we administered the Academic Success Skills Survey to a group of first-semester, first-year undergraduate students in chemical engineering. Those students have now completed their capstone senior design projects, and they were asked to fill out a post version of the same survey after this final semester experience. We plan to look at these longitudinal data from the perspective of how students’ performance in Senior Design (CHE255) correlates with specific academic success skills. Based on the results of this analysis, we will follow up with successful students about the specific behaviors or learning experiences they feel contributed most to building their ability to succeed. Ultimately, we hope to develop a set of targeted success strategies for chemical engineering students at our institution and connect them with the experiences of past students as a way to enrich their own academic journeys.



Theme: Education

Encouraging Women in STEM through a Multi-Tiered Mentorship Program
Authors: Shannon Moffat, Sabine Hahn, Meagan Carnes, Anusuya Pal, Cristina DeOliveira
Poster Number: 53

Worcester Polytechnic Institute has implemented the Women’s Research and Mentorship Program (WRAMP), a multi-tiered mentorship program for high school women from the local community and college undergraduates to engage in hands-on laboratory research with female graduate student mentors. This program funds five mentoring teams, each consisting of two high school students, one undergraduate student, and one graduate student working together in the graduate student’s lab. Graduate students design a hands-on project and assist high school students with executing it within their lab, thus gaining valuable experience in teaching and mentoring. The unique structure of the program also provides an opportunity to form a close-knit community of fellow female graduate students within WPI. This year, WRAMP expanded the program by introducing undergraduates to work alongside the graduate students to gain laboratory experience and learn more about graduate school, as well as to help the high school students explore their interests and prepare for college. Through this program, the high school students gain exposure to STEM careers and get hands-on experience in a laboratory, providing an opportunity to an underrepresented group within the surrounding Worcester community. This year, 40% of high school participants were from local Worcester public high schools, and 30% were women of color.

In addition, 80% of the undergraduates who participated were women of color. The 2.5-month-long program concludes with the high school women presenting a poster of the data that they collected and skills that they learned over the course of their project. Ultimately, the goal of this program is to provide a unique, multi-tiered female mentoring program to the WPI and greater Worcester community with the long-term goal of increasing the number of women, especially women of color, to pursue a career in a STEM field. Program outcomes for participants will be discussed in this presentation.

Best Practices for Science Outreach and Engagement in Different Environments
Authors: Kathleen Chou, Benjamin Swerdlow, Timothy Chambers, Avi Bregman, Duncan Greeley
Poster number: 54

Science outreach and engagement with K-12 students is an important opportunity to broaden interest in engineering technologies and STEM career options. Effective outreach should tailor the content and activities to students’ developmental level and accommodate local environmental and social constraints. Since 2017, graduate students in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering (MSE) at the University of Michigan have been actively involved in developing and implementing outreach curriculum targeting local K-12 classes to teach students about MSE through interactive lessons addressing statewide curriculum standards. Additional outreach events at public venues such as museums or science fairs have required the adaptation of demonstrations to be fast, tactile, and safe. Through these experiences, best practices for university outreach centered on planning and implementation of lessons have been developed.  These have focused on identification of learning objectives and outcomes, actively engaging students, and adapting lessons for different audiences and environments. In addition, these guidelines include advice on obtaining funding for outreach activities, volunteer engagement, and teacher coordination for school visits. Best practices will be discussed to share ideas and experiences for starting and sustaining effective university outreach programs.

Multipoint Evaluation Paradigm for Entry Level STEM Courses
Authors: Tarek Elarabi
Poster number: 55

The traditional midterm and final examination system has been proved to be ineffective for STEM students’ assessments; especially at the introductory level courses. Typically, the main learning objectives of STEM courses are to develop technology related skills and to prepare STEM students for technology intensive career. Accordingly, STEM courses must adapt an evaluation system that assesses not only the student’s accumulated knowledge about the course topics, but also the development of technical skills. The proposed evaluation paradigm is designed to quantitatively evaluate the development of technology skills during semester-long STEM courses. A case study of introductory Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) courses that have adapted the proposed Multipoint Evaluation Paradigm (MEP) is discussed. In addition, this paper presents the quantitative measurements for the effectiveness of the proposed student evaluation system.  

Freshmen Knowledge of Blockchain and Digital Technology and Applications at a University Setting
Authors:  Praneetha Kuppili, Shrutika Ambade, Raj Tailor, Dr. M. Ali Montazer
Poster number: 57

Blockchain has been in the print and digital media a lot lately.  Many companies such as Dell, Walmart and the grocery giant Kroger are using blockchain technology as a part of their supply chain systems.  We were curious to know whether and to what degree the students at the University of New Haven are familiar with the digital technologies, and specially the blockchain technology and its applications.  We chose to start with a survey of the freshmen as a pilot study. We have conducted a survey among the freshmen of our university and this survey included various questions on their understanding of various social media technologies, blockchain, their knowledge of current trends, and demographic questions. The survey raw data are analyzed, summary statistics are computed of various factors, and cross-tabulation of key factors are constructed to determine the level and degree of familiarity of the freshmen (delineated by field of study, gender, and visa-status) with the technologies and relationship which might exist.The second part of our study is to invite the freshmen who responded positively to the question of “would you be interested in working with faculty and students on blockchain applications” to investigate the use of blockchain in the University’s bookstore in their book ordering system. The bookstore use case application will be presented.

iLearns: A Kinesthetic Learning Platform
Authors: Alexander Lazar, Cesido Lucente, Hana Basheer, Mark Kayutkin, Matt Rwasenge,Vaughn Shorter,Thomas Depaola
Poster number: 58

iLearns is an interactive learning environment for elementary and preschool teachers to use in a classroom setting. The system allows teachers to develop lesson plans in which children use RFID and wireless networking to bring inanimate objects in the classroom to life. The project leverages kinesthetic learning to make learning more engaging. Kinesthetic learning is a learning style in which learning takes place by the students carrying out physical activities, rather than listening to a lecture or watching demonstrations. iLearns was developed with the objective of creating a learning platform which enhances the learning experience for young children. To accomplish this a spelling game was developed based around a giant carpet with the letters of the alphabet on it. Students scan letters on the carpet with an RFID reader to spell words. The corresponding letters would are then transmitted to the game and shown on a display in front of the class. Teachers could create customized lessons to tune the experience to their individual classroom needs. The project is designed by a multidisciplinary group of engineering and computer science students, under the direction of a faculty advisor. This provides an experiential learning experience whereby students can work on real-world projects. The group plans to develop new games and work with more teachers to expand the platform for their teaching needs.

Enhancing Student’s Lab Experience in the Chemical Process Control through an Inverted Classroom Approach
Authors: Zuyi (Jacky) Huang
Poster number: 59

The course Chemical Process Control provides students with an experience to quantify the transient dynamics of chemical processes and design controllers with optimal performance. A typical project for students to solve is to design controllers for a chemical reactor to obtain desired quality product in a timely and safety manner. This involves mathematical modeling and process control techniques that are challenging for both teaching and learning. In order to address this, we introduced a real-life controller design lab that offered our students with practical experience in chemical process control. In particular, we designed an inverted classroom approach to introducing a portable-control lab that can be implemented in classrooms to control and record the temperature data of the aluminum bar over time. In addition, students changed one controller parameter at one time to study the influence from that controller parameter on the performance of the whole control system.

In the flipped-classroom teaching format, instruction videos were recorded and posted on the internet for students to watch before doing experiment in class. The assessment of the effectiveness of the proposed inverted-classroom approach was conducted by an anonymous survey by 68 senior students after they did the lab. The survey included three sections that evaluated: 1) the effectiveness of the flipped-classroom approach in facilitating  students’ learning; 2) the improvement of students’ skills in deriving models from experimental data; and 3) the improvement of students’ knowledge in PID controller design and tuning. Survey results indicated that these flipped-classroom teaching modules enhanced students’ ability of developing models from input-out data and tuning PID controllers. Students liked to recommend the lab to future students. Surveys also showed that they needed more time to do experiment in class and that they liked to have chance to do experiment out of class.

Reflections on developing and implementing an immersive computer engineering and computer science camp for female high school students
Authors: Chinmayee Rane,  Shanelle Ileto, Roman Encarnacion, Eithne Amos, and Dr. Jennifer Winikus
Poster number: 60

Addressing the need for summer youth programs, we developed and designed a new Computer Science and Engineering (CSE) program. CSExplore is a three day camp for female high schools students that was deployed for the pilot program in the summer of 2018, with the design and development beginning in Spring of 2017. The program welcomed 11 students, sponsored by the University at Buffalo (UB) President’s Circle and ValueCentric for an immersive exploration of CSE concepts.

Developing the content, including the activity book, took the most effort. All the activities were developed from scratch. We had to integrate the activities in a way that met learning objectives and were fun. This meant distilling concepts to be understood without a technical background. We tested several activities, such as a binary abacus activity and scratch video game, during several UB events and with current students in the CSE department. Through testing, we received constructive feedback about our activities and we were able to improve the camp’s activity book as a result.

Working with the students required flexibility and adaptability. As instructors, it was our responsibility to identify what the students wanted and needed. Many students were initially adamant about not coding. We dared them to explore that side of computer engineering and computer science by conducting a simplistic coding activity involving circuits. Within the hour, they were lighting up LEDs and manipulating microcontrollers with ease. The activity sparked their curiosity. Complaints were replaced with genuine interest. Programming robots and creating video games only stimulated their interest, breaking down the barriers of what they had previously thought as unattainable. Moreover, the lunch with the CSE Department professors connected the students and faculty on a personal level. Learning about the department and exchanging personal experiences helped boost confidence among the students. At the end of this experience, CSExplore was able to successful spark enthusiasm and curiosity in the high school students who attended the camp.


Based on feedback, in the future, we would like to make the computer science concepts more tangible and hands on. We would like to place less emphasis on mathematics, and a greater emphasis on the main ideas of CSE. Computer Science and Engineering is vast in its multitudes, which can be daunting for high school students. We stress breaking down CSE into pieces that are feasible, achievable, and give students the confidence to explore. We would like to expand on the more interactive activities of CSExplore, such as those involving circuits, microcontrollers, and robotics. From this experience, we will continue to develop CSExplore and other immersive programs.

Theme: Project teams

Authors: Connor Hoehle, Ray Cerrato, Huston Helwig, Mike Marriott, Wilson Zhou, LCDR Daeffler, CDR Seals
Poster number: 56

The purpose of this presentation is to describe the process of an interdisciplinary team of Electrical Engineering and Mechanical Engineering undergraduate students constructing an autonomous surface vessel (ASV). This team is building an ASV for their senior capstone project that will meet requirements established by RoboNation (https://www.robonation.org/), a robotic community that hosts the annual RoboBoat competition.  Once fully constructed, the ASV will compete against other schools in June 2019, in Daytona, Florida.  The presentation will describe how the team is divided into five subgroups: Hull Design, Propulsion, Controls, Sensors, and Programming.  The current hull is a multihull design in order to optimize stability using 4-inch PVC pontoons.  A new version of the hull that will be cut from foam has been designed.  The vessel uses two T-200 thrusters from Blue Robotics each with 10 pounds of thrust powered with a 16-volt lithium ion battery.  The vessel can be controlled remotely using a standard RC controller as well as in autonomous mode using a laptop and Arduino UNO.  Two sensors are in the process of being integrated: a Logitech web camera and an AIRMAR sensor to get heading and GPS data.  A LIDAR sensor will be integrated to assist with detecting distance from objects.  MATLAB is used to collect sensor data, control the thrusters, and implement autonomous procedures.  The presentation will provide initial results of the team’s progress, including calculations of the vessel’s stability and buoyancy, test results from sensors, and basic autonomous operations.

Design of MEMS Biomimetic Directional Acoustic Sensors
Authors: Mustafa Guvench, James Fitz, Shaun Sylvester, Joshua Perry
Poster number: 61

The fly “Ormia Ochracea” depends on its highly directional and frequency specific hearing system to determine the location of its host cricket.  Very closely separated eardrums of the fly are coupled by a tympanal bridge which, in effect, makes the fly’s hearing system hyper sensitive not only to a specific frequency but also to the phase difference of the sound waves arriving at its two coupled eardrums for direction finding.  This project involves the design and design verification of two piezoelectric resonant MEMS microphones mimicking the working principles of Ormia Ochracea’s coupled ear drums to achieve frequency specific high sensitivity and directionality. Our designs employed the PiezoMUMPsTM MEMS fabrication technology which provides a piezoelectric Aluminum Nitride (AlN) film to be deposited on the Silicon flexible beams of the MEMS structure to generate charge and voltage when deflected under the pressure of the incoming sound and set into one of its mechanical modes of resonance.

SolidWorksTM simulations were employed to determine and trim the resonant modes of the biomimetic coupled eardrum MEMS microphones designed. The same simulations also helped to  determine the optimum locations of placement of their piezoelectric charge collecting metal electrodes. Also, a test platform comprised of a tweeter speaker driven by AFG3021 function generator which is frequency stepped by our “CIE-Bode” automated test program, home-made charge amplifiers,  and a TDS2024C oscilloscope was built to test the frequency response and the directional sensitivity of our MEMS microphones, and compare them with a calibrated microphone. Two different designs yielded  narrow frequency responses with 10KHz and 7.5 KHz peaks, and -3dB bandwidths of about 1/40th of their resonant frequencies.  In plane -3dB directivity measurements yielded +/- 10 degrees.  Ormia Ochracea biomimetic acoustic sensor design projects presented here represent extended outcomes of term projects assigned in an undergraduate MEMS course.

Design, Fabrication and Testing of MEMS Piezoelectric Devices for Vibrational Energy Harvesting
Authors: Mustafa Guvench, Shindano Singi, Alexander Wilson
Poster number: 62

Micro Electro-Mechanical Systems (MEMS) technologies allow creation of small electro-mechanical devices that can be integrated with microelectronic circuits to achieve a variety of functionalities. In this work, piezoelectric properties of Aluminum Nitride (AlN) deposited on flexing Silicon MEMS beams were employed to design MEMS devices which can serve as micropower vibration energy harvesters as well as miniature vibration sensors. Four different devices each millimeter sized have been designed and fabricated using PiezoMUMPsTM process. SolidWorksTM and COMSOLTM simulations were employed to determine the optimum locations of placement of their piezoelectric charge collecting metal electrodes. The same simulations also helped to verify and accurately determine their actual resonant frequencies to be 150 Hz, 180 Hz, 210Hz and 850 Hz, which cover a wide range of vibrational frequencies to generate small amounts of power from vibrations. Also, a vibration table and a test set up has been built by using an ET-132 electrodynamic transducer and a HP6824A power amplifier driven by AFG3021 function generator frequency stepped by our “CIE-Bode” automated test program. Dynamic and frequency response measurements were facilitated by a calibrated ADXL377 acceleration sensor built on the vibration platform and a TDS2024C oscilloscope for voltage measurements. Measurements showed feasibility of MEMS device harvested vibration energies as high as 10 µW.

The energy harvesters’ designs and simulations were done as one of the team term projects assigned in a senior level technical elective MEMS course populated by a blend of Electrical and Mechanical Engineering students. Fabrication, packaging and testing of MEMS devices and design of the testing platform were done by the authors as a part of their senior design capstone project which was funded by the university’s undergraduate research opportunities program.  

Electrothermally Actuated MEMS Microgrippers: Design, Simulation, Fabrication and Testing
Authors: Mustafa Guvench, Seth Percy
Poster number: 63

Micro Electro-Mechanical Systems (MEMS) technologies allow creation of small electro-mechanical devices that can be integrated with Silicon microelectronic circuits to achieve a variety of functionalities. In this work, Joule heating and thermal expansion of Silicon beams were employed to design, implement and test the functionality of MEMS Microgrippers. Two different devices each millimeter size have been designed and fabricated using PiezoMUMPsTM process. The first design is based on asymmetrically heated pair of parallel beams tied at both ends to bend toward the cold beam to create an in-plane deflection of the free end. The second design employed a standard Chevron design to create a linear push  from thermally expanding heated beams but also used a unique technique of amplification of the small  linear displacement via rotation and a reverse lever action. SolidWorksTM FEM simulations were conducted to verify and maximize the tip displacements achievable without failure (breakage) within the operating temperature limit set at 400 degree Celsius.

The designs were fabricated, packaged, wire bonded, and tested under microscope to measure the microgrippers’ tip-to-tip displacement as a function of the electrical power and voltage applied. Our unique Chevron design (2mm by 2mm area, 1.2 mm arm length), yielded as much as  80 µm tip-to-tip  opening when powered from an 11VDC source, about 4 times larger than the widely used asymmetrically heated parallel beams design.

This project was done as a capstone senior design project and partially funded by the university’s undergraduate research opportunities program.

