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Ohio Northern University to hold Engineering Senior Design Showcase

Apr 10, 2015

The Ohio Northern University T.J. Smull College of Engineering will hold its annual Engineering Senior Design Showcase in the McIntosh Ballroom on Tuesday, April 14, at 1:30 p.m. The event is free and open to the public.

Engineering student groups will display their projects using posters and prototypes (or video or photos of their project if it is too large for McIntosh). The designs will be judged by industry representatives after the students give a short presentation and answer any questions from the judges.

Here is a rundown of the projects:

Team Name: TruLes

Description: The objective is to develop a security camera that has wireless power, wireless video transmission and wireless control. If a camera can be created that is truly wireless, then this will significantly improve the level of security the camera provides.

Team Name: LesStress LLC

Description: The objective of this project is to design and prototype a rechargeable device that will record physiological signals and conduct a psychological survey to help individuals monitor their stress levels throughout the day. The physiological information will be sent to a smartphone over Bluetooth and be displayed graphically in a meaningful way. This device will be a wearable shirt with a small computing device attached.

Team Name: ANUBIS – A Natural User Bot Interface System

Description: The Anubis project is a hardware and software challenge. The aim of the project is to allow a person to use their natural motion to drive robotics. The team is currently using an Oculus Rift and Microsoft Kinect to drive our robot. The Rift provides head control and visual feed, while the Kinect provides arm and leg data.

Team Name: I AM AI – Interactive Actor Modeling for Introducing Artificial Intelligence

Description: This project addresses the following challenges: (1) providing an extensive introduction to artificial intelligence (AI), via research and implementation, to a group of senior undergraduate students with no prior experience in the field, (2) incorporating hands-on learning of the highly popular, commercial-level Unreal Engine development framework, and (3) allowing students to gain experience in thinking pedagogically by creating software with educational purposes. The student team is using Unreal Engine to implement a character-driven, non-combat-centric game-like environment populated by multiple AI-based non-player characters (NPCs). The system is being designed so as to be attractive to a varied audience of students within and outside the computer science field.

Team Name: Carillon++ 2

Description: The ONU English Chapel currently operates a computerized carillon system. This project aims to completely implement a new system with newer technology (namely, a Raspberry Pi with touchscreen interface) and a more expansive set of functionality. This includes an entirely new scheduling algorithm, a web application, and the ability to perform live. The goal is ultimately to improve the user experience.

Team: Cooper Tire Linear Friction Machine

Description: The Cooper Tire low-cost, linear friction machine was designed and manufactured to measure the force required to translate a rubber specimen across a solid surface under a constant load. The output force will be used to calculate the steady-state dynamic friction coefficient of the rubber specimen on various surfaces. This design is simpler and less expensive than testing machines currently on the market because its sole purpose is to measure the force needed to translate the rubber specimen.

Team: Supplemental Motorcycle Cornering Lights 

Description: For motorcycles to be street legal, the headlight requires a horizontal cutoff so that oncoming traffic is not blinded. The current headlight provides an adequate amount of light and illuminates potential hazards; however, this design is most suitable when the motorcycle is travelling on a straight road. Since motorcycles are different from automobiles in that motorcycles have to lean as they turn, there is cause for concern due to a lack of visibility at night. When the headlight leans with the motorcycle in a turn, it creates a horizontal cutoff. This causes the inside corner of the road to be completely dark. As the speed and lean angle of the motorcycle increase, this issue only gets worse. This causes the road ahead to be nearly black while the headlight only illuminates everything off to the side of road. Some method of illuminating the road more sufficiently is needed.

Team: Improved Wheelchair

Description: The project idea is credited to Frank Baker, a patient who currently has one leg amputated and most likely will have his other leg amputated. Currently, Baker uses crutches, but will likely be confined to a wheelchair after his other leg is amputated. The goal of this project is to create a wheelchair or to improve an existing wheelchair design to make it easier for the user to function in a standard home. The design should allow simple household tasks to be completed more easily, such as washing the dishes, using the kitchen sink, and using counter space. The final product will allow wheelchair-bound individuals (specifically double leg amputees) to be more independent and make their lives as normal as possible.

