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3BM, 3BM Infrared Paint Curing System
Conrad Bowden, Daniel Tran, Cory Weinberg, and Greg Williams
3BM’s paint curing apparatus system proved that infrared paint curing technology can be used on a flat surface, as well as complex shapes, such as engines. The benefits to utilizing 3BM’s curing system are that it can reduce utility costs, as well as reduce paint curing time by 60%. 3BM’s design can be retrofitted into any existing industrial size paint curing oven with only slight modifications to the height and width of the curing rack.
*Sponsored by Caterpillar.
DART Energy, Modular Wind Turbine Tower
Jose Carreon, Chien-Te Liu, Jesus Lopez, and Mario Rodriguez
The world’s small wind energy market has shown annual growth rates that have ranged between 5% and 14% during the last decade and is expected to grow at a minimum rate of 12% per year. However, despite the increased demand for Small Wind Turbines (SWTs), the industry is facing new challenges, such as the higher cost of small wind relative to solar photovoltaics, the expiration of federal residential renewable energy tax credits, and the general downward trend in state incentive funding levels and programs. Hence, there is a pressing need to make the small wind energy industry to thrive and remain an attractive solution. Before installing a small wind turbine tower, a meteorological tower must be built. We postulated, if a wind turbine tower could be designed to combine both towers into one modular tower system, that could greatly reduce costs. So, we aimed to do just that.
Wave^2, Automated Anodizing Station (AAS)
Ryan Beckmann, Aaron Engler, Johnathan Ledwig, Vincent Perez, and Marvin Rollins
The Automated Anodizing Station is created to make a safe, easy and affordable way to anodize metals. It was made with hobbyists and small business owners in mind to reduce the cost of outsourcing to metal processing manufacturers. The Automated Anodizing Station reduces user interaction with dangerous chemicals and other hazards by using a rail system to move the part from station to station. Anodizing is an electrolytic process used to increase the thickness of the natural oxide layer on the surface of metal parts creating a much stronger and oxidation resistant coating.
*Sponsored by Mauricio Riesco.
Airgate, Battery Cooling System for Electric Performance Vehicle
Daniel Brun, Jose Miranda, Carlos Munoz, and Homero Ramones
Recognizing electric vehicles’ potential to change the way we drive; roadrunner racing joined the national FSAE electric competition in 2018 in order to explore this field. Shortly after, the team tasked the Airgate team with creating a system that would maintain the lithium ion cells at an optimum temperature during racing competition as well as maintain the cells structural integrity in case of a collision. Airgate tackled the problem by studying how much heat each cell produced and then explored a variety of cooling methods. The team sought out the most innovative materials in order to transfer the heat from the cells via convection and to keep the cells protected. Water is snaked throughout the cells in silicone tube in conjunction with a radiator and pump in order to transfer the 7 Watts of heat per cell through the 0.0625-in silicone tube wall. This method proved to keep the cells from retaining heat and at an optimum temperature during discharge. Additionally, lightweight materials such as aluminum and thin steel was used to keep the cells enclosure safe.
*Sponsored by El Taco Grill.
Bexar Aerospace, Soft Suspension System for Ground Vibration Testing of Aircraft
Jeremy Browder, Robert Doris, Eduardo Gamez, Lino Villanueva
Textron Aviation currently uses a soft suspension system to lift aircraft and suspend them in a manner that allows for ground vibrational testing. Their current system lifts aircraft with weights ranging from 20,000 to 40,000 lbs. This system is deemed insufficient by the company and they have tasked us with designing an improved suspension system. Textron has tasked us with designing a new soft suspension system that expands their capabilities. Our newly designed suspension system uses three platforms that an aircraft can be rolled onto. Airbags installed under the three platforms can be inflated to lift the aircraft, allowing the aircraft to move in any direction. The new suspension system expands Textron’s capability of testing to aircraft with weights from 1,750 lbs. to 62,000 lbs. Textron will now be able to perform ground vibration testing on all aircraft in their product line.
*Sponsored by Textron Aviation.
Advanced Innovation Technologies, Paramotor Flight Control Development Platform
Kyle Kinsey, Matthew Pantoja, Tarunjeet Singh, and Ramon Vazquez
The Paramotor Flight Control Development Platform is a remote controlled, highly stable, paramotor flight vehicle has been designed to carry numerous payloads. This device will be sent to Dr. Bhounsule at the University of Chicago where he will use it to develop dynamic control systems that will allow automated flight between GPS waypoints.
Airflow Filtration Systems, Air Filtration Testing Apparatus
Cameron Kent and Wilfred Owusu-Boateng
Most air filters are tested for their efficiency and capacity. This is done by having dust flow through them and weighing the dust it catches and the amount that gets through. Some of the filters being tested though are from the automotive industry and they experience vibration, which isn’t currently incorporated in the tests. That being said, Airflow Filtration Systems was tasked to create a reusable testing apparatus to expand the capabilities of Southwest Research Institute with smaller engine filter materials; while referencing pre-existing testing procedures, including ISO 5011, and adding vibrational anomalies. Our solution was a testing apparatus that would hold the desired testing material in a controlled air tunnel while resting on the client’s Shaker Table. We fabricated and tested our apparatus according to our performance specs and delivered to SwRI a product useable for advanced testing of filter media.