Design and Manufacturing of a Suture Removal Force Testing Platform
Authors: Kyle Lopez, Andrew Koukoulas ,Matthew Barletta, Jason LaPan, Mary Phillips, Joseph Festa, Tim Taraskevich , Ted Maniscalco, Josh Obrien
Poster number: 64

Surgical sutures are stored using a variety of package or retainer designs. Surgeons and nurses prefer retainers with a lower suture removal force.  In addition, suture snagging and rubbing contribute to a high removal force with potential suture damage.  Thus, the force required to remove the suture from the retainer is one metric used to gauge quality.  Here, a group of four mechanical engineering students worked with Medtronic’s Minimally Invasive Therapies Group to develop a fixture to test the removal force of a suture from its retainer.

The current suture removal force testing device had a larger than desired footprint and the load cell that measures the pulling force was independent of testing motor and actuator. This created a safety concern to the test operator as well as a potential for damage to testing equipment.  The team proposed the following problem statement:

Design a test fixture and accompanying method for determining suture removal force for Medtronic. The fixturing should be designed for use with an Instron-5966 Test Frame with Torsional Add-On and BlueHill3 Testing Software, as well as be able to accommodate a wide range of suture lengths (up to 4.5’) and retainer sizes for all Medtronic and equivalent competitive products.

The final design uses a belt-driven linear actuator, a gearbox that changes the axis of rotation, a drive shaft that mates with the torsional add-on from the Instron-5966 Test Frame and the gearbox and a load cell.  The testing device is completely operated by the BlueHill3 software program. The torsional add-on is tuned to rotate at a speed that drives the actuator used to remove the suture from the packaging at the required 12”/second. The final design also gives the Medtronic Quality and Testing department the ability to test the suture memory immediately after testing the removal force.

USCG Station Sewer Redesign
Authors: Brianna Nelson, Jian Zhang, Riley Cassidy, and Rachel Hammond
Poster number: 65

A team of senior capstone design students at the United States Coast Guard Academy have re-designed the sewer system for Coast Guard Station Channel Islands in Oxnard, California. The sewer system services wastewater from the USCGC Blacktip (an 87 foot cutter), a shop building, and a building that provides office space and berthing for 10 station members. When the cutter discharges sewage under pressure into the gravity system, an odor is created in the station buildings that has negatively impacted morale and station operations. The capstone team was charged with analyzing and redesigning the sewer system to address the odor problem, as well as repair or replace sewer pipes that are undersized or in poor condition. The team also looked at updating drain traps, toilets, and urinals, and considered installing a water softener.

An inspection of the system during a January 2019 site visit revealed structural pipe issues where the service line connected to the main district line. This caused a backflow of sewage into the station and prevalent odor issues. Video footage taken in February 2019 revealed additional information on the condition of the sewer lines in the system. The team worked with a budget of $250K to help select the final design. After considering several potential alternative systems, the team selected a design that accounted for cost, maintenance issues, long term effectiveness, odor control, and support of station mission.

Theme: Student Research

Energy Efficient Clustering in Heterogeneous Wireless Sensor Networks (Survey)
Authors: Baidar Khan
Poster number: 23

Ongoing advancements in electro-mechanical, power electronics and wireless communications have made possible the use wireless sensor networks in remote applications. A wide range of applications such as monitoring of environmental conditions, forest fire protection, disaster management and target monitoring in military applications utilize these sensor networks to solve problems. This has made wireless sensor networks the hottest topic for research today. These remote and unattended applications require a huge number of sensor nodes working efficiently together for a common goal. Since sensor nodes have limited resources like processing, power and sensing capacity, their resources need to be used in efficient manner in order to improve a network’s lifetime. One of the most important methods to achieve this is by making clusters. Nodes may not have the same energy, which makes it even more important for these clusters to work efficiently together to save power. Wireless sensor networks are of homogeneous and heterogeneous type. This paper presents a survey about efficient clustering mechanisms in heterogeneous wireless sensor networks. Nodes in homogeneous wireless sensor networks have similar resources, however heterogeneous networks have nodes with different energy levels that can be effectively used to enhance a network’s lifetime.

Reducing Network Power Consumption in 5G Network Using Software-Defined Mobile Networks and Device-to-Device Technologies
Authors: Viyaleta Peterson, Aarchi Patel, Alagappan Solayappan , Carey King
Poster number:24

We expect future 5G network to have low power consumption and minimal delay, as well as a more flexible and secure architecture. One of the requirements of 5G network is concerned primarily with increasing energy efficiency by decreasing the data delivery time and automating the network communication between two hosts. Implementation of Software Defined Mobile Networks (SDMN) to control the range of cell site communication and device-to-device (D2D) technologies to enable the devices on the network to behave as routers between other devices and the cell site has the potential to significantly reduce the overall power consumption in the mobile network. Our paper provides a theoretical approach for such model and shows that its implementation will increase energy efficiency in 5G.

Donald J. Farish Memorial Pedestrian Bridge
Authors: Amber Peach, Eleanor Phetteplace, Benjamin Sauter, Khalid Alarifi
Poster number: 25

Due to an expected increase in pedestrian traffic across a 4-lane state highway in Rhode Island, a pedestrian bridge is needed to increase accessibility to the west side of this highway, and improve safety for pedestrians and bicyclists when crossing.  To address this issue, the initial design phases, or basis of design study, have been completed for a proposed pedestrian bridge, including: preliminary concepts, structural designs, and 30% complete construction documents. Location, construction materials (concrete, steel, wood), historic districting/restrictions, building regulations, cost, and site constraints were all considered for the preliminary plans.  In addition to the items above, material density, moving and environmental loads were considered for the design of the structural elements. A number of bridge and ramp types were considered. Ultimately, two bridge and two ramp types were selected to be developed beyond concept through standard structural analysis and design. Visual representations of the pedestrian bridge designs were developed using AutoCAD and REVIT. Included in the basis of design study is a cost estimation for the selected designs.

Network Virtualization Technologies and Challenges
Authors: Zainab Al-Taweel, Prof. Omar Abuzaghleh, Cheick A. Konate, Joshua  Oiseomaoje, Mohammed Alyas, Scott Ivan
Poster number: 26

Network virtualization is dividing or combining hardware resources that the users can make use of, and every user has his own specific perspective, these resources can be nodes or links. Network virtualization became one of the most important technologies recently, the architecture and base platform of an NV hardware is crucially looked at for its importance in implementing an advanced consumer service. It also an important part is to follow the technical requirements when implementing the system.

In this research, we have conducted a thorough study in network virtualization technologies, applications, and challenges. We studied the standards of virtualization in computer networks, the capability to run unique logical network environments from a pooled set of physical network devices, all with automation supplied by way of software. Additionally, we have studied Virtual Network Function (VNF) concept that handles the different networking functions running on one or more hardware components. We also discussed the requirements, reliability and security issues of the VNF. Finally, we looked through virtualization optimization techniques and one important application in cloud computing. Network virtualization is proposed to be an integral part of next-generation networking paradigm, provides flexibility, reduce cost, promotes diversity and promises security and increased manageability.

Design and Simulation of Bi2Te3 Micro Thermoelectric Generator
Authors: Thomas Arciuolo, Xingguo Xiong
Poster number: 27

Micro thermoelectric generator (µTEG) utilizes Seebeck effect to harvest thermal energy and directly converts it into electrical energy. It can be used to power up microelectronic devices such as wearable electronics, implanted biomedical devices, Internet-of-Things (IoT) devices, etc. Due to MEMS (Microelectromechanical Systems) technology, the thermocouple units can be minimized and integrated in large scale, hence leading to improved energy conversion efficiency. In this poster, the design and simulation of a Bismuth Telluride (Bi2Te3) micro thermoelectric generator is reported. Bi2Te3 shows better efficiency compared to other thermoelectric materials. The μ-TEG device consists of array of thermocouples connected both in series (electrically) and in parallel (thermally) to supply required voltage with enough power output. The device model is built in COMSOL and FEM (Finite Element Method) simulation is performed to verify its function and guide the device design. Based on the simulation result, the thermal energy conversion efficiency is calculated. It is proposed to be a supplementary power source for portable electronic devices including smart watch, Bluetooth and IoT devices, etc.

Authors: Shefalika Asthana, Pranav Kumar Eranti
Poster number: 28

Electromyography (EMG) is a technique used for the analysis of electrical activity of skeletal muscles. For this, the electrodes are placed on the surface of the skin to obtain the signals. These signals contain noise, known as artifacts, and is contaminated by signals harmonics from several other muscles.

This work proposes to find a solution to the two possible challenges, namely the speed of the prototype and the angle of the prototype. To overcome these challenges, we need to pre-amplify the signals and remove the artifacts, artifacts will be from other muscles and mainly due to cardiac muscles, which are filtered while keeping in mind not to lose the important data. After the removal of artifacts, we need to characterize the muscle signals based on the data collected. The characterization done using a suitable classifier. The system consists of a control part which maps the position of the manipulator based on the amplitude and frequency of the characterized data. The filtered EMG signals are distinctive to individual pose and can be discriminated using a suitable classifier.

The application of this can be pertinent in the fields of prosthetics, exoskeleton and in the fields of tele-operation and orthosis. The muscle signals are filtered and transmitted to a remotely operated prototype.

Arduino-Based Remote-Controlled Robotic Arm with Recording and Repeating Capabilities
Authors: Anastasiia Babenko, Alexander Guntermann, Scott Ivan, Ervin Lara, Xingguo Xiong  
Poster number: 29

Robotic arms are intensively utilized for various industrial applications such as assembly lines.  They can also be used to perform operations similar to human arms to accomplish tasks under hazardous environment. In this poster, an Arduino-based infrared (IR) remote-controlled robotic arm which can record and repeat a sequence of movements is proposed. It utilizes servo-motors, which have integrated gears and a shaft that can be precisely controlled to change the position of objects, to rotate and move arms and legs of robots. By setting the angle value for each motor’s shaft using input from the IR transmitter located within 80cm from receiver, it can change the position of corresponding links of the arm. When robotic arm is in the desired position, corresponding IR remote button can be pressed to record the angles of all motors with LED lights indicating the number of saved positions. Up to five position savings can be recorded and repeated in a loop so that the robotic arm can be taught to perform certain functions as needed. The Arduino-based smart robotic arm is implemented and it is verified to be able to perform recording and repeating functions as designed. More complicated movements can be programmed so that the robotic arm can be used to perform required operations for potential industrial applications.

Future Internet
Authors: Pritesh Bhavsar, Ivan Sangines Escrig, Kosta Mitrovic, Megha Parikh, Omar Abuzaghleh
Poster number: 30

The internet was created about 40 years ago and is has experienced a huge grow since then. We can now do and compute things which were unimaginable 40 years ago. That is why nowadays one of the most popular topics and one of the most asked questions is how the internet change will or evolve in the future. After doing a deep research about the future internet we can say there is not a official theory or a correct one. Nowadays we can just try to expeculate and predict how the internet is going to grow and change in some years from now. However, we found some assumptions that most of the theories agree with, which we will try to expose and explain.

Synergistic Effect of Electrolysis and Electroporation on Tissue Ablation Volumes Using A Vegetable Model
Authors: Hannah Cabral, Mary Phillips Ho
Poster number: 31

Nonthermal tissue ablation methods have been used to treat a multitude of medical disorders from simple skin growths to solid tumors surrounding neural tissue. Synergistic electroporation and electrolysis (SEE) is a technology that is being studied as a new method of nonthermal tissue ablation that combines reversible electroporation and electrolysis. Reversible electroporation is a method involving pulsed electric fields which creates permeabilizations in the cell membrane. Electrolysis involves a low electric current that is applied over a greater span of time to create chemical species that diffuse through the treated tissue causing drastic changes in cell pH which results in cell death. Ultimately, this combined method results in a more efficient form of tissue ablation.

For this study, a vegetable model was used as a quick, cost-effective method of observing the effects of SEE under various parameters in a controlled environment while minimizing the use of animal experiments. As a homogenous model, the potato was found to be a good alternative that would show results of tissue ablation 24 hours after treatment. However, during this time the potato experiences desiccation that would cause shrinkage of the tissue, affecting the accuracy of the tissue ablation volume. In an attempt to advance this technique, it would be beneficial to have the ability to see the effects of SEE within several hours of treatment. In this study, we developed a method that used food dye to stain the ablated tissue. It was found that within 3 hours of treatment, cell death was detected at the area of ablation where the food dye remained most saturated. This method is crucial in the development of SEE protocol as it offers a quick and effective way to observe tissue ablation.

Development and Psychometric Evaluation of  the Computerized Green Energy Engineering Literacy Test
Authors: Kuo-Feng Chang (The University of Iowa), Shao-Zu Su (National Taiwan Normal University) and Po-Hsi Chen (National Taiwan Normal University)
Poster number: 32

Due to extreme weather and a shortage of fossil fuels, renewable energy education has gained increasing attention in many countries. To measure student’s green energy engineering literacy improvement in relevant training programs in Taiwan, we developed the Computerized Green Energy Engineering Literacy Test and examined its psychometric properties, focusing on reliability analysis. The test contains five contextualized test units. Both knowledge and attitude questions are included in test units which is similar to 2006 PISA Scientific Literacy framework. The test specification contains four content domains (the Concepts of Energy, the Principles and Mediums of Power Generation, Energy Conversion and Storage System, and Real-life Applications) and three cognitive levels (Remembering, Understanding, and Applying) for the knowledge part and four subdomains (Objectivity, Exploring Causality, Critical Thinking, and Scientific Attitude) for the attitude part. The test includes 22 knowledge and 17 attitude questions. 22 knowledge questions are made up of 13 multiple choice, 5 cluster true–false, and 4 short response items. 17 attitude questions are all four-point Likert scale items.

When having various item formats (i.e., mixed item formats) in tests, such as the current case, it is important to consider reliability of composite scores. Moreover, often happening in literacy assessments, having both knowledge and attitude questions (i.e., mixed question types) would further complicate the reliability analysis. Therefore, another goal of this study is to demonstrate the potential for using multivariate generalizability theory to estimate reliability of the composite score.

The study results highlight the important aspects of the green energy engineering literacy, thus future training programs should consider including these aspects. Moreover, this study sheds light on the reliability issues concerning with having both mixed question types and mixed item formats in literacy assessments.

NEO4J - A New Perspective To NoSQL
Authors: Maneesha Mathew, Sairam Boddireddy
Poster number  33

This paper introduces about the concept of graph database and how popular it is becoming in today’s scenario. Also, this paper focuses on one of the top NoSQL graph databases which is, neo4j. Neo4j has become the leading graph database with its graph storage and processing capabilities. Also, we have implemented a web application called A song of Fire and Ice that is related to the popular TV series Game of Thrones. Game of thrones is one of the most popular shows which is famous for the huge number of characters and their relationships with which can have a vast relationship data. We have developed the hierarchy of Game of Thrones. It is called A Song of Fire and Ice. Rather than relational database, one of the popular graph database Neo4j uses graph related concepts to describe this game of thrones data models, the data can easily be divided into nodes, edges and their associated attributes. By focusing on Game of Thrones, Neo4j-based analysis is conducted in this paper. Basically, Neo4j and Cypher Query Language are introduced. Then Neo4j is connected to break down the relationship among key protests in Game of Thrones data which are about families which includes parents, children etc.

Flow Over a Smooth Sphere, Sphere With Dimples and Sphere With Double Dimples.
Authors: Andreina De La Cruz, Kinnari Shah, PhD
Poster number: 34

The aerodynamics of a sphere with dimples like golf balls have been progressively receiving attention. Aerodynamics plays a prominent in defining the flight trajectory of such spheres with dimples. The flow of different fluids around surfaces directly or indirectly impacts many engineering disciplines. It is always remarkable and interesting when the surface comes into contact with a moving fluid that places forces and stresses on the structure. In this work, flow analysis of a simple sphere with a smooth surface, a sphere with the dimples and sphere with double dimples are studied. A comparative study will be done to understand how the surface geometry of the spheres affects the flow pattern and the drag force generated. Also, an analysis of pressure distribution data will be done to identify the low and highpressure zones, fluid vectors and stream lines. SolidWorks and Ansys Fluent software are used for creating 3D models and flow simulation. We will emphasize on flow pattern around each sphere and how dimples change the flow of air around the sphere and cause interesting fluid interaction.

This project is supported by CRSP 201819 (CUNY Research Scholar Program2018/19) Use of Artificial Neural Networks to Identify Fake Profiles
Authors: Abdelrahman Elleithy, Gergo Hajdu, Yaclaudes Minoso, Rafael Lopez, Miguel Acosta
Poster number: 35

In today's digital age, the ever-increasing dependency on computer technology has left the average citizen vulnerable to crimes such as data breaches and possible identity theft. These attacks can occur without notice and often without notification to the victims of a data breach. At this time, there is little incentive for social networks to improve their database security. These breaches often target social media networks such as Facebook and Twitter. They can also target banks and other financial institutions.