Team: Shirley’s Dry Mix Automation

Description: Shirley’s Gourmet Popcorn Company in Bluffton, Ohio, would like to automate their popcorn ingredient mixing process. The current process involves manually measuring and heat-sealing each individual packet. The goal of this project is to provide Shirley’s with a machine that accurately measures and dispenses all the required ingredients into a single package. The machine will need to be programmed to make several recipes and be reprogrammable to allow for new recipes. The improved process will decrease labor costs and increase production speed while maintaining the high quality of the product.

Team: Wind Tunnel Modification

Description: The 18" subsonic wind tunnel in the Thermal Sciences Laboratory at ONU is currently configured to measure various parameters centered on wind turbine design. Since that is not the primary intended use of this wind tunnel, the test section apparatus is being reconfigured to accommodate models of various shapes and to be used to measure the values of normal and axial forces, as well as, moments exerted on the models. This project involves designing and constructing the “sting and balance system” for support of the models as well as the associated data-measurement system.

Team: US Veterans

Description: This project is a collaborative venture between students at Ohio Northern University and the University of Detroit Mercy (UDM). The goal of this project is to develop an assistive-living device for people who use wheelchairs. There are many buildings that have a small number of steps at their entrances that are not wheelchair-accessible. When a person who uses a wheelchair comes to this set of steps, they must then be carried up the stairs or they cannot enter the building. There are very few portable products that can be set up on a staircase with more than two to three steps. The alternative is installing a permanent assistive device (elevator, wall mounted lift, etc.) or a properly graded permanent ramp, both of which can be expensive. ONU students worked with UDM students to develop a portable assistive device that can be used staircases with more than three stairs and costs less than permanent alternatives.

Team: Stable Automation

Description: The objective of this project is to create a system that can sustain animals for weeks at a time without human interaction. The animals can be fed up to three times a day and are provided with a constant water source in each individual pen. Fans are also programmed to turn on when the ambient temperature gets to a certain point to keep the animals cool. The system is run through a programmable logic controller (PLC) and is controlled with a touchscreen panel. Systems that feed and water farm animals are available; however, they are created to run big farms and are very expensive. This system is the first that is geared toward small farms and the first that has been done on a small budget.

Team: Human Powered Vehicle

Description: The purpose of the Human Powered Vehicle Capstone Project is to design, fabricate, and compete with a Human Powered Vehicle (HPV) in ASME’s annual HPV competition and explore the possibility of using HPV’s as an alternative mode of transportation.

Team: Polar Bear Robotics

Description: Each year since 2012, Ohio Northern has faced off against Notre Dame in an eight-vs.-eight robotic football game. The rules are similar to traditional football with some slight modifications to the scoring and game flow. The team is introducing new technology and players this year to advance our capabilities. This year, the rules have been slightly modified to encourage more passing by awarding points for completions of various distances. This has been recognized as a weakness of the ONU team in the past, so the team made it their goal to create a new quarterback and receiver to better address the passing game. These robots will use computer vision to operate semi-autonomously, constantly scanning the field to maintain proper orientation and distance to one another, reducing the human influence on the passing process. The team also redesigned the throwing and catching mechanisms of these robots to increase effectiveness and accuracy while meeting the constraints of size, weight and power. The team hopes to become ambassadors to other universities and encourage them to create teams so that an Intercollegiate Robotic Football League may be formed.

Team Name: ONU Solar Splash

Description: The purpose of this project is to design and build a boat that is powered using solar energy. The boat is being entered into the IEEE Solar Splash competition that takes place in June 2015. The boat design is split into two categories: electrical and mechanical. The electrical design is made up of solar panels that charge a series of batteries. These batteries provide the voltage needed to power the boat’s motor while having the capacity to run for a time that satisfies competition needs. The mechanical design consists of a drivetrain that propels the boat hull through the water as efficiently as possible. The drivetrain must be made to safely and effectively propel the boat in any direction and speed desired and uses power efficiently. The hull must be designed and built in such a manner that allows it to be maneuvered effectively at high speeds and with minimum drag.

Team Name: UAV

Description: The goal of this project is to build a drone to film football practices to lower the cost of obtaining aerial and overhead footage for film room use. The team makes use of 3-D printed components and open-source hardware to keep costs low. The drone will be capable of limited autonomous operation as well as manual flight.