View Biomedical Engineering Student Posters here. Click the Team Names below for Abstracts and Link to Public Viewing.
Portable IV Pump | The current medical devices used to administer fluids in emergency situations are intravenous therapy, or IV, bags. These IV bags are typically raised above body level and utilize gravitational force to allow the fluid to flow downwards. However, in emergency situations such as combat scenarios, the IV bag is not able to be efficiently elevated, thus rendering the IV bag less effective. Our team is focused on developing a lightweight, transportable, and automatic IV pump which can quickly and consistently deliver IV fluids in any scenario.
CATO Vest | Long QT syndrome (LQTS) is a rare heart disease estimated to affect at least 1 in 3,000 people and result in about 3,000 deaths within the United States each year. The syndrome can lead to tragic, unexpected death, most commonly in children. With LQTS, the heart's electrical system takes too long to recharge, due to abnormal repolarization of the ventricles. This abnormal delay in repolarization leads to a long delay between the depolarization and repolarization of the heart.
Current approaches at diagnosing LQTS involve utilizing halter monitors for recording heartrhythms, after which analysis on the data is performed. There currently is no cure for LQTS. The CATO group seeks to utilize the large surface area provided by a vest to incorporate a multi-lead electrocardiogram (ECG) which will help map the electrical rhythms of the heart. The principles at work involve the acquisition of electrical signals and development of machine learning algorithms to decipher the patient specific QT interval. This will be imperative, as each patient’s heart functions differently, and the electrical activation may be affected by diet, level of activity, environment and/or medications used. This specificity of the patient’s heart limit will determine a threshold in which the algorithm will detect an abnormal heart rhythm. The threshold will be determined based on the patient mapping done under elevated but non-adverse heart arrhythmias. With implantation into a versatile vest, CATO is on the cutting-edge of predicting and alleviating LQTS symptomology.
Ice Creeper and Knee Locking Mechanism Modifications for Prosthetic Leg | Our client, bobsleigh paralympian Sarah Fraizer-Kim, originally requested a device that would increase stability of her prosthetic leg (Ottobock X-3) while standing and/or walking on uneven icy terrains. Her current issue, which is constantly falling while on the track due to instability, occurs by her leg’s locking mechanism automatically disengaging after being inactive for some time, as well as the ice creeper attached to her leg not providing enough traction and her boot being loose on her prosthetic foot. As solutions to both sources of the issue we have designed two different components: a knee stopper and a modified ice-creeper. The knee stopper component works by being inserted onto the rear area of the Ottobock leg; due to its shape being molded to fit perfectly on that area of the leg, there is no room left for the knee area to bend; a metal pin is used to secure the component and avoid it from falling. To decrease its weight, but still have it being able to support around 300+ lbs, the main material for the stopper will be delrin. On the other hand, the modified ice creeper increases stability by providing a greater contact area with the terrain thanks to the spikes located at the bottom, front, and lateral sides of the foot, overall improving the grip the user has. To ensure a tight fit we will also add a supportive structure to the rear area and a belt mechanism around the ankle area; an inner enclosure will increase internal surface area of pylon to stabilize foot and foorwear. This project was constructed around a single client with specific needs; however, the final products were created to fulfill these needs in a generalized manner that could benefit a larger consumer pool.
Anaida Smart Bandage | Wound healing is categorized into four overlapping stages: hemostasis, inflammation, proliferation, and remodeling. Throughout the wound healing process, oxygenation, infection, foreign body invasion, as well as negative variation to blood supply can be disrupted delaying healing. The Anaida Smart Bandage by Dress Up is a device which combats this as it is composed of four main components within the bandage to aid in post-operative wound healing. The four main components of the smart bandage include electrical stimulation, temperature sensing, pH change sensing, and a sericin hydrogel. These components will promote the proliferation and remodeling stages of wound healing, to soothe the area, stimulate cell growth to ultimately aid in scar reduction. This device is chosen for its alternative therapy and non-pharmaceutical properties, efficiency, adaptability, cost effectiveness, safety, functionality and biocompatibility to provide healing for vulnerable patients.