Since 2017, Facebook reached a total population of 2.46 billion users making it the most popular choice of social media [1]. Social media networks make revenue from the data generated by the user. The average user does not know that their rights are given up the moment they use the social media network’s service. Companies like Facebook have a lot to gain at the expense of the user. Every time a user shares a new location, new photos, likes, dislikes, tag other users in content posted, etc. Facebook makes revenue via advertisements and data. More specifically, the average American user generates about $26.76 per quarter [2]. That number adds up quickly when millions of users are involved.

There seems to be a newsworthy issue involving social media networks getting hacked every day. Recently, Facebook had a data breach which affected about 50 million users [3]. Facebook provides a set of clearly defined provisions that explain what they do with the user's data. [4] The policy does very little to prevent the constant exploitation of security and privacy. Fake profiles seem to slip through Facebook's built-in security features.

In this paper, we use machine learning, namely an artificial neural network to determine what are the chances that a friend request is authentic or not. Each equation at each neuron (node) is put through a Sigmoid function. We use a training data set by Facebook or other social networks. This would allow our deep learning algorithm to learn the patterns of bot behavior by backpropagation, minimizing the final cost function and adjusting each neuron's weight and bias, changing the equations. In this paper, we outline the classes and libraries involved. We also discuss the sigmoid function and how are the weights determined and used. We will also consider the parameters of the social network page which are the most important to our solution.

Decreasing Clinic Spare Capacity Caused By Patient No-Shows
Authors: Jacqueline Fabian, Laura Bacchiocchi, BS; Corey Kiassat,PhD,MBA,PE
Poster number: 36

This research project aims to decrease spare capacity created due to a high patient no-show rate at a federally-qualified health clinic network. When patients fail to attend their appointment, a certain number of walk-in patients are seen by providers. A Lean Six Sigma framework is used to minimize the no-show rate and increase walk-in patients seen, thereby improving productivity. The current average rate of patient no-shows is 37.86%. The average percentage of walk-ins to cover patient no-show is 17.29%, leading to a clinic-wide spare capacity of 20.57%. The goal is to reduce the no-show rate by 34% to a client-specified rate of 25% and fulfill the remaining spare capacity by walk-ins.

This work-in-progress research project analyzes one year of data across five locations, 85 providers, and several specialties. Under the current practice, patients receive a text message two days prior to their appointment, asking for an attendance confirmation. In addition to the variables of location, provider, and specialty, along with patient responses to messages, patient age, the previous record of no-shows, as well as seasonality (time/day/month) are variables to analyze.

To improve the overall utilization of provider capacity, various notification methods will be tried in a design-of-experiment framework. Moreover, as a result of the analyses of the aforementioned variables, predictors will be recommended to better allow for walk-ins ahead of high-risk patients in terms of no-shows. This will improve the overall utilization of provider capacity.

Light Weight Concrete
Authors: Anuja Kamat, William J. Cashel-Cordo, James Sullivan, Matthew M. Medeiros, Evan Dimatteo
Poster number: 37

Concrete is the single most commonly used material in the world. It also has a very large carbon footprint. The reason for having such a large carbon footprint is that so much of concrete is used. It is usually known as a strong and heavy construction material. As such, it has very large self-weight. Reducing the self-weight of concrete would reduce the quantity of concrete needed. This would in turn make concrete structured sustainable. This is especially true for suspended floors and skyscraper applications. The goal of this undergraduate research project was to design a mix which would have a unit weight of 70 pcf. A light weight concrete mix was designed, and numerous cylinders were made of each mix design and tested in compression at 7 days and in tension at 21 days. Each mix was built off the previous designs to find a compromise between weight and strength through a form of trial and error. It was observed that the compressive strength of the mix did reduce as the unit weight of the concrete reduced. However, since the load on the concrete member was reduced, the impact of the reduction in compressive strength was not significant.

Porous Concrete
Authors: Anuja Kamat, Bella Chau, John-Paul Noe, William J. Cashel-Cordo
Poster number: 38

Porous concrete is a specialized concrete with high porosity. It is used for constructing pavement to allow the water from precipitation and other resources such as runoff to pass through and exit into the ground. The permeable characteristic of porous concrete speeds up the drainage process. Therefore, the applications of porous concrete are usually for the finishing layer of subgrades such as pavement, parking lot, and sidewalk etc.

In this undergraduate research project, porous concrete used for casting the pavement blocks is tested. The main objective was to find an appropriate mix design to satisfy the requirements for qualified porous concrete. The samples of porous concrete were then tested for permeability and the compressive strength.

A local company got in touch with our school to help them test their pavement blocks to evaluate if a car could drive over a pavement made of these blocks. After carefully investigating the project, doing literature review and analysis, the project was divided in two phases: In Phase 1, the concrete mix made was exactly as made by the industry partner and tested. In Phase 2 improvements were made to the mix design and the same tests were carried out.

Roman Concrete
Authors: Anuja Kamat, Alex Macon, Carmen A. Leung, Brett D. Lebel
Poster number: 39

Concrete as we know usually has a life span of 50-70 years. Romans built structures out of concrete and thousands of years later, we see that the structures still stand. The purpose of this experiment was to investigate the mix design and materials of Roman concrete. Researchers have tried to replicate the Roman concrete for ages but have not yet found the perfect mix. The standard mix was found to include volcanic ash, volcanic rock, sea water, and some form of calcium oxide (CaO). Calcium oxide and volcanic ash both have important chemical reactions with water/seawater that gives Roman concrete its longevity. Seashells (limestone, CaCO3) was likely the Roman’s source of CaO, because when heated at high temperatures, CaCO3 produces CaO and carbon dioxide (CaCO3 + heat -> CaO + CO2). Several attempts were made to make roman concrete. The first was to heat the sea shells to 900 degrees Celsius. There was no reaction and we believe that the sea shells likely need to be heated and held at 900o C. The next attempt was to use Ca(OH)2 in place of CaO. This did not work as well. In the third try, Oxalic acid and Calcium Hydroxide were combined. The results of this were interesting but the strengths obtained were not as strong as expected. The ambitious goal of finding the roman concrete mix was not fulfilled. However, we are one step closer to understanding it.

Bioprinting of Nano-composite Implants in Bone Tissue Engineering
Authors: Vijay Vedhan Jayanthi Harikrishnan, Dr. Sarosh Patel, Dr. Tae Won B Kim, Dr. Prabir Patra
Poster number: 40

Graphene based medical implants have sparked widespread interests  in the field of 3D bioprinting due to its anti-microbial nature, very large aspect ratio associated with its 2D structures, and its  ability to form functionally graded printable structures with polymers. Here we explore the 3D printing of Poly L-lactic acid/Graphene oxide (PLA/GO) nano-composite for its anti-microbial property as bone implant and scaffold for bone cell proliferation. The nanocomposites were prepared through FDM (Fused deposition modelling) and our laboratory built LDM (Liquid deposition modelling) 3D printing.   GO was dispersed in 1,4 Dioxane solvent using ultrasonication followed by dissolving PLA in the GO dispersions.  LDM utilized the viscosity driven controlled stretching of the PLA/GO solution to print the solid structural form onto a heated bed that vaporizes the solvent and leaves behind the required structure. For the FDM process, the nano-composite was fed in the form of a filament. We utilized the dried and powdered form of the nanocomposites to form the essential PLA/GO filaments structures using the filament extruder.  We plan to integrate electrostatic jetting of PLA/GO nanocomposites through the micro nozzle using FDM system for attaining controlled porosity and microstructure, thereby closely mimicking the bone microenvironment. Anti-microbial activity of GO was measured with staphylococcus aureus, 60% reduction of bacterial growth was achieved.

An Application: Audio Surveillance System Design
Authors: Yusuf Ozkan, Professor Buket Barkana, Caokun Yang
Poster number: 41

In this study, we propose an audio event recognition framework to detect suspicious acoustic events. Security is one of the sectors that have been getting more importance and demand in the last quarter-century.  This demand is not only about data safety or cyber-security, but also is to keep public places and personal properties secure. Integration of environmental sound surveillance systems to IP cameras provides an advantage in order to overcome some of the challenges of video surveillance systems. Using audio surveillance gives additional information like the exact moment of abnormal sound events that might occur out of the range of cameras. In our work, mel-frequency cepstral coefficients (MFCCs), energy, pitch range (PR), and linear prediction coding (LPC) feature sets were extracted and evaluated on an open-access DASE database, which has nine sound events as glass breaking, dog barking, scream, gunshot, explosions, police sirens, door slams, footsteps, and house alarm sounds.  Gaussian mixture model (GMM), k-nearest-neighbor model (KNN), and support vector machine (SVM) classifiers are used. All classifiers achieved promising accuracy rates.

MEMS Piezoelectric Vibration Energy Harvester with Multiple Resonant Frequencies
Authors: Jing Zhao, Xingguo Xiong, Peiqiao Wu
Poster number: 42

MEMS (Microelectromechanical Systems) vibrational energy harvester can collect vibrational energy from surrounding environment and convert it into electrical energy, so that it can be stored in battery for future use. Due to their small size and quick response, they can be embedded in shoes, under the ground surface of busy streets to harvest energy which otherwise would be wasted. In this poster, a MEMS vibrational energy harvester with multiple nested beam-frame structure is proposed. Due to its nested structure, it has 3 cantilever beams leading to three different resonant frequencies. This allows it to harvest energy at three different frequencies, hence improves its energy output. The device is designed and simulated in COMSOL. Modal simulation is used to find the multiple resonant frequencies of the device. COMSOL piezoelectric simulation is used to verify the pieozoelectric response of the MEMS energy harvester at different frequencies. The proposed MEMS energy harvester can collect vibration energy with improved frequency response.

Data Analysis using Multi-model NoSQL: ArangoDB
Authors:  Jagrithi Palachanda Chittiappa, Manasi Bhurange
Poster number: 43

It is a tedious and challenging task when it comes to selecting a right database for a new project. One would always go for different data models for different architectures, as “one size does not always fit all.” So this basically leads us to use multiple databases for the same project having different types of data. To eradicate this issue, multi-model databases and a NoSQL approach came into trend. In a multi-model database, data can be stored as key/value pairs, graph or documents and can be accessed with a single processing query language. This is how a multi-model database would work.

ArangoDB helps us minimize the disadvantages of SQL databases. It is a multi-model database that can analyze a graph, key-value or a document based data. It also helps increase performance and flexibility.

Enhanced Machine Learning Engine Engineering Using Innovative Blending, Tuning, and Feature Optimization
Authors: Muhammad Uddin
Poster number: 44

This Poster presents the fundamentals & internals of the proposed enhanced Machine Learning process. Block diagrams, Internal System diagrams, key mathematical constructs, necessary high-level internal algorithms (i.e., Pseudocode), corroboration examples with the real-world data, and validation results are presented. Noteworthy Graphs are shown to constructively discuss the research conducted and contribution made.

This Poster discusses three main challenges; i) determining the optimum blend of methods for Supervised Learning ensemble models, ii) engineering the selection and grouping of features that aggregate to the highest possible predictive and non-redundant value in the training data set, and iii) addressing the performance integrity and validation indemnity such as accuracy paradox and metrics trade-off.

To address these challenges, this poster introduces eMLEE internals as motivated by stochastic thinking, nature inspired algorithms, OOP paradigm, and higher dimensional analysis (i.e., 3D). eMLEE is innovatively built with mathematical constructs to optimally compute, quantify, and score the classifier elements.

eMLEE is built on; i) one centralized unit as Logical Table unit ii) two explicit units as enhanced Algorithm Blend and Tuning and enhanced Feature Engineering and Selection, and iii) two implicit constructs as enhanced Weighted Performance Metric and enhanced Cross Validation and Split.

Two approaches are followed to validate the engine, a) testing inner layers (i.e., internal constructs) of the engine to affirm the stability and check the fundamentals, and b) testing outer layer (i.e., engine as a black box) with standard metrics for the real-world endorsement.

eMLEE is found to be outperforming the existing techniques in most of the tests in terms of the classifier learning, generalization, metrics trade-off, optimum-fitness, feature engineering, and validation.

Poster Presentation finally aims to encourage and initiate future developments in perspective, knowledge of the relevant resources & references, scholars’ and students’ research collaboration via productive Q/A session with the audience and judges.

Painless blood glucose test
Authors: Yadi Wang
Poster number: 45

Diabetes has become one of the most important non-communicable diseases that threaten global health (Zhang, Du, & Wang, 2015b). It is affected by genetic factors and environmental factors, with high incidence and complicated mechanism. Diabetes patients cannot be effectively controlled due to blood sugar, persistent high blood sugar and long-term metabolic disorders can lead to complications, these complications are the main cause of death and disability of diabetic patients, has become a huge threat to health. Wearable portable sensors connect to smart devices according to personal circumstances, with the support of big data, home electronics doctors will also be a breakthrough in the future. With the deep understanding of the disease-causing genes, genetic testing for diabetes or genetic prediction of diabetes will also be a very useful clinical technology in the future. The study is divided into two parts. The first part is the polygenic inheritance of type 1 diabetes, environmental factors, autoimmune system and natural history, and genetic factors of type 2 diabetes, insulin resistance and β cell function defects, glucose. Monotherapy and lipotoxicity, as well as genetic analysis. The second part is an advanced detection method for diabetes, such as using saliva, sweat or urine instead of blood as an analytical sample. And use biosensors for data analysis and delivery. Effectively prevent and control the occurrence of diabetes by understanding the pathogenic factors of diabetes and advanced testing methods.

A computational approach for cancer invasion manipulation through ECM arrangement
Authors: Antara Pal, Pegi Haliti, and Wu Qi | Advisor: Dr. Bhushan Dharmadikhari, Co-Advisor: Dr. Prabir Patra
Poster number: 46

Cancer metastasis contributes to 90% of cancer mortalities worldwide and is considered the final stage of cancer invasion. In this study, we focus on the interactions between cancer cells and the Extracellular Matrix (ECM) through the Cellular Potts Model (CPM), a lattice- based model that simulates the behavior of cellular structure. Our study distinctly models collagen fibers as continuous strands, which mirror the collagen fibers in the human body. In contrast, most previous studies have modeled collagen fibers as shortened line segments. To investigate the significance of ECM arrangement in metastasis, we simulate cancer migration through parallel linear fibers and randomized curved fibers using the software package CompuCell3D. The results show that, after 1000 MCS, parallel linear fibers allow increased cellular motility with minimal fiber degradation of 3309 pixels, while randomized curved fibers restrict cellular motility with high fiber degradation of 3919 pixels. When analyzing MMP secretion of the varying arrangements, the parallel linear fibers were found to produce high MMP secretion, while randomized curved fibers produce low MMP secretion. Furthermore, the parallel linear arrangement results in high cell velocity, while the randomized curved fibers reveal low cell velocity. It is also believed that cancer cells remodel the ECM to express wavy characteristics in order to facilitate cancer cell migration. When investigating the effect of the wave-like fiber arrangement on metastasis, the results show fewer fiber degradation of 3143 pixels, higher MMP secretion, and higher cell velocity than the randomized curved fibers. To restrict metastasis, collagen fibers may be altered to form a circular structure to confine the cancer cells. Results show minimal fiber degradation of 2608 pixels, lower MMP secretion, and decreased cell velocity when compared to the parallel linear fibers. Overall, manipulating the fiber environment may decrease metastasis and ultimately save countless lives.

Structural determination of bacteriocin protein using NMR and study of protein-protein  interaction using  molecular technique
Authors: Mamta Hajra
Poster number: 47

Bacteriocin are emerging as an interesting group of biomolecules with the antimicrobial properties that may be represented as a potential biological alternative to replace antibiotics. A bacterial product of Bifidobacterium animalis subsp lactis, culture at 37   ̊C in MRS media will be followed by optimization of the ammonia sulfate precipitation test. Sample purification using dialysis method and quantification analysis will be done by measuring the concentration at 595 nm absorbance. Objective of this research work will be to assess the antimicrobial activity of produced bacteriocin like protein against pathogenic strain. Further, structural determination of the protein will be experimentally done using X-ray crystallography or Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy. The technique of molecular docking can be used to study the protein-protein interaction of bacteriocin against pathogenic strain. We believe this study could help us discover the potential characteristics of bacteriocin as a useful alternative replacing antibiotic.