*Sponsored by Southwest Research Institute.
B Team, Hygienic Beauty
Kevin Castillo, Raymond Gomez, Ruby Vargas, and Erick Vazquez
Hygienic Beauty is a fully-automated device capable of washing and drying multiple cosmetic brushes in 15-minutes or less. The development of Hygienic Beauty arose from the need for an alternative solution to the traditional hand washing method of cosmetic brushes. Traditional hand washing is a time consuming process which many cosmetic users go weeks, months, and even years without doing. This not only severely cuts down on the lifespan of cosmetic brushes, which can range anywhere from $5 to $100, but can lead to the development of skin infections and acne on users. To hand wash a single foundation (high bristle density) brush it takes about 1 - 2-minutes and takes about 24 - 36 hours to completely dry and be ready for use. This process can easily become time intensive, considering the average makeup user owns 25 or more brushes. Cosmetic brush cleaning devices on the market, such as the Lilumia, wash up to 12 makeup brushes at a time but delivers poor results and doesn’t include a drying feature. Another popular competitor is StylPro which allows for washing and drying. Stylpro however, can only wash and dry one brush at a time, and must be used with it’s proprietary cleaning solution. In order to suit any and all users needs, Hygienic Beauty is able to function with any liquid brush cleansing solution. Our device is able to wash and dry up to 8 brushes of average length and thickness. During the 15 min cycle the brushes will be washed with soap of the users choosing, rinsed, and dried. To initially wet the brushes, nozzles located inside the machine on the backsplash wall will be activated and then turned off. During the wash process the brushes individually spin on a textured silicone mat that agitates the brushes to remove makeup residue, additionally the platform on which the brushes spin also rotates to increase the level of agitation. Once this cycle is complete the brushes will be rinsed again. After the final rinsing, the brushes are spun at high RPM’s to shake off all of the water until dry.
RAE Systems, Flood Relief Delivery with Drone
Clayton Chandler, Codey Fell, Harrison Kick, and Jonathan Paez
RAE Systems is designing and building a small unmanned aerial vehicle (SUAV) that will deliver a five-pound emergency relief kit towards victims in flood disasters. The drone was designed and built to further enhance the capabilities of first responders to reach out to those who are trapped, cannot move, and those who require aid. The current use of flying a helicopter or driving a boat to reach out to those stranded individuals proves to be very difficult, especially in suburbs or urban areas that are too cluttered with power lines, trees, cars, and other debris. RAE Systems approached this problem by examining other ways these people can receive aid, but in a shorter delivery time. The SUAV can fly up to 60 miles per hour and can deliver enough substance to the people in need of help to last them 2-3 days. The drone utilizes a tilt-wing design which will lift off vertically and then transition to horizontal flight for long distance flights. The benefit of the tilt-wing is to allow the SUAV to precisely deliver a payload in a sustained hover and have the flight range of a fixed wing. This SUAV will deliver many relief kits that will provide warmth, food, and water filters to help those in need during flood disasters who cannot be reached by boat or by helicopter.
Loft Technologies, Pneumatic Trailer Conversion Kit for Low Ground Clearance Vehicles
Nicholas Guardione, Dipan Madhav, and Joshua Ramirez
Trailer ramps and tilt trailers are highly likely to inflict damage to low ground clearance vehicles during loading and unloading. This conversion kit allows a basic trailer to lower to the ground and raise a vehicle for safe loading, unloading and transportation. This design uses features to limit wear on the components and a removeable safety lock to prevent catastrophic failure during transportation. Using a 2”x3” steel tube frame, this system lowers to accommodate a vehicle with a 3.75” ground clearance without causing any damage to the race car or the trailer.
*Sponsored by Air Lift Performance and EnergSys.
Pour Over^2, Automating the "Perfect Pour" with Draft Beer Doctor
Gabriel Arroyo, Will Beard, Nick Lara, and Carlos Quesada
The Draft Beer Doctor is a device designed to autonomously control a draft beer system to reduce waste. On average about 20% of draft beer is wasted in the industry. The leading causes of these losses are due to over pouring and excessive foaming, which can largely be attributed to a bad pour. The device, when prompted by a bartender, moves along a rail system servicing multiple taps, performs the tilting of the glass, and dispenses the perfect beer with no waste. This device allows for the inclusion of the Draft Beer Doctor in a bar without additional TABC licensing and will still give the bartender the normal manual operation capabilities they had before. The Draft Beer Doctor will allow for faster service at the bar, will minimize beer waste, will bring more customers coming to see a beer-pouring robot, and will create happier, more-profiting owners.