JAKLD Grippe - Cable Grasping Adaptation | Eric Lindsay is a C5 quadriplegic who does not have fine motor function in his fingers and hands, he still retains limited gross motor function in his arms and wrists. He had issued a challenge to have a device created which allows him to pick up a phone charger cord and plug it into the wall. This led to the realization that a broader market for this type of device exists within patients whose pathologies include reduced finger tactility. Examples of disorders that encompass this are Parkinson's disease, arthritis, traumatic brain injury, stroke, spinal injuries, radial nerve damage, and more. Five concepts for the device were developed. These designs were compared and contrasted utilizing a House of Quality and then subsequently narrowed down to a single design after extensive risk and correlation analysis depicted by functional and customer requirements was performed. The chosen device has continued to be modified to fulfill the requirements. The final design utilizes Eric’s wrist movement which is transferred through a slide crank to a sliding plate which is attached to his index and middle finger by a nylon cord. The slide crank is the main mechanism that is translating the wrist actuation into a horizontal tension force on the nylon cord pinching the fingers. These two fingers are pulled onto the thumb which is held in place by a splint. This creates a pinching force of greater than 30 Newtons which allows Eric to pick up and manipulate cords or other small objects.
MIS Lapidus Bone Guide | This minimally invasive surgical bone guide will be used to assist in a Lapidus procedure. Conventional Lapidus procedures require a large incision to generally reorientate the metatarsal bone in 2 planes using the surgeons intuition and experience as the guide. While adequate for most there are some patients that have more complex deformities and requires reorientation in 3 planes. Also, the surgical process leaves a large scar when healed. The device designed offers the surgeon the capability to orientate the metatarsal in 3 planes, remove the empirical nature of conventional Lapidus procedures, and reduce scarring.
Surgical Chest Tube Device | In the United States, thoracic trauma-related deaths make up approximately 35% of deaths.1 Similarly, chest trauma attributed to blunt force accounts for approximately 80% of injuries sustained in motor vehicle collisions.1 In 2018, the thoracic devices' market was documented as $615 million with an expected CAGR of 5% by 2027.2 The most common injuries of thoracic trauma are: Pneumothorax and Hemothorax. These happen when air or fluid enters the pleural space, which then collapses the lung(s). Thus, after analyzing this information, the MAWK team concluded a need for a simple, efficient, compact device capable of detecting negative feedback when inserting a chest tube in a far forward position. This device will then ensure the correct placement has been achieved. Also, this device will limit the number of thoracic trauma injuries and related complications associated with such medical procedures.
Also, customer requirements were considered based on surveys implemented and recorded by actual medical professionals and health care personnel. Therefore ensuring the device achieves the best outcome by decreasing the time of procedures and the efficiency and functionality of the current devices. The market provides the healthcare industry with complex instruments that take valuable time to prepare; this design targets this problem to decrease implementation time. This device is designed to achieve the customer requirements above as well as the technical requirements below. To make this device ideal in the current market, it needs to be inexpensive, easy to use, use a mechanism that detects negative feedback, maintain sterility before use, have smooth edges, and include a one-way valve to limit the damage to the patient. This design will be manufactured into a final prototype to show the functionality visually. The MAWK team will perform the following tests running three trails for each to ensure the device's functionality: Sensor Test, Insertion Force Test, Assembly Test, Insertion of Device Test, Package Drop Test, and other testing. The results obtained from all of these tests will prove the functionality of the device.
In conclusion, this design will help healthcare personnel implement the chest tube device without any complications in procedures for chest tube insertion. MAWK was awarded a budget of $5,000 from the U.S. Air Force to assist in development of this design. With our sponsor's help, the U.S. Air Force, with Dr. Thomas Percival and Amber Mallory, Ph.D. as direct contacts, our project supervisor Laura Gaviria, Ph.D. and our UTSA mentors Teja Guda, Ph.D. and Hugo Giambini Ph.D, the MAWK team believes that this design will be an amelioration to current devices on the market.