Using Signal Processing Techniques to Detect Sleep Apnea Events
Authors: Kareem Saleh, Kai Chen, Dr. Navarun Gupta
Poster number: 48

Nowadays, with the development of modern technology, one can detect sleep apnea by using the Electroencephalography (EEG), Electrocardiography (ECG), blood pressure (BP) and Respiration rates (RR) sensors. These powerful instruments will allow us to detect the electrical impulses with the use of electrodes, which are small flat metal discs that attach to the different areas of the body. Electrodes will be used to read and detect the electrical impulses from the body and then be graphically displayed on the EEG, ECG, and RR. These signals are recorded in time domain, however in order for us to extract the vital information from the signals we must analyze them in frequency domain. Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder characterized by pauses in breathing or periods of shallow breathing during sleep. Each pause can last for a few seconds to a few minutes and they happen numerous times a night. From this research it is apparent that sleep apnea episodes cause significant changes in the RR, EEG, and ECG. Preliminary analysis on the RR will act as our main indicator for sleep apnea, then by performing signal processing techniques along with detailed analysis on the EEG and ECG, we will be able to determine and explain major deviations in these signals. This research will examine sleep apnea, how to understand it and in doing so determining the best methods of detection using several signal processing techniques. By doing so we hope to help physicians further improve their detection methods and accuracy.

Induced Reflexes by Electrostimulation of Flexor Muscles
Authors: Soo Han Kim, Jenna Malloy, Neo Nyoni , Ethan Scanlan, Balasubramaniam Maheswaran  
Poster number: 49

Around the 1950s, electrostimulation was determined as an effective method to increase and restore muscle strength. Modern electrostimulation is used in physical therapy to manage pain and rehabilitate several different muscular ailments. However, there is a stark gap in the cost and effectiveness of currently available electrostimulation devices. Patients are oftentimes limited to large, expensive equipment that can only be used in a clinical setting, or to commercial, inexpensive devices that are ineffective and lack durability. In this paper, we describe a solution to this dilemma by creating a hybrid product between the two situations. Our design included a flexible arm sleeve with embedded electrodes that stimulated the flexor digitorum superficialis using a function generator to apply electricity to the forearm. For data acquisition, flex sensors and a heart rate monitor were used to evaluate the effectiveness of our device. The raw data from these sensors were then plotted using the Arduino IDE Serial Plotter as a function graph with respect to time. In the parameters of 30-100 Hz within a voltage between 0-10 V, the apparatus was able to produce full flexion in digits 2-5. In the future we would like to utilize a custom power supply that would be more practical and make the device more cost-effective. Furthermore, to eliminate the need of an external monitor for telemetry, the implementation of embedded LCD displays is also in consideration.

Smart Lights: Saving Wasted Energy by Sensing and Adapting to the Natural Light in a Room
Authors: Jessica Walsh, James Wachala, Ivan Kartashov, Christian Free, and Bala Maheswaran
Poster number: 50

The objective of our work is to reduce wasted energy. We are dealing with a commonplace system: lighting. Lighting has grown significantly more efficient thanks to newer, innovative designs. Typically, when one thinks of lighting, the first thing they picture is a warm, incandescent light. It is incredible that a design developed almost two hundred years ago is still usable today, but it is now clearly outdated when compared to newer technologies. Incandescent bulbs are incredibly inefficient, wasting almost 90% of their used energy as heat. Newer designs, such as LED lights, can use eighty-percent less energy to produce the same amount of light. The primary goal of our project is to design a device that can further increase the efficiency of LED lighting by taking into account the changing ambient light in a room, and dimming the lights accordingly.

Worldwide energy usage is constantly increasing, and new methods of producing and saving energy is important to keep up with the growing demand. In the U.S., 7% of all electricity produced is use for lighting, meaning more efficient lighting methods could save significant amounts of energy. Looking at the current infrastructure, and the recent rise of “smart home” tech, we have developed a lighting system that saves energy by dimming LED lights to account for the natural light in a room. In this paper, we describe the implementation of this system using inexpensive, widely available components. We estimate that our design would save significant amounts of energy when integrated into modern, large-scale buildings.

Decision Analysis using Simple Multi Attribute Rating Technique: A Case Study on School Employee Laptop Replacement
Authors: Luja Shrestha, James Accuosti, Haitham Allam
Poster number: 51

In today’s classrooms, laptop and classroom technologies like smart boards have become a critical part of the learning environment. It is important to have these devices working properly. A slow or broken device can waste valuable time and cause frustration. We consider a case study where school employee laptops are old and need replacement. We consider the available options and use Simple Multi Attribute Rating Technique (SMART) to decide the most desirable laptop. SMART is based on a linear additive model. This means that an overall value of a given alternative is calculated as the total sum of the performance score (value) of each criterion (attribute) multiplied with the weight of that criterion. Our objective is to maximize employee productivity. Attributes of laptops considered in the decision making are design, feature, and performance and battery life.

Study of a Closed Loop Cooling System for High Performance Electronics
Authors: Sreenadh Sribhashyam, Kunti Laguri, Advisor: Junling Hu
Poster number: 52

Increasing demand for smaller, more portable and higher performance devices increases power density in electronics devices. Thermal management is essential in high performance electronics to remove heat generated by the devices and thus improve reliability and enhances performances. The tremendous growth in electronic equipment demands innovative solutions to the new challenges of thermal management. Active cooling systems have been installed in the high performance electronics systems to remove the excessive heat. Traditionally fans and heat sink fans are used as means of air cooling systems, but fan noise level increases with high performances electronics. Liquid cooling can be more effective as compared to air cooled system due to its lower budget and quieter application. A Closed loop cooling system can easily meet the demands of high heat loads, low thermal resistance and reduced noise. Using liquid as a cooling method may to lead to vibration free and smooth operation system. This paper is on the experimental and numerical studies of a closed loop liquid cooling system for a high performance electronic device. The closed loop cooling system consists of a cold plate, a heat exchanger, a pump, a reservoir, and hoses connecting the components. The aluminum cold plate consisting of M shaped flow channels is attached to a heat source for effective transfer of heat from the heat source to the liquid. And a highly efficient liquid to air heat exchanger transfers the heat to air by forced convection. Water is used as the coolant and is circulated in the closed system through a pump. The flat tube heat exchanger is made of aluminum flat tubes with fins attached to the tubes at the air side. Air flow is forced through the heat exchanger fins by a fan. Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) models of the cold plate and the heat exchanger have been developed to study the heat transfer and fluid flow in these devices. Experimental and CFD studies have been conducted to understand the heat transfer and fluid flow in the cold plate and the heat exchanger and their influence on the electronics device, and to study the effect of coolant flow rate on the dissipation of heat in the closed loop system.

A Multiscale Computational Approach of Stem Cells Differentiation and Proliferation on Electrospun Polycaprolactone-Graphene Scaffold
Authors: Pegi Haliti, Qi Wu, Debika Debnath, Bhushan Dharmadikhari, Prabir Patra
Poster number: 22

The purpose of this study is to fabricate nanofibrous polycaprolactone-graphene (PCL-GRA) scaffolds for neuronal differentiation and investigate subcellular and cellular level interactions of cells with the scaffold by using VMD (Visual Molecular Dynamics), NAMD (Nanoscale Molecular Dynamics) simulation and Cellular Potts Model (CPM), respectively. We established a system that contains graphene and PCL to investigate the interaction between these two components. 10 chains of PCL with the length of 14 nm are placed on the top of 5 nm × 5 nm graphene sheet randomly. The center of the mass distance of these two is set as 10 Å. Corresponding energy and morphological analysis have been carried out after 10 ns simulation. Results showed a strong attractive interaction exists in this system. In addition, the stretched PCL chains approach and fit the size of the graphene surface during the 10 ns simulation (Figure 1). CompuCell3d is the environment we use to implement and simulate the CPM model. Cell-cell and cell-scaffold adhesion energy have a significant role in cell’s proliferation and alignment. Our biological observations provide cues that neuron cells tend to align in the PCL –graphene scaffold when a certain concentration of graphene is used, and that alignment of cells might be due to the tendency to go up gradient when the rigidity of the substrate is increased due to graphene. Compucell3d simulation is shown in figure 2. Further mechano-transduction studies are needed to understand the differentiation and the alignment of cells in the scaffold.

Theme: Student Projects

Designing the hour.ly app using computer science principles
Authors: Berra Barkana
Poster number: 69

This paper presents an app named hour.ly that is programmed using MIT App Inventor. The purpose of the app is to remind the user of small tasks via SMS. This easy-to-use app runs on Android devices with texting enabled. The texts may be sent to any valid phone number. The user goes through three stages when using the app: the sign in screen, the home screen, and the add task screen. I created this app for my AP Computer Science Principles (CSP) class, which is one of the technology classes offered at Masuk High School in Monroe, Connecticut. AP CSP engages high school students to pursue careers based in engineering and technology. This paper explains the process of creating hour.ly. Furthermore, the experiences of myself, my classmates, and the course instructor are discussed.

UBTalker: Improving Quality of Life Through Interdisciplinary Collaboration
Authors: Zachary Tenenbaum,  MacKenzie Bardsley,Corey Ropell, Ian Kaminer, William Phillips,Michael Mincone, Goktug Geneci,Himani Vishal Dodeja,Haya Vora, Samuel Marchant, Joshua Suttenberg, Thomas Depaola, Vaughn Shorter, Matthew Rwasenge, Megan Yoerg
Poster number: 70

We represent an interdisciplinary team of students studying to be computer engineers, computer scientists, and nurses that is developing advanced communication devices to improve the quality of life of those who have damage to their motor cortex and/or the ability to communicate. We are aiming to create a device/software that allows patients with MS/ALS to be able to communicate with others, as well as their surrounding environment. Our input devices consist of an eye tracker, a brain-computer interface (BCI), touch interfacing, and an auto-scan system with single/dual button control. BCI is a communication device that allows brain waves to control computers or external devices. It reads motor and speech cortexes and interprets these brain signals to convert thoughts to words and actions.The BCI has the potential to distinguish brain-wave patterns that will recognize single letters or words to perform text-to-speech communication. Auto-scan is a tool that highlights various input options to narrow down a search in an efficient manner. Considering the physical limitations of our clients this is a crucial feature for them to use the product unhindered by physical limitations. We are also including some external environmental controls where the client can control the TV, lights, fans, and multimedia devices.  Our team works with community members and local nursing facilities to find individuals in need of alternative communication.  As a group, we have a wide perspective and understanding that enhances the support we are able to develop for patients. Each field may have a different perspective or idea so we unite in pursuit of the same goal to provide the best assistance possible.

An IoT-based Smart Trash Detector based on Wireless Sensor Networks
Authors: Reza Abrishambaf, Thitibhorn Sobhanabhikul, Goshen Matoumbi, Nathaniel Anderson
Poster number: 71

Between the disposable whole of the consumer society and the disempowerment of consumers, the volume of household waste continues to grow. Waste management and recycling are two central elements in the fight against climate change, but having several bins and managing your waste can sometimes be complicated because of the lack of time, money or knowledge.

The key issue in the waste management is that the garbage bins at public localities begins to overflow well in advance before the commencement of the next cleaning routine. It, in turn, leads to various hazards such as bad odor and ugliness to that place which may be the root cause for the spread of various diseases. A healthy environment is imperative to a healthy and a happy community, so this problem needs to be tackled smartly. As the Internet of Things (IoT) is giving solutions to everyday problems, the smart bin is now an interesting alternative to help people on a daily basis by providing a real-time indicator of the garbage level in a trash can at any given time.

The purpose of this project is to help control the environmental waste system through the IoT concept, a cloud and application which involve connecting any device or object using the Internet. This project specifically focuses on linking the common trash can to the Internet in order to monitor waste levels from any place, at any time. To achieve the desire result, the project uses three main components: Arduino microcontroller, Ultra sensor, Wi-Fi and a trash bin. Aside from that the project will be conducted on two main software: Arduino IDE and an android application.

This is a senior design project of a group of engineering technology students.

Selection of Hybrid Sedans 2018 Using EBA and SMART Methods
Authors: Emeka Agu, Mariam Kimeridze, Prajwal Raghubansh
Poster number: 72

This Paper focused on Hybrid Vehicles Technology in addition to its incorporation into the culture and its affordability to Average American Citizens. In this project, we selected Hybrid Sedans 2018 Vehicle and assigning criteria that will help to narrow down our best option using EBA and SMART methods to analyze our result. The challenging issues that was answered in this paper was whether hybrids meet the desires for people buying the vehicle and its environmental friendliness as regard combustion.

EBA is considered to faithfully reflect on consumers choices than other traditional models. Setting a goal is part of a decision-making process, in fact, an area where a decision is likely to go wrong is when there is no goal, or a goal is unclear.

EBA and SMART decision-making frameworks are proposed to be used to elicit the quality and structural preference of hybrid sedans among interested customers. The rule of decision to be used in making EBA and SMART decisions will be individual and non-compensatory, aiming to bring out the decision rules to be used by decision makers in ranking the options of hybrid sedans presented. The decision framework will incorporate different criteria types and simplify relevant communication related to the hybrid sedans options for multiple interested individuals.

At the end of this project, we will reach out to interested individuals for input on decisions concerning the choice of hybrid sedans while refraining from the criteria weights set by the hybrid manufacturers; to reduce the expert role in the decision-making process. The project also seeks to establish what models the decision-making from deterministic to a probabilistic approach. We will also seeks to identify the consensus of the hybrids ranking, and to determine the value of criteria emerging at the top while making such choices.

Solar-energy Powered Smart Irrigation System
Authors: Sultan Alkhaldi, Khalid Alkhaldi, Mohammed Alnaimi and Xingguo Xiong
Poster number: 73

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, estimates that agriculture accounts for 70% of all water consumption. Critical need exists to implement water conservation practices in agriculture. In countries or regions (e.g. deserts) with dry climate, water is especially valuable resource. There is an urgent need to create strategies based on science and technology for sustainable use of water. With increase in global warming, more remote areas will need to be cultivated, meaning far more areas will need to have access to water. Traditional irrigation systems did not consider watering efficiency in their design, hence resulting in huge waste. In this project, we aim at developing an Arduino-based smart irrigation system to maximize the watering efficiency with reduced waste. It uses sensors to monitor the humidity and temperature surrounding the plants. Arduino microcontroller is used to analyze these data and decide when to turn on the watering pump and for how long. Thus water is delivered only when it is needed, and the amount of water being delivered will be precisely controlled. The whole system is automatic and no human interference is needed. It is especially suitable for large farm with different watering needs for different areas. Furthermore, a photovoltaic solar panel is used to harvest energy from the sun and store it as electric energy in rechargeable batteries. The harvested solar energy will be used to drive the whole system to work. A set of motors are precisely controlled by Arduino microcontroller to automatically rotate the solar panel to trace the direction of sunlight. This ensures it’s always facing the sunlight to maximize the solar energy harvesting efficiency. The solar energy is totally “green” with no carbon emission. The proposed green and smart irrigation system has been implemented based on Arduino platform. If being widely used in farms, it can significantly save water and reduce carbon emission, hence protecting our planet for sustainable development.

Gesture and sound controlled the trainable robot arm via bluetooth
Authors:  Sihao Lan,  Shuangquan Fu
Poster number: 74

Nowadays, there are more and more expectations that there are some new objects can help humans out from the dangerous, complicated and repeated works. Humans desire that robotics can scout the lives, inform the people and do the rescues instead of human themselves when the earthquakes happen. In the meantime, industrial robotics are expected to work for 24 hours in some hazardous circumstances where there is a high temperature or filled with heavy-metal gases. So there has been an increasingly influential trend over the study of robots.

Gesture and sound controlled a robot arm is a robotic arm that can move with your mobile phone or by the sensors from your phone. And you can make it repeat the several steps precisely or record and play your movement. Even you can use the sound to control the movement of this roboti arm. So it can be used in the industry to work with dupliocate works for 24 hours or used to for the robotic amateur to learn controls&robotics, app development, and Arduino learning.

Forefoot Torsional and Bending Flexibility Platform for Injury Diagnostic and Orthotic Prescription
Authors: Connor Aikens-Kinney, Theo Assing, Jack Harrison, Paula Strautmane, Jose Riofrio, Juan Garbalosa
Poster number: 75

This poster presents the design and development of a two-degree of freedom portable device that measures the torsional flexibility (inversion and eversion) and bending flexibility (dorsiflexion and plantarflexion) of an athlete’s forefoot. The overarching goal of the device is for clinicians to study the correlation between stiffness of forefoot ligaments and proneness to certain injuries. Current practices of treatment and injury prevention are based on clinicians’ experience rather than measurable properties of ligaments. There are no current devices on the market that addresses this problem and provide a precise, user-friendly, and dependable means of diagnosing forefoot injuries and prescribing orthotics.

The device works by securing a patient’s heel in place and grabbing the forefoot with a 2-DOF gimbal mechanism which applies twist (inversion/eversion) and bending (dorsiflexion/plantarflexion). The gimbal is powered by a DC motor (which generates torsional motion) and a linear actuator (which generates bending motion). Strain-based load cells are implemented to measure the torsional and bending torques experienced by the forefoot. Twist angle is measured via an analog potentiometer, and bending angle is measured with a non-contact magnetostrictive displacement transducer.  Measurements are collected using an NI USB 6001 data acquisition device, and a LabVIEW program provides user-interface to the clinician. There are two manual power cutoff fail-safe switches, one operated by the clinician and the other operated by the patient, to ensure the patient is not injured or feels any discomfort during the test.  There are also torque and angle of twist cutoffs programmed into the software and a hard stop on the rotating platform to further ensure safety.