*Sponsored by Freetail Brewery.
DARC Industries, Interactive Vending Machine
Rebecca Cano, Dawson Draycott, Chandler Murphy, and Aaron Rios
Red Bull utilizes indirect marketing to promote their products. Indirect marketing is a marketing method which a product is promoted without the use of a person or guide. This project attempts to increase Red Bull’s indirect marketing program through building a machine that distributes Red Bull cans that attracts consumers through interaction. A Pinball style game attracts customers to play which results in drawing attention to Red Bull products. The design process of this project covers multiple mechanical components. The main components include the storage of the Red Bull cans, dispensing mechanic, the electronic components of the gameboard, and user controls. The storage of the cans holds 144 cans with 48 cans per flavor. The dispensing mechanic is designed to isolate a Red Bull can for each flavor to dispense once the game is complete. The electronic components are designed to process digital signals to the dispensing mechanic to isolate each can. The user controls will allow consumers to use and play with the pinball style gameboard to obtain a Red Bull can upon completion. Tests were performed to ensure repeatability of the machine through constant game play and the insulating properties of the wood and spray foam insulation. This machine incorporates mechanical gameplay with a dispensing apparatus for beverage cans to create an interactive vending machine for indirect marketing purposes.
*Sponsored by Red Bull.
Glowing Filament Solutions, CNC Hotwire Machine
Matthew Alvarado, Catherine Carey, Robin Contreras, Alejandro Garza, and Martin Guerrero
Polystyrene, or expanded Styrofoam, is a highly-demanded and versatile material, used in the production of molds for carbon fiber, appliances, air foils, and housing for electronics, to name a few. Cutting this material by hand into a desired shape is a messy, tedious, inaccurate, and time-consuming process. The CNC Hotwire Foam-Cutting Machine is designed to resolve this issue by incorporating computer numerical control to a 5-axis machine, which will use a heated wire as the cutting tool. This allows the user to sculpt complex shapes in an efficient, accurate, and timely manner, while avoiding unnecessary labor.
Vector Innovations, Wire-on-Capstan Tribometer
Tyler Elkins, Carlos Mendoza, Lawrence Narvaez, and JD Selders
The Vector Innovations Wire-on-Capstan Tribometer is the first standardized bench testing rig for measuring friction forces on wire, allowing for the standardized testing of wire coatings and lubricants such as those used in wire drawing processes. The apparatus improved upon previous concepts by allowing for better control of variables in the testing process and introducing the ability to control the temperature at which liquid lubricants are tested.
*Sponsored by Southwest Research Institute.
EMOJ-E, 12,000 PSI Gas-Lift Pressure Vessel
Jorge Flores, Marco Ibanez, Eduardo Lizardo, Oscar Valle Espinosa
One of the methods to extract oil is through gas lifting. This method uses methane or other types of gasses to lower the oil density in order to make it rise to the surface. The biggest issue with gas lifting is valve integrity. Valves can come in many different dimensions and can be manufactured from many different materials. Moreover, they have to resist an average pressure and temperature of 12,000 PSI and 350°F. EMOJ-E worked alongside Southwest Research Institute (SwRI) to design a scaled down prototype pressure vessel that can be used for future reference in gas lift valve testing. The pressure vessel was designed in accordance to ASME codes and API and Equinor standards. Furthermore, hydrostatic and back flow integrity tests were performed to ensure integrity and reliability for future testing references. This project resulted to be a reliable reference for when SwRI decides to test valves at normal oil field conditions.
*Sponsored by Southwest Research Institute.
TECS, TactiVAC: Portable Suction Device for Combat Medics
Tomas Bello, Christopher Carroll, Eduardo Garcia, and Sudeep Jacob
Combat medics provide emergency medical treatment on the battlefield while enduring challenging and chaotic scenarios. Their equipment is highly specialized to reduce their load without inhibiting their life-saving capabilities. Airway blockage is the second leading cause of preventable battlefield death, second to hemorrhagic shock. Clearing the patient’s airway of blood and debris is a top priority for the medic, but current portable suction device technology is not suitable for military applications. The purpose of this project was to reduce the number of preventable battlefield deaths due to airway obstruction. This was achieved by delivering a small, powerful, and lightweight suction device that is capable of being carried inside a combat medic’s backpack. The TactiVAC Portable Suction Device works in all orientations, and is dust, water, and impact-resistant, assuring it iseffective and reliable in the most chaotic battlefield scenarios.
*Sponsored by UTSA Medical Design Innovations Laboratory.
Modernized Systems, Modernized Coolant Testing Rig
Bionka Barryer, Matthew Ermes, and Amanda Underbrink
Modernized Systems has redesigned a coolant testing rig that accommodates ASTM D2809 standards while mimicking common metallurgy that is used in automobiles today.
*Sponsored by Southwest Research Institute.