Camera Alert System | The potential severity of injury due to accidents highlights a need for an affordable, non-invasive device that can alert fatigued commercial transportation drivers before they fall asleep at the wheel. A safety device that detects fatigue would be considered by our potential customers if it is affordable, low maintenance, compact, and complements existing safety platforms without being too distracting. Our proposed design is the Camera Alert System, which has a multiplexed design, using a python code and learning algorithm run on a Raspberry Pi Zero W that is connected to a camera to track the movement and presence of the pupils to detect symptoms of fatigue. MECM Medical has determined that the use of a camera with machine learning capabilities will provide the most reliability to the driver without compromising comfortability.
The Dual UVC Pods | The current coronavirus pandemic has raised awareness about personal sanitizing habits, and how pathogens can potentially remain on surfaces for several days. These pathogens can lead to nosocomial infections and community spread if no proper form of disinfection is performed. Therefore, there is a need to develop a compact and portable device that can sanitize surfaces autonomously in high traffic areas. The purpose of this device is to avoid the risk of contamination of diseases, infections and pathogens in busy areas. Finding a solution began with a customer survey to identify the most important needs of a sanitizing device. With the feedback and data acquired, four unique solutions were developed and assessed using the House of Quality (HOQ) Assessment to better understand how each solution fits the customers’ requests. After assessing all potential solutions, the final proposed device is a set of two pods named the Dual UVC Pods. The device features four UVC LED bulbs and a motion sensor on the surface of each pod. Each pod itself will be positioned on opposite ends of the surface that needs sanitizing. When motion is detected, the UVC lights activate for 10 seconds after motion is absent. If any motion is detected while the lights are on, they will deactivate to prevent UVC light exposure to humans. A prototype will first be produced. Quality assurance testing, safety testing, and environmental testing protocols will be taken into place to ensure errors and inconsistencies are revealed and fixed for the final working device. With this device being fully autonomous, current disinfecting protocols can be simplified for those staffed in areas of high exposure. Bringing this device to offices, schools, and homes all across the country is REEN Biotech’s response to this COVID-19 crisis.
Sonic Fusion Audiometry Testing for Children with Autistic Spectrum Disorder | According to the CDC, approximately 1 in 54 children are affected by Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD)  and the compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of the ASD market is expected to reach 5.10% by 2025 . Autistic Meltdowns are a symptom of ASD. These are caused by overstimulation of the senses. When reliable audiometric testing information can not be obtained, the child often has to be sedated for an Auditory Brainstem Response (ABR) test. Sedation can involve visits to an ENT for clearance and pre sedation blood work before actually undergoing the procedure. This can be a major financial and time strain on families. This project’s goal is to create a device that allows for standardized Audiometric Testing for children with ASD while avoiding autistic meltdowns by reducing tactile sensory stimulation on the head during audiometry tests in schools. This will be accomplished using the Sonic Fusion sound distribution system.
The main concept of this design is the use of parabolic dish audio reflection transmitters. These discs allow for a focused, unidirectional sound wave to travel in any direction the dish faces. This concept reduces the amount of power required by the speakers, while also reducing audio dispersion that would taint any test results. Another advantage of this parabolic dish shape attached to flex-arms is that it allows the operator/user to adjust the distance and location of the speakers to accommodate any child regardless of height.
Triple P Relief | The Triple P Relief is a drug-free and non-invasive device designed to alleviate the symptoms of a panic attack and to indicate to the patient when it has done so. The “Triple P” portion of the name is inspired by principles of the design including pursed lip breathing, pulse, and panic attacks. There are three primary components to the device. First, a breathing channel which is designed to influence the patient’s CO2 levels in order to alleviate physical symptoms. Second, the audio/visual indicator system which coaches the patient through a breathing regimen tailored to panic attack treatment which in conjunction with the breathing channel will alleviate symptoms of a panic attack. Lastly, the biofeedback component which exists to utilize a biomarker, specifically, the patient’s pulse, as an indication to the patient of panic attack recovery. Remaining components include a rechargeable battery, micro USB charging port, and a power button. The following sections will describe the device and its features in detail.