This device will serve as a tool to gain a better understanding of foot anatomy and the overall relationship between ligament stiffness and joint movement quality.

IoT based Smart Mirror
Authors: Soumil Shah
Poster number: 76

Our lifestyle has evolved so that time optimization is the most important thing. Devices that can be made smarter with the help of adequate technology never end. This poster describes the design and development of a futuristic intelligent mirror which is an unobtrusive interface for the home and office environment. The mirror provides a natural means of interaction through which residents can control smart appliances in their homes and access personalized services. Emphasis is also placed on ensuring convenience in accessing these services with a minimum user intervention. The mirror offers basic facilities such as city weather, time and news.

Analysis of Human activities on Smart Devices Using Riak-TS
Authors: Hindhuja Dhanasekaran, Siddharth Selvam
Poster number: 77

In this paper we have implemented Riak TS which is a time series-based database. It is a key value-based database and has time as important parameter. During the implementation of the project we have understood the installation process, loading the data and also analyzing the data using Riak TS. By doing complex querying we learnt how time plays a crucial role in understanding the data and analyzing them to visualize.

Solar Powered Lawn Mower
Authors: Abdullah Alkhater, Abdullah Almelehi, Yuosuf Alqubaisi
Poster number:78

Each weekend, about 54 million Americans mow their lawns, using 800 million gallons of gas per year and producing tons of air pollutants. Garden equipment engines, which have had unregulated emissions until the late 1990's, emit high levels of carbon monoxide, volatile organic compounds and nitrogen oxides, producing up to 5% of the USA’s air pollution and a good deal more in metropolitan areas. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), a new gas-powered lawn mower produces volatile organic compounds and nitrogen oxides emissions air pollution in in in one hour of operation as 11 new cars each being driven for one hour. The solar powered lawn mower is aa fully autonomous robot with capabilities to cut the grass independently.  The robot uses 12v batteries to power itself and all the sensors. The motors to help move the robot and the grass cutter are controlled by and Arduino microcontroller that controls the movement based on incoming data from the ultrasonic sensors used for object detection and the humidity sensors to check for the non-grassy areas. The 12-volt battery is continuous charged by a solar panel housed on the top of the robot that also acts as a secure panel for weatherproofing the sensors underneath. The robot is compact and very cheap in comparison to any product in the market. The most common solar powered robot called the Robomow costs an upwards of $2000 and needs a technical installation. The solution presented here has a simple self-serve placement right out of the box. There is no technical installation required, no setup required and it is substantially cheaper than any current market solution while being environmentally friendly.

Arduino-based Remote Controlled Vehicle for Package Delivery
Authors: Dillon Ambersley, Travis Sanders, Paul Grant, Joshua Estradas, Xingguo Xiong
Poster number:79

With the increased popularity of online shopping, large amount of packages need to be quickly delivered to the customers from merchandise dispatch center on daily basis. Traditional delivery method solely relies on human labor to deliver the package, which is costly in labor and inefficient in time. As a low-cost alternative, remote-controlled vehicle could be used to replace human labor for automated package delivery. In this project, an Arduino-based remote controlled vehicle for package delivery is developed. It uses Arduino Mega microcontroller combined with GPS for guided navigation of the vehicle to deliver package to the designated location. The vehicle is equipped with a set of four DC motors, which can be controlled individually with Arduino-based remote control. The Arduino programming, real-time tracking control and wireless signal transmission are essential for the proper maneuvering of the car. Factors including illicit theft and damaging of vehicle is also taken into account when using the delivery service. The automated package delivery vehicle is successfully implemented. It could be used for next-generation automated package delivery application.

Secure Mailbox
Authors: Yiheng  Liu, Diya Peng, Zhaopeng Xu, Hanging Liu
Poster number:80

Nowadays, packages are lost or stolen when delivered to a homeowner's front door. In this poster, the design and simulation of a secure mailbox is demonstrated using Arduino UNO REV3 and GSM 1400. Packages are delivered and retrieved from a secure box using the customer's phone number. The owner of the mailbox receives a 6-digit code that can be used to open the box and retrieve the package. The mailbox is "unlocked" after the package is taken out. The control system works with a keypad, two displays (LCD and LED), a controller (Arduino MKR GSM 1400) and a motor. The keypad inputs numbers to open the mailbox. The LEDs display the status of the mailbox (empty or not). The LCD displays messages to be read by the delivery man and home owner. The motor controls the mailbox's locking mechanism. The Arduino control sends a verification code to the homeowner's cell.

MQTT and ROC Based Hybrid Robot as a Service (RaaS) Platform
Authors: Pritesh Bhavsar | Advisor: Sarosh Patel, Tarek Sobh
Poster number: 81

Robots are rapidly evolving from factory work-horses to robot-companions. The future of robots will be as companions in the workplace functioning as interactive salespeople. In order to support this transition, it is important to combine service-oriented architecture and robotics. Service-oriented architecture and cloud computing have become dominant computing paradigms, and adding an RaaS (Robot as a Service) unit as a part of this system will help the companies manage and develop robots more efficiently. The major components of RaaS will be the integration of RMS (Robot Management System) and ROC (Robot Operation Center). As more and more robots are increasing in the service industry, the inter-robot communication is very critical. This communication can be achieved by ROC and the robots can be monitored remotely or locally via RMS. The RaaS platform will comply with all the standards of SOA (Service Oriented Architecture) like the development platform and execution unit, thereby creating a flexible and more development-friendly process.

Arduino Breathalyzer
Authors: Jonathan Brooks, Christopher Martucci, Kalid James, Noble Mathew, Xingguo Xiong
Poster number: 82

Getting behind the wheel of a vehicle after consuming large amounts of alcohol is serious and very dangerous. Driving after drinking is referred to as driving under the influence or driving while intoxicated. It involves driving a vehicle with a blood alcohol content of at least 0.08 percent. In this project, we used the Arduino platform to build an alcohol breathalyzer that will determine the blood alcohol concentration based on breath analysis. For this project, we used an Arduino Uno board as the main controller of the system. , which is the brain of the project. A MQ-3 ethanol sensor is mounted on a breadboard which can measure the alcohol concentration by breathing into it. An I2C LCD screen was used to display the results and jumper wires connect all the components to the breadboard.  The implemented system can measure alcohol concentration in the breath with high accuracy. The designed system can be easily extended to sense other gases (e.g. oxygen, carbon monoxide, etc.) as well by equipping the system with other gas sensors.

Automated Beach Cleaner
Authors: Nicolas Cardenas, Christopher Martucci, Kareem Saleh
Poster number: 83

In today’s world of plastic, beaches all over the earth are suffering from litter and waste that inevitably reaches the shore and gets swept into the ocean and seas. Even today, litter such as plastic bags and cigarette butts are still a common sight in even some of the most remote beaches. The world responded to this by creating beach cleaners, which clear beaches at night from the leftover litter by visitors. These however are usually found to be large and expensive, as well as unusable around people for caution purposes. This project exploits the complications with these beach cleaners and presents a beach cleaner that accounts for these challenges. The beach cleaner presented in this project is fairly small in comparison to existing models. A smaller model allows for more dexterous movement and less danger for bystanders. The design of the trash collector is made in a way to effectively separate the litter from the sand with as few electrical components as possible to reduce the overall power consumption. By combining this with supplementary mechanical ingenuity, we will be maximizing efficiency by having less complex approaches. A system of interleaved bands and scoopers would be gathering the litter and retaining it into a storage vessel without any amount of sand going with it. To automatize this machine, we will incorporate an Arduino MEGA microcontroller. This allows the machine to follow a preprogrammed route, while being able to account for certain stimulus, such as sudden movement or an object too big in its route, thanks to the ultrasonic sensors installed in the front and sides of the beach cleaner. In doing so, the sensors keep safe the beach cleaner, as well as small animals, and wandering people.

Design of a Helicopter Rotor Whirl Stand
Authors: Elizabeth Conlon, Chase Briggs, Benjamin Hagan, B. Grant Crawford, Lynn Byers
Poster number: 84

In the fall of 2018, the director of the Helicopter Aeronautics course at Quinnipiac University approached the mechanical engineering students with a request for a helicopter test stand that could be used to measure thrust, torque, RPM, and rotor blade angle of attack produced by a helicopter main rotor system. The rotor whirl stand would be used as a piece of lab equipment for the course to compare theoretical predictions with actual performance.

The School of Engineering at Quinnipiac University formed a student design team made of three mechanical engineering students and a faculty advisor with the course director serving as the client. In response to the client’s request and based on preliminary research as well as customer interviews, the design team developed their solution.

The final design is a modified, remote-controlled, electrically powered, model helicopter mounted on a fabricated stand made of a 3-inch diameter aluminum pipe sitting on a base plate. The upper portion of the stand consists of a smaller PVC section to which torsional strain gages are affixed. Torsional strain gauges, micro load cells, and optic light sensors will be used to measure torque, thrust, and rotor RPM respectively. Rotor blade angle of attack is measured through communication with the rotor servos. A LabView program is used to display the desired measurements as the program is running. The user controls and sets RPM and angle of attack using the LabView digital interface.

This design fulfills the key customer requirement that emerged from the design process. Specifically, the device must produce data that are comparable with results obtained from theoretical calculations modeled in class projects. This design is unique because there are no helicopter rotor whirl stands available for purchase on the market, and there is limited research available about constructing such devices.

Context-Oriented Privacy Protection in WSNs
Authors: Abdelrahman Elleithy, Gianni DaSilva, Vincent Loud, Ana Salazar, Jeff Soto
Poster number: 85

As more devices become connected to the internet and new technologies emerge to connect them, security must keep up to protect data during transmission and at rest. Several instances of security breaches have forced many essential companies to investigate the effectiveness of their security measures. In this paper, we discuss different methodologies for protecting data as it relates to wireless sensor networks (WSNs). Data collected from these sensors range in type from location data of an individual to surveillance for military applications. Because of this privacy is of the utmost concern. We propose a solution that protects the location of the base station and the nodes while transmitting data.

There have been several instances of data breaches within the past few years including Facebook, Equifax, and many others [1, 2]. Implementing security within smaller applications such as wearable devices [3] is often not practical ·with the battery life, memory and CPU limitation, and total time to transfer data as limiting factors [4]. As these devices get smaller and become more widespread, a proper way of protecting the data being transferred is necessary. With WSNs uses in everything from household appliances to military surveillance, this technology needs reliable security before it can be widely accepted.

By implementing a combination of the methods suggested methods in this paper, we believe that WSNs privacy would be significantly protected. The methods introduced are better than traditional methods of privacy protection, as they use fewer resources on hardware that is very limited. By implementing these systematic procedures, we would be keeping a smaller codebase as well as using a minimal amount of resources.

Security in Wireless Sensor Networks
Authors: Abdelrahman Elleithy, Ashley Johnson, Joseph Molloy, Jonathan Yunes, Joseph Puthuparampil
Poster number:86

The use of wireless sensor networks has been increasing rapidly in recent years and use in wide range of applications. A Wireless sensor network is made up of a collection of nodes, and it can only communicate with each other in a limited range of transmission. A node in a sensor network is capable of processing, gathering and interacting with other nodes. Wireless network sensors made it easier for humans to not worry about the monitoring the system without the need for a physical wired connection.  However, security in the wireless sensor network environment has become a hot topic in the IT world and pose many system challenges.

In this paper, we discuss the vulnerabilities of wireless sensor networks, how these vulnerabilities can be exploited by attackers, and the solutions to defend against these attacks. Many routing sensor network practices have been suggested in the literature, but there has not been a successful one that was designed with security. We will recommend the significant problem that is occurring in sensor networks and why it is causing many attackers to do their diligence. Also, we will come up with solutions and defenses to the routing mechanisms in sensor networks and how it will affect it positively.

The problem with many of these proposed routing protocols for wireless sensor networks is that they assume all nodes can be trusted. In addition to this, these protocols rely on nodes inviting all other available nodes as a means of finding the best routing path to a destination. As a result of these two protocol features, the routing mechanisms of the wireless sensor network are vulnerable to attackers in a variety of ways. While many security features have been proposed to remove these vulnerabilities, it is often difficult to directly apply them to sensor networks due to the nature of their design. These attacks on sensor routing mechanisms can be categorized into three groups.

To detect sinkhole attacks, our method of detection focused on determining the percentage of verified packets that reached the base station. Given that the probability of a packet reaching the base station decreased as the number of nodes from the base station increased, we needed to take this into consideration.

We simulated different percentages of dropped packets in the network to take into consideration all situations in the network. As the probability of malicious nodes increased, the chance of detecting the malicious node decreased. Up until a percentage of around 30%, our method proved to be accurate in identifying an intruder.

Animal Monitoring System Based on GRPS Wireless Communication
Authors: Shuangquan Fu, Sihao Lan
Poster number: 87

In today's world, people have been trying to save endangered animals, but the work has been more difficult, because the range of animal activity is uncertain, the physiological status of animals is difficult to monitor. For animal emergencies, managers can not rescue them in time, resulting in the reduction of endangered animals. So endangered animals need an intelligent monitoring system.

The proposed project is a wireless intelligent monitoring system, which includes the monitoring of heart rate, body temperature and GPS position of a wild animal. The system is implemented using Arduino microcontroller, pulse sensor, LM35 temperature sensor, GPS module and GRPS module. Through GRPS communication, heart rate, body temperature and location information are transmitted to a MQTT (Message Queuing Telemetry Transport) Service which stores it to the database. A web application is used to represent the real-time data such as body temperature and heart rate in order to give better representation. If the temperature and heart rate of the animal exceed the normal range, the server sends an email to the guardian, and display the location information on the map through Google API, which can give tracking information to its guardian.

This system realizes remote data transmission and solves the problems of monitoring and tracking endangered animals. It gives guardians enough time to deal with emergencies. And the guardian can know the situation and location of animals in real time. So endangered animals can be protected better.

A Control System for a Small Autonomous Sailing Vessel
Authors: Tobias Ferl
Poster number:88

Autonomous systems are increasingly prevalent in the maritime industry with autopilots, dynamic positioning systems, automated cargo handling, and monitoring systems improving efficiency, reliability, and safety of transportation at sea. The Microtransat Challenge seeks to improve the state of maritime automation through competition.  The goal is to complete a trans-Atlantic crossing with an unmanned, wind-powered vessel up to 2.4 meters in length.  To date, no completely autonomous vessel has finished this challenge.  As a yearlong undergraduate project, we are developing a 1-meter autonomous sailboat for a transatlantic attempt, from New England to Ireland, in the summer of 2019.  While there are many components to this project, our focus is the control system.  The control system for the sailboat requires sensors for wind and location, a solar rechargeable power system, a low-powered microcontroller, and mechanical actuators for sail and rudder control.  In addition to the hardware design, we are also developing custom software for autonomous navigation and control of an experimental wing sail.  Initial testing of a hardware mockup had positive results, however rudder response times were too slow.  We found that the rudder was delayed as it waited for the complex navigation subroutine to execute.  Our solution uses pseudo-threading to mimic parallel processing on a sequential processor, allowing us to run multiple subroutines at the same time.  This spring, we will install the full, improved control system in the sailboat’s hull and perform testing on the water in preparation for an early summer launch.

Flywheel Rotor Design of a Flywheel Energy Storage System for Wind Power Smoothing
Authors: Aditya Ghume
Poster number:89

Power fluctuations of wind turbines may markedly affect power quality in power grids, especially in weak or isolated grids.  Flywheel energy storage systems (FESS) can provide effective energy storage and thus smooth wind power variations. FESS are electromechanical systems that store kinetic energy and regenerate electricity through coupled flywheels and electric machines. For high wind power levels, part of wind power energy is stored in the flywheel and the electric machine works as a motor to accelerate the flywheel. During low power levels, the stored kinetic energy is used to drive the electric machine and regenerate electricity to be delivered to the grid. The design of flywheel rotor needs to consider many factors, such as the stored energy, mass, cost, materials, cross sectional geometry, length, operational speed, etc.

This project designed a low cost flywheel rotor for high speed flywheel energy storage systems. The rotor is composed of a metallic hub and a rim of composite materials. The rotor is subjected to large centrifugal loads at high rotational speed and also its own weight. The hub cross sectional geometry, rim inner and outer diameters, and rim length are designed to satisfy the load condition and optimized to maximize energy per cost. Finite element method is used to predict the stress and deformation distributions in the metallic hub and the composite rim. Design of experiment and Response Surface Methods are used to explore and optimize the design parameters for maximization of energy storage capacity per unit cost.

Development of Ammonia Gas Sensors Printed on Flexible Kapton Substrates
Authors: Mustafa Guvench, Anh Duong
Poster number:90

Over the past decade, printed electronics has become a new modern technology that explores the creation of electronic circuits on flexible substrates. This research is to investigate how printed electronics can be applied to make low-cost and low-power wearable flexible ammonia sensors. PEDOT:PSS and Graphene ink were used to build chemiresistor ammonia sensors on Kapton film. The printed sensors were exposed to ammonia solution in a closed chamber at room temperature for testing. They output the ammonia concentration by reading the percentage voltage increase after being exposed to the gas. A commercial humidity sensor chip was incorporated in the printed circuit to examine the effect of different relative humidity level to the sensor response. Finally, an alert system was designed to sound an alarm as ammonia gas concentration reaches the safety level. The success of this research is a step towards possibility to commercialize lightweight, low-cost, low-power ammonia sensors that can be used in various fields such as toxic gas monitoring and control in laboratory, industry, and food processing.

Design and Construction of Laminar Box to Simulate Liquefaction
Authors: Hadi Kazemiroodsari, William Cashel - Cordo, Dylan Locke,Chris Macdonnald
Poster number: 91

Liquefaction is loss of shear strength in fully saturated sands, when subjected to medium to large shakings events such as earthquake. The loss of shear strength in soil may lead to dramatic failures of structures.  Therefore, it is necessary to teach the basics of liquefaction in all civil engineering programs. The fundamentals of liquefaction are taught in civil engineering courses. It is very common to demonstrate these fundamentals by shaking a rigid box of fully saturated sand, but this demonstration does not represent the real behavior of sand during liquefaction. Sand particles tend to move freely relative to each other, and the shear strength of the sand is a result of the friction between the particles. Demonstration of liquefaction by shaking a rigid box cannot simulate the stress and strain behavior of sand during earthquake, as the rigid box prevents the sand to follow its natural behavior. A laminar box has the potential to provide a simulation, which represents liquefaction at a classroom level better. A laminar box is a box that is made up of multiple two inches laminates stacked together. Each laminate has the ability to move freely in one dimension, and therefore provide the freedom to sand to represents its natural stress-strain behavior. In addition to laminar box a shaking instrument needs to be design and constructed to shake the laminar box to simulate liquefaction. This poster describes the process of design and construction of a relatively small scale laminar box and a shaking table as an undergraduate level.

Smart Cities: Enhancing a Smart Framework for Renewable Energy and Energy Management Systems
Authors: Matheus Lima, Chaimaa Borouay, Anthony Russo
Poster number: 92

Smart cities are known to modernize urban concepts by implementing technology that uses big data to improve quality of life and increase sustainable alternatives for infrastructure management. The international scientific community’s rising concern for environmental issues has created a need for eco-friendly cities. This need attracts the interest of many different parts on the macroeconomic level: government, corporations, researchers, and engineers. This project evaluates what frame could Casablanca afford - as a smart city - for applications in the energetic dimension of sustainable development. Our research aims at exposing the high benefits that a city (Casablanca as a case study) can have while enhancing a smart framework for renewable energy and energy management systems (EMS) applications. This study focuses in increasing energy efficiency for affordable housing market and the team will create a poster summarizing our finds for the ASEE conference. Integration of smart energy infrastructure is a multi-dimensional topic that increases cross collaboration of researches in order to promote scientific advancement.

Arduino-Based Smart Attic Fan System
Authors: Roodler Louis,  Omar ABughori, Tan Pham, Thong Le, Xingguo Xiong
Poster number:93

Research indicates that on a hot summer day with outdoor temperatures around 80◦F, the temperature measured inside an attic could be around 135◦F or more. Extreme heat causes a homeowner’s electric bill for cooling to rise and the shingles of the house to crack and fall off. Such problems make houses unsafe to live in. Due to the cracked shingles, water leaks through the rooftop causing damages like mildew and mold. In this poster, we designed and implemented an Arduino-based smart attic fan system. It uses temperature and humidity sensors to monitor the status inside the attic. If the temperature inside the attic goes too high, or excessive moisture is detected inside the attic, the Arduino controller is going to automatically turn on the attic fan. The built-in camera can take videos inside the attic and use wireless communication to upload it to cloud server. The homeowner can use their smart phones to “see” the status inside the attic remotely without the need to actually climb up into the attic. In case there is a fire, the smoke detector could also sense the situation and send out alarm to homeowner’s smart phone. This can help homeowners to detect rain leakage or other hazardous situation inside the attic and take actions on time to prevent further damage to the house. Our smart attic fan system utilizes Internet-of-Things (IoT) technology to extend the life of every roof, to lessen roof repair cost, and possibly make attics habitable.

Free Convection Heat Transfer in Open System with and without Electrohydrodynamic Enhancement
Authors:  Evan Lundburg, Erik Bardy
Poster number: 94

In the food manufacturing industry, food is often dehydrated to a certain moisture content to increase shelf life and reduce packaging for storage and transportation. Typical food drying processes are usually energy intensive, as they utilize dehumidified air at high velocities to remove moisture by means of forced convection. One method of food dehydration that reduces overall energy consumption compared to forced convective drying is Electrohydrodynamic drying (EHD). This method uses a wire-electrode suspended above the food product supplied with a high voltage. The electron flow through the air creates corona wind that causes a convection air current. This creates a secondary airflow directly above the food product. The primary airflow can therefore be lowered since the primary drying mechanism becomes the secondary airflow. The purpose of this study is to demonstrate the use of a student developed experimental system used to study the effects of EHD convection and compare results with past published studies. This was accomplished by comparing the heat transfer coefficient of four electrode wire configurations with and without EHD enhancement. In the experiment, the heat transfer coefficient with EHD enhancement was expected to improve with increasing voltage. The experiment showed that as voltage increased, the benefit of EHD enhancement would also improve, but at a reduced rate. In addition, a single wire electrode was shown to produce the greatest improvement to heat transfer using EHD when compared to two wire electrodes. Finally, the same EHD enhanced heat transfer coefficient could be achieved by different electrode configurations and voltages. These results are comparable to other studies in EHD enhancement, thus showing that the system created can be used to further studies in EHD convection Electromagnetic-Induction Based

Firefly Simulators for a Real Customer
Authors: Anthony Sibaja, Alec Mulder, Alec Zarzor, Peter R Stupak
Poster number: 95

In the “Authentic Engineering Experience” the goal for the students is to learn by doing.  In January 2018, an engineering team of three students visited their customer - a large local nature-conservancy – to learn about their project to design and fabricate “firefly” simulators. These simulators were to be used at the nature-conservancy’s largest annual public event named the “Firefly Festival”. The customer requested simulators for different species of firefly that mimicked the color, pattern, and timing of “flashing” of each species. A key requirement for the students was that the simulators were to be made from sustainable natural materials and to be safe and durable.

The team searched for environmentally friendly energy options and decided to generate power for the Firefly LEDs using the principle of electromagnetic induction with magnets passing through copper wire coils.

The coils were specifically positioned along the axis of a plastic tube to simulate the pattern and timing of the fireflies’ flashing. The tubes were held inside bamboo tubes and the LEDs were positioned inside at the surface of the bamboo to be visible to the user. The user needed only to rock the simulator up and down to allow the magnet to slide through the coils to create the desired “flashing” effect.  

The team learned valuable lessons about preparing and presenting to customers. The team presented their progress to the customer on two occasions during the semester and practiced constructively acting on genuine critical feedback. A total of three firefly simulators were made for each of the five species requiring considerable hands-on design layout and careful labor for construction and durability assurance.

The team presented their firefly-simulators at the annual “Firefly Festival” to approximately 1,700 people that attended each night of the two-night Festival.

Uniaxial Tensile Tester: A Real Product for a Real Customer
Authors: William Cullen, Alex Christian, Kyle LaPolice, Peter R Stupak
Poster number: 96

A team of three college engineering students participated in an innovative project-based learning course in which they were tasked to design, create, troubleshoot, and deliverer a uniaxial tensile testing machine to a real customer.  The “Customer”, the VP of Finance for the college, requested the machine as part of the capital equipment needed for a new Materials-Testing Laboratory.  The objective of the course was to expose students to industry methods and tools early in their academic programs.

The project began with introducing the team to the customer and hearing of the tensile testing machine requirements for the first time.  Following the meeting, the team conducted a brainstorming session to develop a list of possible technologies for consideration in the design process.  Realizing that they did not understand many of these technologies, the team divided the list and conducted independent research that was presented to the team at the next meeting.  

Having decided on the technologies to use, the team divided the work into three parallel tracks: the machine’s frame, ball-screw mechanism, controller, software for testing material, load-cell for measuring tension/compression, and grips for holding the tested material.  Basic project-management methods were used to define project task responsibility and coordinate parts purchases.  Team leadership was rotated weekly so each team member experienced being leader multiple times throughout the project.

Encountering real and significant hands-on engineering challenges, including technical issues such as integrating the ball-screw controller and load-cell with the control software, and with practical project management issues, such as part delivery time, the team members experienced problems typical of real industry conditions.

The final result was a fully functioning tensile testing machine at a cost of under $6000, now located in the Materials Testing Lab for use by fellow students.

Testbed For Solar Transactive Energy With Implementation of Battery Management System
Authors: Weng Yu, Aidan Krombach, Berthony Lozier
Poster number: 97

The current methods involved with renewable energy and its consumption, storage, and distribution are largely flawed. Due to the losses involved with feeding energy back into the grid, and the closed market operation of the Hierarchical Energy system, renewable power sources are not being used in the most effective way. The creation of microgrids combats this problem through keeping energy production within the microgrid and allowing the possible distribution and selling of this power to be controlled by those producing the power. This idea is called Transactive Energy. The goal of this project is the development of a microgrid testbed to emulate the benefits and possible complications of the microgrid system. A main effort within this project will be to have a photovoltaic system integrated with both a battery and battery management system into the microgrid. This battery will be able to store any excess power while only allowing a miniscule amount to be feedback into the utility system. This will allow for instant selling of excess power during more desirable times. The solar microgrid will also facilitate transactive energy experiments and provide economic factors into the operation of the microgrid.

An Engineering Capstone Project with External Funding and a National Competition: Liquid Fueled Rocket Flight Control System
Authors:  Ying Yu, Eric Sims, David Norris, Xavier Flowers
Poster number: 98

The “Liquid Fueled Rocket Flight Control System” project consists of the design and implementation of a flight control system for a liquid fueled rocket. The control system performs the countdown sequence and automatic engine throttling/cutoff, deploys parachutes, and transmits live telemetry data. It controls the rocket flight according to the FAR-MARS contest and is similar to what might be implemented in a larger suborbital rocket. The goal of the FAR-MARS competition is to encourage college and university students to design and build rockets with previse control. The team that launches their rocket with an apogee closest to 45,000 ft wins the contest. The flight control system is also the team’s senior capstone project and won $1000 NASA CT Space Grant as a student project.

The control system consists of two parts, the power supply system and the actual flight computer. The flight computer consists of a microprocessor responsible for communication to all peripheral electronics including servos, solenoids, sensors, power supply/charging unit, radio downlink, as well as the ground station computer while attached to the umbilical on the launch pad. The power supply system distributes regulated power to the flight computer and the peripherals. The flight computer is a custom PCB that interfaces with multiple subsystems using different communication protocols.

The project is an ideal way for the students to combine their efforts for a national competition with their capstone project while receiving financial support from NASA. The Electrical Engineering students utilized everything they have learned in the classroom in a challenging and meaningful application directly related to NASA’s strategic goals, and developed their critical thinking skills, problem-solving skills, teamwork skills, and project management skills. The FAR-MARS competition guided students to adopt a sound methodology with the right balance between complexity and practicality, manage a feasible timeline and a reasonable budget.

An Interdisciplinary Engineering and Artistic Laser Tribute
Authors: Lauren Wougk, Harald Wougk,Peter Stupak
Poster number: 99

An imagination-driven hands-on undergraduate research project combined a student’s analytical and artistic abilities to create a unique audio-visual tribute to her academic mentors. The goal of the tribute was to project the voices of five mentors, each reading a chosen poem, onto five artistically painted panels designed to creatively depict the personality of each mentor. Starting with simple laser-pointer laser-diode, the student created a circuit to superimpose an audio signal onto the laser beam, causing the light intensity to vary in time. The modulated laser beam was projected onto photovoltaic cells mounted on each of the artistically painted panels. The varying voltage generated by the varying laser beam was amplified and sent to an audio speaker making the voices of the mentors audible. The laser diode was mounted on a servo motor and controlled by a Raspberry Pi that was programmed by the student to rotate the motor to specific angles to target each of the photovoltaic cells in time with the poetic readings. A further goal was that the student’s tribute was to be displayed as a part of the college’s student art show. Each component of the project needed to operate reliably and continuously for hours each day and needed to be operated by members of the visiting public that did not have a technical background. The student was successful in each component of the project and it was installed in the student art gallery for more than two weeks.

Modifying Cable Machines to Create Sustainable Gyms
Authors: Joe Worth, Nick Reinhold, Kelli Therrien, Gilbert Liang, Elaine Lau, Bala Maheswaran
Poster number: 100

In a time where global energy needs are skyrocketing, the quest for independence from finite resources has become an essential goal for engineers. There lies a potential to harness usable energy from nearly every facet of daily life. One such way is to convert the wasted physical energy exerted in common exercise equipment into functional electricity. At its essence, people work out to exert energy, so we developed a modified cable machine to harness what is already expended. Our mechanism transforms the kinetic energy from the concentric phase of a cable row and the gravitational energy of the eccentric phase into electricity via a rack and pinion, gear train, and DC generator. We designed the rack and pinion and gears through SolidWorks and wired a standard DC motor to generate electricity in both directions; the housing is a wood frame with a pulley system designed to emulate the form of standard cable row machines found in most gyms. The resulting energy could be fed into an electrical grid of a gym or home to help offset a portion of the system’s energy consumption. With millions of people working out every day in the United States alone, the introduction of this system has the potential to productively abate energy usage in our everyday lives.

Arduino Control Home Automation And Security Systems
Authors: Travis Osagie, Johnel Rodriguez, Leslie Brown
Poster number:21

The issue of security is very important in our everyday lives. This document presents the background, design and budget for a proposed small security system device that is affordable and portable. You can place it anywhere you want to monitor places as small as a desk or as large as building. One of the biggest reason people do not have security system is because its expensive and some people believe they don’t need it. It is better to be safe than sorry. The objective of this project is to enable users to remotely monitor their home using a cellphone based interface. A key part in this system is that you can monitor your home virtually by being anywhere across the globe. When movement is occurred an email will be automatically sent to your phone alerting the user of activity. To log in to view activity the user must create a unique email and password. When accessed the control unit will relay the commands to a microcontroller that would perform the required action and a return a completion status back to the user. To save energy the program goes into a sleep mode when no occurrence of movement is noticed for an hour or more. Another feature that sets it apart from its competitors is its display of data and energy consumption for the customers who are mindful and interested in knowing of the amount of energy being used. This project is targeted for consumers who wish to monitor their home remotely from their cell phones at affordable prices.

Cloudy? - A Personal Device That Shows Weather Conditions
Authors: Devaughn Staple, Thania Flores, Genesis Paz, Jake Doyle
Poster number: 20

Cloudy? is a helpful project that will show the user the current weather conditions. It is a “cloud” controlled by a programmable circuit board retrieving weather conditions from an open weather application program interface (API). When getting ready for the day the user can know if there is going to be rain in a glance. While Cloudy? functional as a personal weather forecaster, it will also be a trendy, light weight, garnish when not in use. Another feature of the device is using the Blynk application to change the mode from weather to custom, allowing the user to choose between a specific color or random generated lighting effects.

This project is giving the user a quick and effective way of knowing the forecast while being visually pleasing. Cloudy? is simple to user friendly that it is easy for anyone to understand the visual representations of the forecast. It is also very inexpensive due to the materials being of low-cost. Though this project started as a class assignment it is very useful in everyday life.

This project contributes to ASEE by appealing to not just those in the engineering field but also others. It promotes one of the many uses of current and future trends in engineering education adding to the engineering community.