Production of Pharmaceutical Grade Acetone | Purity is a necessary requirement in producing pharmaceutical grade acetone. The manufacturing process is optimized to ensure that the yield of the product is high, economically feasible, and is more cost-effective to produce than other grades available in the market. Following process safety and environmental protection standards is critical for the operation. This design project studies the process of making Acetone at 99.9% purity using the method of catalytic dehydrogenation of isopropanol (IPA), at a production rate of 30,000 tons per operating year. Modifications applied to the plant including the use of molten salt instead of high pressure steam among others allowed for a reduction of the size of the reactor and its heat duty. Thus leading to a more cost effective plant.
Production of Pharmaceutical Grade Acetone | Design, simulation, and economic analysis of a hydrocarbon chemical plant for the production of pharmaceutical grade acetone.
Catalytic Dehydrogenation of IPA For The Production of Acetone | Acetone can be produced via the dehydrogenation of IPA. The reversible endothermic gas-phase reaction converts IPA to acetone and hydrogen. An azeotropic mixture of IPA and water is combined with an IPA/water recycle stream, vaporized, and fed into a vapor-phase tubular plug flow reactor that is heated by high-temperature molten salt. The reactor will have a packed bed of high-temperature, heterogeneous, metal oxide catalyst with a high forward rate constant that is thermodynamically, and kinetically favored. The reactor effluent is subsequently cooled via two condensers and fed into a phase separator. The phase separator splits the stream into a gas stream, composed mainly of hydrogen and small amounts of acetone, and a liquid stream, composed mainly of acetone and small amounts of IPA. The gas stream is fed to a stripper to recover acetone. The separator’s liquid stream and the stripper’s liquid stream are combined and processed through the first distillation column which results in the production of high-purity 99.9 wt% acetone through the top of the column. A small vapor stream leaving the column reflux drum removes dissolved hydrogen in the column’s feed which decreases acetone losses. The first column’s bottoms are further processed through a second distillation column to produce an azeotropic mixture of IPA and water that can be recycled back into the process via the vaporizer, and high-purity wastewater as bottoms. The wastewater can be treated and recycled to the feed. Team Ace aims to optimize the preliminary base process design for the production of 30,000 tonnes of high-purity pharmaceutical-grade acetone per year.
Production of Pharmaceutical Grade Acetone | The production of pharmaceutical grade acetone through the dehydrogenation of isopropanol is reported herein. Specifically, this involves an exploration of multiple dimensions of the safety of this process, an extensive plant simulation using ASPEN Plus software, and an economic evaluation of the practicality of this plant.
Optimization of an Acetone Production Plant | Our project focused on designing a chemical plant to produce pharmaceutical-grade acetone via the dehydrogenation of isopropyl alcohol. Our design focused on the optimization of such a plant for economic efficiency, and we considered environmental and safety ramifications.
View Civil & Environmental Engineering Student Posters here. Click the Team Names below for Abstracts and Link to Public Viewing.
Redesign of Compass Rose Academy | Compass Rose Academy is a public charter school developed on the south side of San Antonio. In 2019-2020 they were looking to expand their reach by developing another campus in the Port Authority of San Antonio along Billy Mitchell Blvd and Chennault Circle. This is an interesting study because the land is ex-military use and comes with a unique set of challenges. We picked this site as the development was finishing the last stage of construction and will be redesigning the site while referencing pre-construction documents - as if it had not been built yet.
Multi-story Commercial Retail Center | Proposed 'Multi-story Commercial Retail Center' on the corner of Vance Jackson Rd & UTSA Blvd. Will consist of a walking bridge connecting two structures with an emphasis on LEED and LID design elements.
NW San Antonio Rec Center | We are designing a 1-story recreation center in the Northwest area of San Antonio. We chose that specific area due to the high volume of traffic that passes by it and because of the hotel, apartments, neighborhood and other residential buildings that surround it. Residents staying at the hotel or even at the apartments will be able to enjoy the various amenities the recreation center will feature such as basketball courts, group fitness rooms, racquetball rooms, and a general fitness area for weightlifting and cardio.
San Antonio Park Plan | Our team will submit plans for a small public park on a plot of land immediately outside of San Antonio city limits. We will address the existing conditions of the proposed site location, provide a scope of services for the work we believe to be necessary for the project's construction, and abide by all relevant guidelines and regulations. Each member of our group will specialize in a certain area of the civil design process and use their degree experience to deliver a product that meets all necessary requirements.