Automatic Projector Screen: No More Lost Remotes
Authors: Joseph Stahl, Ahmed Ali, Joseph Morgan, Haowei Yu
Poster number:19

Many of Buffalo State’s classrooms contain manually operated projector screens.  The goal of this project is to develop a fully automated projector screen that responds both to the projector being turned on and to user voice commands.  The client demanded that current offerings on the market that utilize remote controls are undesirable due to classroom disruptions resulting from the potential loss of remote controls and remote control batteries constantly requiring replacement.  Motorized screens currently available on the market can replace manually retractable screens. The proposed project being developed is instead designed to modify existing projector screens, which would decrease waste.  This is accomplished by developing a series of modules that are designed to work together to control the screen movement.  These modules include a current sensing module, a voice recognition module, and a control module.  The current sensing module detects when the projector is active by measuring the current draw of the projector. It then transmits this information wirelessly to the control module through a RF transmitter.  Likewise, the voice recognition module listens for and decodes user input and then transmits this information to the control module.  For example, a command of “up” would result in the screen moving up. The control module consists of an Arduino microcontroller. The Arduino microcontroller receives and processes information from the current sensor, wireless transmitter, and voice recognition module and translates this information into usable data, which is sent to the motor to appropriately move the screen up or down. The drive is directly coupled to the screen and used a Hall effect sensor to determine the position and direction of the screen movement.  Limit switches are used to prevent the screen from traveling past predetermined limits.  The automated projector design will eliminate distractions and inconveniences currently caused by manually retractable screens.

Deep Reinforcement Gaming Platform : Neuromorphic Chip Design
Authors: Sushant Singh, Joseph Antos, Elizabeth Famodimu
Poster number:18

We propose an innovative product for gaming, a neuromorphic chip using deep reinforcement learning. In the field of Artificial Intelligence, Reinforcement Learning unlike supervised learning, learns via a feedback path. In order to achieve more success, the corresponding action is determined by a reward, which is positive or negative. A positive reward determines the correct action and the probability of repeating that action is high, a negative reward corresponds to an incorrect action to be avoided in future. The system learns via this iterative process of multiple feedbacks.

This gaming technology will revolutionize the way games are played. Instead of categorizing the challenge level of playing a game, this implementation will adjust as per the level of the user or gamer. This will thus enable real time experience, more strategic approach and an enticing excitement to the gamer.

Jet Drive Testing Apparatus
Authors: Matthew Sheehy, Maria-Isabel Carnasciali, PhD
Poster number: 17

Hydrofoil surfboards are commonly used in water sports such as wind surfing and para surfing. They provide many benefits over standard surfboards such as decreased drag and increased maneuverability. One downside of a hydrofoil is the need for a force to move it forward, most of the time wind. To address this problem, an electric propulsion system was designed to mount to the base of the hydrofoil. The propulsion system was designed to be a jet drive; it is made of a ducted, small diameter propeller and is attached directly to the motor shaft. The propeller spins significantly faster than a conventional propeller which can lead to cavitation and large efficiency losses. These aspects make it very hard to understand the behavior of the jet drive without experimental testing. To test the feasibility and improve the efficiency of the propulsion system, a testing apparatus was built. The apparatus monitors the thrust, power and RPM of the system and logs all the data using an Arduino microcontroller. The data is then processed to find values for efficiency and motor torque at various throttle positions. The testing apparatus was built around a 400-gallon tank of water which gives a reasonable amount of space for the energy generated by the system to dissipate.  The results of this testing assisted in developing propulsion system parameters to provide optimal performance.

Commonwealth Ave and University Ave. Traffic Study (Boston)
Authors: Anuja Kamat, Dr. Anuja Kamat, Dr. Tugba Arsava, Ms. Olivia Murphy
Poster number:16

A Traffic Study was conducted to determine the effectiveness of pedestrian signals at the intersection of University Road at Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, MA where the Boston University Academy (BUA – high school) is located. Students at this high school use the cafeteria located across University Avenue. They cross this intersection multiple times a day to attend classes at Boston University. The school and parents were worried about traffic at this intersection and the traffic study was requested. For this study, first traffic counts were conducted from five different points to be able to get traffic data for each approach. Second, collected traffic volumes were compiled and inputted into a microscopic level simulation software, Aimsun version 8.1. Two different scenarios were coded and the performance of each scenario was compared to identify the effectiveness of proposed solution.  As a first scenario existing condition coded and as a second scenario (proposed-alternative) a network with a pedestrian signal control plan coded on University Road. Performance of the model was measured in terms of several measure of effectiveness, such as delay time (sec/mile), mean queue length (vehs), density (vehs/mile) and number of vehicles reaching to destination (vehs). As expected, delay time, density, and mean queue length all increase if a pedestrian signal group is added to the existing signal timing plan, but significant improvement provided in pedestrian safety during school hours. Moreover, Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) Warrants were reviewed and with further research, need for signalization is warranted. Based on simulation results, it was recommended that pretimed or adaptive pedestrian signal should be implemented to this intersection at least for 1 hour during BUA’s school day during their school year. Findings of this research was submitted to BUA and recently a pedestrian traffic light was installed at this intersection.

Balloon/Drone-based Aerial Platforms for Remote  Particulate Matter Pollutant Monitoring
Authors: Soumil Shah, Xingguo Xiong, Jani Pallis
Poster number:18

Air pollution is the world’s leading cause of environmentally related deaths, and results in tremendous environmental, social and economic costs. Particulate matter with diameter of 2.5 microns or less (so called PM2.5) is especially harmful for human health because they can penetrate into the deeper part of the lungs. Monitoring PM pollutants concentration distribution and understanding their diffusion pattern are essential to evaluate their effects on human health and environment. Traditional PM2.5 air pollution monitoring utilizes stationary ground-mounted air pollution sensors to monitor air pollution in certain fixed locations. However, such stationary air pollution sensing lacks flexibility and can only sense air pollution on ground surface. In this research, a balloon/drone based aerial platform for remote particulate matter pollutant monitoring is developed. It can measure PM2.5 air pollution in the air at different altitude and trace the diffusion of air pollutants. The data can be transmitted to ground station via wireless communication, and then uploaded to cloud server. In this way, users can check data online anywhere using computers or smartphones. The proposed aerial platform can also be used for security surveillance, wildlife migration tracking, climate change monitoring, geographical survey and other potential applications.

Mini Baja Data Acquisition System
Authors: John Mayer, Anthony Czapla, Nicholas Fago, Amar Zainelabdin
Poster number:14

Data acquisition systems (DAQ) have become increasingly important to the automotive industry in the design and development of safer and more economically efficient vehicles. DAQs have also found successful application in the motorsport industry, where vital subsystems can be monitored on the vehicle. The need to make data-driven decisions in a competition context extends to the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) Baja competition. The purpose of our final design project for the Electrical Engineering Technology degree program at SUNY Buffalo State is to design and implement an Arduino-based data acquisition system for the SAE Baja vehicle. The inclusion of a DAQ to the SAE Baja vehicle adds another dimension to its design and implementation for competition. Its addition drastically widens the tuning capabilities of the vehicle and increases its performance during competition. The system adds greater understanding of the design characteristics of the Baja vehicle, allowing the mechanical engineering students to see numerical data that corroborates both their theoretical models and design with overall system performance. The DAQ contains sensors that monitor the suspension, clutch and air intake temperature, speed and position, body roll, and engine rpm. Additionally, an onboard data logger is included for collecting and saving data. The Mini Baja Data Acquisition System was evaluated quantitatively on a subsystem level before being placed in the context of the larger system. This testing was completed through the functional testing of each subsystem according to the data it is intended to measure. Once evaluated, each subsystem was integrated into the larger system design. Potential problems in individual sensor subsystems were identified and corrected well in advance of final assembly. At the end of the Final Design Review, a data acquisition system will be fully implemented on the SAE Baja vehicle in time for Spring 2019 competition.

Quality Control and Material Handling System Using Cognex Vision Camera
Authors: Krutarth Sailor, Vaibhav Waste, Sarosh Patel, Bhushan Dharmadhikari
Poster number: 13

Programmable logic controllers have been an integral part of factory automation and industrial process control for decades. These systems perform many functions, providing a variety of analog and digital input and output interfaces, signal processing, data conversion and various communication protocols. The sole purpose is to develop a material inspection and sorting system prototype and also demonstrate the Cognex camera methodology on the Human Machine Interface (HMI). This system can handle a series of metallic and non-metallic objects with the barcode encoded. Mitsubishi controller FX3U-16MR/ES manufactured is the brain of this system. To control the speed of the conveyor variable frequency drive (VFD) is programmed and used. E-Designer-7 software is used to design the screen.  We scanned the barcode on the metallic tin via Cognex vision system. The material of the metallic tin is scanned by the inductive sensor and if the barcode is good and the material of the metallic tin is metal, the metallic tin is considered as good metallic tin and will pass on conveyor till the good part section and if the metallic tin is nonmetal or the barcode is bad, it continues on conveyor till bad part section. The whole operation can be controlled using the HMI. This application can be implemented in various manufacturing industries such as but not limited to packaging industries, automobile industry. The Cognex camera have variety of application in pharmaceutical, electronic industries, who wants to keep a track data and product on the conveyor. The HMI has been designed to read all important data and control and monitor the system.

Asymmetric Piezoelectric Energy Harvester with Multiple Frequency Response
Authors: Jayaraj Prabakaran, Xingguo Xiong
Poster number:12

In this poster, the design and simulation of an asymmetric energy harvester with multiple frequency response is reported. The device has unique asymmetric T-shape beam with two sensing masses. PZT piezoelectric film is deposited on top of the beams and it utilizes piezoelectric effect to harvest energy from surrounding vibration. Due to the three sections of T-shape beams and the two masses, it allows three vibrational modes with different resonant frequencies. Compared to traditional vibrational energy harvester with a single resonant frequency, the proposed device can harvest vibrational energy at three different resonant frequencies. This broadens the frequency range of the device and enhances the energy conversion efficiency. The device is designed and simulated with Finite Element Method (FEM). Simulation results verified the improved frequency response of the proposed energy harvester device.

Project Phoenix: Venus Rover for Data Acquisition
Authors: Alex Picken, Jake Heaton, Abdullah F Redwan , Emerson Mulhern, Hadi Alyami
Poster number:10

Project Phoenix is a research, theoretical reasoning and design emulation project aimed at developing system specification for the construction and operation of a short-mission-life atmospheric probe on the surface of Venus. Numerous atmospheric challenges such as temperature, pressure and other Venusian irregularities pose a myriad of previously un-encountered problems with traditional rover designs. Thus, innovative approaches to rover operation, data acquisition and data transmission are needed. Our team has done the theoretical background analysis to choose the most modern and cutting-edge technologies and advanced materials that would be necessary to design and build such a Venusian rover. We further plan to visit NASA’s Glenn Research Center in Cleveland, Ohio to deepen our understanding of this problem. Our conceptual rover will be mechanical powered by surface winds on Venus. Therefore, the immediate challenge was to design a frame that takes advantage of multidirectional wind inflow to maximize energy generation and storage by winding a main spring. In this conference paper, we intend to present rover modeled in SolidWorks. We will also be showcasing a 3D printed using ABS plastic along with metal/plastic off the shelf parts. It will be a mechanically fully functioning 1/10th scale model of the final product. The reasoning behind 3D printing the model is for visualization and physical emulation of the final design. Project Phoenix will allow RWU engineers to study a piece of space engineering that is normally reserved for larger schools with even larger budgets.

Facial Expression Music Player
Authors: Yousef Mossad, Ivan Rodriguez, Almando Scott, Irfan Saboor, Xingguo Xiong
Poster number: 9

In this project, a Raspberry Pi-based facial expression music player is reported. It uses facial gesture recognition techniques to select songs to be played. This can be used to help autism kids on expressing what they feel and teach them the definition of happiness and sadness and other expressions. The idea of this project came to us after seeing that autism children sometimes want to say so many things but they can't because of the lack of expressing what they want. We developed this project to help them know the real definitions of expressions and how to express their inner feeling to the other side. Depending on the mood the device detects, it will be able to play a certain music that matches with that mood. Our Facial Expression Music Player is equipped with a camera that will be plugged into a Raspberry Pi 3B+. The camera will take a picture of the person’s face standing in front of it after a push button is pressed. Then based on the emotion expressed a corresponding playlist should sound throughout a network of speakers. The proposed system may be used for autism recovery therapy. It may help autism kids to learn how to express their emotions and promote their communication to the external world.

Design and Manufacturing of a Perfusion Simulation Device
Authors: Christian Manetta, Giuseppe Ciaccio, Charles Zhu, Mateu Feliu, B. Grant Crawford, Stefan Christov
Poster number: 8

In the fall of 2018, Quinnipiac University’s Engineering School was tasked with improving a previous design for a perfusion simulation device for Dr. Xxxxx Xxxxx (the client), professor of cardiovascular perfusion and program director of the cardiovascular perfusion program in Quinnipiac University’s School of Health Sciences. The students working on the project were required to interact with the School of Health Sciences to redesign and improve the perfusion simulator by making it compact, user friendly, and effective. They were also tasked with producing detailed operating instructions so that the device can be used by perfusion faculty members and students. The team working on the project was comprised of two mechanical engineering students and two software engineering students. The final design uses linear actuators, a globe valve, a servo, an acrylic piston, a pressure relief valve, electrical components, and a custom software interface to simulate all scenarios set forth by the client. The initial design of the perfusion simulator contained a variety of components which made the device overly complex. This hampered the system’s reliability. The team this year was able to significantly reduce the complexity of the design. In place of the original tank, pump, and three valves are a cylindrical piston and globe valve that control the fluid volume and pressure for the required user scenarios. The final design uses two linear actuators to power the piston. Each actuator can apply up to 200 pounds of force, providing enough force to move the piston at a constant rate. The design also uses a globe valve to further change the pressure in the system. The system software has been upgraded to add more capability to the client. Finally, safety features, including a pressure relief valve and emergency stop, were included.

Energy from Human Movement: Portable Passive Charger
Authors: Dylan Gardner, Abby McMonigal, Timothy Simpson, Chloe Tempest, and Bala Maheswaran
Poster number: 7

There is a new and universal need and desire in the world to create original methods of renewable energy generation. We were tasked with designing a new and innovative process of harnessing energy and creating usable electricity. In this paper we discuss our proof of concept for a new method to utilize wasted energy. We decided to target the wasted energy of human movement and “fidgeting” - moving or acting restlessly or nervously. Our overarching goal was to design and innovate a kinetic portable charger powered by a small generator. To achieve this we decided to use a pendulum inspired by a self-winding watch to cause movement of the generator with random motion of the device. Our self-determined device constraints included a small size (5”x5”x2”), and lightweight (relative to other portable devices). The design is meant to prove that electricity can be generated purely from the movement of the device, similar to the way an automatically winding watch creates potential mechanical energy from movement of the arm. Our pendulum is weighted and the charging circuit fits within the confines of the device’s enclosure. To further prove the concept of creating usable energy, we have added a 5V USB charging port in parallel with the LiPo battery which stores the generated power. Our hope is that this method of kinetic charging could be optimized and made available to charge phones with freely generated electrical energy.

Piezoelectric Keyboard Mat: Repurposing Energy through Piezoelectric Generators
Authors: Jaison Patel, Clara Stewart, Ritvik Rao, Dillon Davies and Bala Maheswaran
Poster number: 6

As today’s world becomes increasingly aware of the advantages of reusable energy, it is becoming very beneficial to look for sources of wasted energy in everyday life. One wasted source of mechanical energy comes from typing. An average person living and working in a country such as the United States might spend multiple hours per day at their computer, and typing is an essential part of this experience. The amount of energy resulting from the force placed on a key press is small, but after hours at a computer, the wasted energy builds to a substantial amount. Our goal is to build a piezoelectric energy harvester attached to a rubber keyboard mat. By connecting piezoelectric sensors in parallel, we will produce voltage from taps on the keyboard. To prove that mechanical energy can be harvested via the mechanical stress on the piezoelectric sensors and then converted into electricity, our circuit will be used to display a live graph of voltage through MATLAB. This allows for the visualization of spikes in the voltage produced each time our keyboard mat is pressed. In the past, piezo elements have been implemented directly into keyboards, but we want to make our solution more practical for a real-world application, as users often want a portable and affordable solution to energy wastage. Our final product will be a user-friendly keyboard mat with the capability to harness energy from typing that would otherwise be wasted.

Pulley Power Producer
Authors: Bala Maheswaran, Gustaf Njei, Cynthia Paula Savage, Erik Sullivan, Morgan Termaat, Bala Maheswaran
Poster number: 5

As fossil fuel emission rates soar, the search for efficient and reliable sources of renewable energy is becoming increasingly crucial to our world’s survival. Electricity production is one of the main contributors to the steep levels of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, responsible for 28.4% of fossil fuel emissions in 2016. As nearly 68% of electricity is generated by burning fossil fuels, it is an important and reasonable conclusion to turn to electricity production as the starting point for reducing our large carbon footprint. Currently, there are several forms of exercise equipment that use human energy to produce electricity, including ellipticals, stationary bicycles, treadmills, and cross trainers. While there are several electricity-producing innovations to cardio machines, there has been much less progress in the innovation of weightlifting and strength-conditioning machines. The Pulley Power Producer builds from foundational engineering concepts such as magnetic induction in order to convert mechanical energy into electrical energy. The pulleys’ rotation results in the rotation of a DC generator, which in turn produces electrical current. The prospect of strength-conditioning machines modified to produce electricity introduces possibilities of fully equipped gyms that power themselves, therefore reducing fossil fuel emissions. The Pulley Power Producer is intended to be attached to machines that require pulleys to function, such as cable machines, although it may also have the potential to be applied to machines that use any sort of rotating mechanism to allow user activity. Our hope for the Pulley Power Producer is that it may be used to innovate strength-conditioning machines with the overall goal of contributing to the reduction of fossil fuel emissions.

Localization & Recognition of the Drowning Alarm System in the Swimming Pool
Authors: Hanbing Liu,  Bo Wen, Mohamed Ben Haj Frej
Poster number: 4

This is a system that uses a wireless sensor network to safeguard swimmers in the swimming pool. Due to the number of deaths from drowning is enormous today, swimming places must strengthen their monitoring to swimming venues. The system will alert lifeguards or guardians if there is a drowning situation or individuals swim in a dangerous area. The system consists of four parts: localization, recognition, transmission and alarming. It is difficult for lifeguards or guardians to monitor and care for swimmers or children at all times. Quite a few situations limit the work of lifeguards. For example, when the swimming pool is extremely wide or the poor is underlit. Life is precious and there is no second chance. The failure of monitoring in the swimming pool is engendered by lifeguard errors primarily. In order to prevent fatigue due to the long-term concentration of lifeguards, resulting in insufficient surveillance, an auxiliary device is given here. Problems are also brought on swimmers instead of lifeguards. Insufficient warm-up and muscle spasms, diving too long hypoxia, unskilled swimming beginners strayed into the deep water, to name only a few. These all pose a threat to the swimmer's life. The system determines the position of each swimmer by sound detection methods and data analysis. Determine whether to drown through the swimmer's water level and its retention time. The drowning person can be quickly positioned subsequently and rescued by asking everyone for help with the alert. Of course, as the number of swimmers rises, so does the workload of the detectors, resulting in incremental energy consumption and error increase. Of course, as the number of swimmers rises, so does the workload of the detectors, resulting in increased energy consumption and increased errors. Here we give a workable design to protect the swimmers ' lives.

Strategic Marketing
Author: Devtosh Dubey
Poster Number: 3

Marketing Strategies implementation is as important as its formulation. One can come up with an extra-ordinary marketing strategy but if one is not able to implement then there is no use. Growing Technology and IT sector is impacting Marketing Strategy everyday. The paper talks about factors like SEO, content marketing and Social media marketing and how it affects the strategic marketing.

Purpose: To get a better understanding of the markets and how marketing teams can use these strategies to focus on the customer needs.

Methodology :Set of rules that strengthens the marketing efforts. Keeping in mind different group of customers and pleasing the needs of customer is big problem these days. Targeting the customers requires strategic marketing. The paper uses grounded theory and review centric research to make marketing strategies more successful.  

Findings :The paper talk about various factors which if studied and understood properly can help in making strategic marketing better.

The Effects of Cement-Clay in Concrete
Author: Anuja Kamat, Hadi Kazemiroodsari,  Ahmed Alrediny,  Brianna L. McMullan,  William J. Cashel-Cordo
Poster Number: 1

While using concrete paste as cement is typical in practice, it has also been proven to have negative effects on the environment. Concrete gives off a significant amount of heat while curing, therefore contributing to the greenhouse effect. For this reason, alternatives for the cement paste in concrete mixes are currently being searched for. One alternative is the use of clay as cement paste, usually referred to as cement-clay. While the use of cement-clay in concrete does drastically reduce strength, its usefulness as a sustainable solution is still viable. For one, clay is a naturally available material which if used in construction would reduce the carbon footprint of projects. This alone is enough reason to investigate its use as cement paste. If the concrete sample created is of a sufficient strength that the reduction in strength caused by cement-clay would still be acceptable for use, the sustainability of the resulting concrete would be significant. The goal of this project is to study the interaction of clay, cement and water and find the optimal percentage of clay and the water/clay ratio which will not compromise strength will be found. The preliminary results suggest that adding the clay to concrete will reduce the compressive as well as tensile strength of concrete.

ARC - A Resource for Cosplay
Author: Melissa Mulcahy, Emily Park
Poster Number: 2

Cosplay is a combination of the words “costume” and “play”, where people, or “cosplayers”, of all ages, genders, races, and more, wear costumes and accessories to embody a specific character from various areas of pop culture. While there are hundreds of online tutorials for sewing patterns and basic prop builds, there are no places to go to for simple, easy to follow instructions or plug-and-play resources for cosplay technology, especially none which allows customization.

Our project aimed to design and implement a web application that cosplayers of all experience levels could use to easily create custom lighting and/or sound applications for their cosplays and receive the code, wire maps, and assembly instructions. The web interface is paired with a custom Arduino library which has premade, highly customizable, features to be used to make costumes “flashy”.

The application allows users of all experience levels to enter their desired animations, colors, speeds, microcontrollers, and lighting components. While currently focused on the Adafruit Microcontrollers (Trinket, Gemma, Flora, etc.) and Neopixel Lights (single LEDs, LED strips, LED Rings,etc...), it has the capacity to scale outward to other brands and components. For the novice cosplayer, the interface can assist with recommend microcontrollers and settings for animations, while the more advanced cosplayer can specify minuit parameters on their own (like speed, number of pixels to illuminate at once, etc.).  

With the customization options and the recommendation features, this project becomes a resource for cosplayers to go to try new things. The output generated by the application is easy to follow and will help cosplayers learn how to assemble their circuits properly as well as remove the overhead of debugging broken code. Therefore, by using this application, cosplayers will become more confident in using circuits and LEDs in their cosplays.

Codec:  A Highly Secure Software Platform that Supports Smart Locks
Authors: Rei Rexha, Isaiah Paige, Marcia Rivera, Wafa Elmannai
Poster number:11

Currently, smart locks focus on connecting the lock to a device, usually cell phones, through Bluetooth or over Wi-Fi. With numerous locks on the market, there are many options for consumers. These locks are not secure and a study showed 12 out of 16 locks were not just vulnerable, however, also broken into, because of their method of communication with other devices. The lower cost locks are more accessible by the public but they can be easily hacked, compromising the user. Furthermore, since this is a product and not a service, these smart locks are limited to certain types of devices. Every brand of smart locks has their own product, with their own security systems, by changing to a service we can expand the options for security by creating a more universal and efficient solution. Thus, we introduce Codec which aims to solve the vulnerability issues associated with smart lock technology.

We propose the development of a system that involves peer to peer communication between two cell phones connected via application to lock and unlock a smart lock. We plan to change the way smart lock technology is offered by making a service instead of a product. By taking an already existing low cost smart lock, we can improve their security by changing the way it interacts with the user from being a product to a service offered to the user. Thus, we can improve the security of smart lock technology and simultaneously keep the price down.

The application collects information from the user which will then send that information to the database/server. From there, the beagle-bone will connect to the server and encrypt the information and push it back to the application and the receiving phone as a secure element. Here it will be decrypted and open the smart lock.  The two mobile devices will communicate with one another and use secure element and encryption to deliver the generated passcode. Communications between both of the phones will be over wifi connected to the application, while the communication to the lock will be through a mix of NFC and HCE technology. Figure 1 illustrates the communication methodology for the deployed system.

The proposed app will serve as a channel for communication between the two mobile devices, developed in android studio, and along with the application will be a hardware secure element, the Beaglebone, which will handle the allocation of random keys to and from the application.  

A Highly Accurate and Reliable Obstacle Detection and Avoidance Framework for Visually/Hearing Impaired
Authors: Wafa Elmannai, Michael Matis, Martin Nowak, Thomas Herz
Poster number: 68

In the United States, there are 1.3 million people who are legally blind1. Many systems exist that aim to improve the safe mobility of visually impaired people, such as the white cane, guide dogs, or current electronic systems. While helpful, the systems have shortcomings in meeting all the needs of avoiding obstacles, navigating to destinations, and being affordable to the user without long-term costs [1].

Our approach aims to build and improve upon current electronic solutions and extend the work of Elmannai and Elleithy titled  “A Highly Accurate and Reliable Data Fusion Framework for Guiding the Visually Impaired”2  [2]. Our proposed solution is to develop a compact, independent, chest-mounted device that will use multiple computer vision algorithms and an ultrasonic distance sensor to detect obstacles and will also provide GPS navigation to a destination for an affordable one-time purchase. From our testing, the combination of multiple computer vision algorithms provides more reliable detection of obstacles, and ultrasound detects obstacles that the algorithms miss. Figure 1 illustrates the prototype and the components of the designed device. Based on our initial testing, the device is able to provide information to the user through haptic feedback by placing vibration motors on the sides and center of the body, as well as through verbal instructions. The side of the body that vibrates will correspond to the obstacle location. The choice of multiple feedback mechanisms allows the device to serve not only the visually impaired, but those who suffer from both visual and auditory impairments. When the device is equipped with GPS navigation, a different vibration pattern will alert the user to make a turn along with verbal instructions to distinguish a turn from obstacle avoidance. Figure 2 shows a functional decomposition of the device.

Nike's Decision to feature Colin Kaepernick in advertisements that makes a good decision or bad
Authors: Swathi Sathaiahgari, Datta Ravella, Peace Okumbor, Srikanth Dabbiru
Poster number:102

Decision analysis refers to a systematic, quantitative and interactive approach to addressing and evaluating important choices confronted by organizations and Nike is one such interesting organization, which from its inception  has believed in taking risks by assessment and evaluation (Bell, 1988). The history stands as a curious preamble to Nike’s decision to feature Colin Kaepernick, the erstwhile quarterback of the San Francisco 49ers, who has not played professional football in nearly two years, as a face of the thirtieth-anniversary “Just Do It” campaign. This is partly about the prerogatives of success: in 1988, Nike was trying to reverse declining sales and was still building its standing in sports beyond track and field. In 2018, though domestic sales in the sports-goods industry have lagged recently, Nike is a globally dominant brand and a supplier of apparel to the same N.F.L. that has rejected Kaepernick since he decided to kneel during the national anthem at the start of a game, to protest injustice and police brutality. Nike’s preëminence likely played a part in the calculations that led the company to feature someone as controversial as Kaepernick in the campaign(Goodwin, Wright, & Phillips, 2004; Kahle, Boush, & Phelps, 2000). Kaepernick has had a contract with the company since 2011, but it was on the verge of expiration when the company crafted an extension. The ad, which Kaepernick tweeted out on Monday, September 3, 2018 shows a tightly framed image of his face, with the caption “Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything.” Kaepernick ignited a national discourse in September 2016 when he began kneeling during the playing of the national anthem before games to protest racism, social inequality and police brutality(Hibbitts, 2018). At first, Kaepernick sat during the anthem. Later, he opted instead to kneel to show more respect for men and women who fight for the country. He left the 49ers after the 2016 season and became a free agent, but executives throughout the N.F.L. considered him radioactive because of his on-field protests, which drew vocal criticism and no team signed him. The Nike deal was announced on September 3, 2018 via a picture of the former on social media, got the viral reaction was split – far from evenly – between those in raptures, and those doing things like setting fire to sneakers they had already paid for (Chadwick & Zipp, 2018).

Authors: Bhumika Shah
Poster number:103

The topic covers different statistical tools that can be used in project management. It analyses the use of statistical tools from project management prospective. Finally, there is a comparison made on the different statistical tools according to their use in project management.

Project Manager construct a unique and simplified model with the motive to get useful results. In so a long way as there is a practical hassle to solve, this model will incorporate positive unknowns, and what is required is to devise the most high-quality technique of acquiring statistics from the records concerning these unknowns.

The Project Management Institute (2004) has identified numerous quality control tools including like cause and effect diagrams, control charts, flowcharts, histogram, Pareto chart, run chart, scatter diagram, statistical sampling, inspection, and defect repair review (PMBOOK)that are helpful in visualization of project aspects, variations and performance.

These quality management tools are helpful in quality control of manufactured products and service-based projects as well. These tools assist the manager during and post project assessment

The tools provided, should satisfy certain stipulations. To get this conclusion, a distinctive set of statistical tools are required.  There are seven magnificent statistically tools that can be used in real project management for total quality management (Reddy, Srinivasu, Rikkula, & Rao, 2009) and can be easily realized using Microsoft excel.

Theme: Faculty Corner

Cross-Disciplinary Lectures on Personal Energy Usage
Authors: Brian Savilonis, James Doyle
Poster number: 66

In a cross-disciplinary experiment, a Mechanical Engineering and a Social Psychology professor provided a guest lecture and assignment in each other’s disciplinary classes. The assignments were different, appropriate to the different levels and student populations, but had the same overarching goal: to encourage students to think about how an alternative disciplinary perspective relates to the environmental problems being studied. Each course had an assignment early in the term asking students to complete and reflect upon a carbon/environmental footprint calculator to represent their personal contribution to environmental impact. Later in the term, each professor delivered a guest lecture in the other's class, followed by a student written reflection. The psychology lecture (to students in “Thermal Fluid Design”) focused on differences in environmental attitudes/goals and behavior, and psychological techniques for helping people attain pro-environmental goals. The engineering lecture (to students in “Environmental Psychology”), focused on an overview of energy systems from an engineering perspective, emphasizing history, magnitudes of energy growth, and energy sources. The presentation challenged many assumptions about the effectiveness of pro-environmental behaviors. Students wrote a reflection piece designed to encourage them to consider how the alternate perspective, engineering or psychology, fit with their understanding of environmental problems.The psychology students demonstrated critical thinking regarding differences between how engineers and psychologists approach environmental problems. Perhaps because the great majority were engineering students, the responses reflected their experiences with engineering prior to the current term.The engineering students felt sustainability and climate change were serious issues. Many students attempted to make small changes in their personal energy usages, but felt they needed a better measure of impact. They felt strongly that government (s) response to the issues would have greater impact than changes by individuals.

Developing curriculum to support engineering college and career awareness and planning for high school students in out-of-school STEM programs
Authors: Elizabeth Waters, Jolie Woodson
Poster number: 67

Out-of-school STEM programs are demonstrated to increase student interest in STEM learning and careers. We explored the impact of teaching college and career decision making tools alongside the engineering skills on students’ interest and self-efficacy in engineering during two programs: a 6 week (4 days per week) Summer STEM Program for NYC high school students and a 3 month STEM Saturday Program (one day per week) for New York City high school students from groups underrepresented in STEM college majors and careers. Students in each of the programs participated in a series of interactive and team-based activities and reflections designed to increase their knowledge of engineering college majors and careers and practice tools for information gathering and decision making about short and long term academic and career goals.  Students completed engineering self-efficacy and attitude surveys at the beginning and the end of the programs and created blogs where they reflected on the college and career workshops.  The analysis combined 1) within-subject and group analysis of pre-post engineering self-efficacy surveys and 2) thematic analysis of student blogs.  The results show positive changes in students’ awareness of careers that use engineering skills, their confidence in using engineering skills and their intent to incorporate engineering as part of their college and career plans.  These results show potential to increase student intent to engage in engineering study and careers through teaching college, career and life planning via group and individual activities and reflections and will be the foundation for developing a college and career action plan curriculum for out-of-school high school engineering programs.

Development of an Introduction to Research Winter Internship Program for Underrepresented Community College STEM Students
Authors: Nick Langhoff, Maryam Khan
Poster number: 68

Since 2000, underrepresented minorities’ (URMs) shares in engineering and physical science degrees have been flat despite a rapid increase in their representation of the overall US population. A primary factor to this disparity is retention of URMs in STEM. One of the top recommendations to address STEM student retention is to engage them in research experiences within the first two years of college. Through a grant from the Department of Education Developing Hispanic Serving Institutions Program (DHSI), Skyline College, a Hispanic-serving community college from Northern California developed the Strengthening Pathways to Success in STEM (SP2S) project, a collaborative multi institution project that addresses barriers to student success using high-impact educational practices that have been shown to enhance interest, increase participation, and improve outcomes for underrepresented minority students in STEM. One of the main components of this project is the STEM Pathways Research Scholars Program: a two-week introduction to research internship experience. Held during the winter break, the program introduces freshmen and rising sophomores to scientific research as well as a variety of topics and skills such as applying for internships; introduction to the research process; university laboratory tours; conducting literature review; the university transfer process for community college students; technical presentation skills; and project-specific topics including experimental methods, instrumentation, data acquisition, and statistical error analysis. The presentation includes a detailed description of the program curriculum, and summarized results from the first year of implementation held this winter 2019. Key findings are shared on program outcomes relating to changes in students’ engagement in their academics, obtaining further internships, transfer preparedness and post-transfer successes, teamwork ability, and sense of self-efficacy.




Event Start Date: April 11, 2019