Ingram and Potranco Mixed-Use Development | This Mixed-use Development building includes a first floor dedicated to retail and 3 upper floors dedicated to residencies. One of the key benefits to this development is that residents will have access to businesses within close proximity of their homes; simply a staircase descent or elevator ride away. A building like this will positively impact the surrounding area by creating economic revenue and providing services to residents--those living within and outside of the development. The entrances and exits will provide easy access to all drivers along Potranco and Ingram road who would desire to stop by to get a haircut or do some light grocery shopping. The Mixed-use Development will also be aesthetically pleasing, with a large open green space that doubles as permeable cover, assisting with rainwater drainage. This development will help the community and will serve as a great new location for people looking for a place to live. This development is also fairly close to the Medical Center in San Antonio and St. Mary’s University. The proposed lot is over 38 acres large, most of which will likely be utilized as green space.
View presentation by Mission City Engineering from 10:00-11:00 am
The Watchtower | The Watchtower is an object detection camera with mounted spotlight designed to track targets and prevent petty thefts. The spotlight will follow the target and give a sense of being watched in order to deter crimes from happening.
LiteHouse | LiteHouse is an automatic home lighting system that uses AI to determine between human and pet in order to save energy and customize user settings.
Hands Free Electrolarynx | The existing electrolarynx device, which accommodates people with speaking disabilities, requires you to hold it up to your neck in order to operate. This project aims to create a hands free version of the electrolarynx that wraps around the neck in order to allow the user to multitask. The new design will also incorporate Bluetooth protocols for communication with modern devices.
ClipCar | The ClipCar is an RC car that is designed to be a mobile video/photo capture device. The ClipCar will be controlled from a web application on the user's phone that will give the user a first person driving experience while they are recording videos or taking photos.
DHA Software and Hardware Fulfilment Portal | DHA has requirements for us to design, develop, and implement a Service Portal that will automate current manual processes to streamline the ordering through delivery process for IT hardware and software used in the DHA hospitals, Military Treatment Facilities and offices
Automatic Aerator | We are planning to construct a robot that uses a GPS module that provides a boundary area for the aerator. The aerator would drive around inside the parameters of the lawn and aerates the soil while traveling. The aerator will aerate in a zig zag path confined by the given boundary.
Romet Electronic Larynx Base Model Redesign | We are working on improving the Romet Electronic Larynx R310 model by designing a charging module, adding insulation to decrease the unwanted noise, and redesigning the body to fit the new components.
Electrolarynx Redesign with Bluetooth Capabilities | Our goal is recreate the model R310 Electrolarynx from Romet Inc. to include bluetooth functionality. Our new and improved model will include the ability for the user to communicate via microphone to a bluetooth speaker to offer a wider array of ways for the user to communicate.
Romet Electrolarynx Necklace | Our product is called the Electrolarynx Necklace. We are sponsored by the company ROMET. This device is created to enhance the quality of life for people who have had the Laryngectomy procedure. With pre-existing hand-held ROMET devices already being sold, we want to improve on these devices by designing one with the same functionality but turning it into a hands-free device.
Soteria's Brace | Soteria's Brace is an electronic/robotic door brace that takes inspiration from mechanical door security bars. It gets its name from the Greek goddess Soteria who is the spirit of safety, deliverance, and preservation from harm. It is activated by a remote control via Bluetooth so that the user can add an extra layer of security to their home's front door. It is made with repurposed Roomba wheel modules that allow it to move towards the door on its own. Once it reaches the door, its arm extends upward to secure the doorknob. Soteria's Brace solves one of the most common issues with similar solutions which is that it requires no physical installation onto one's home. This makes it more accessible to more people, particularly those that cannot modify their front doors in any way. Soteria's Brace's main goal is to provide accessible, reasonably priced, and effective home security.
Autonomous Soft Robotic Solar Tracking System | This project is developing a light weight, manufacture friendly and low-cost solar tracking system that can be conveniently integrated to building facades. The principle of this tracking system is to control the orientation of solar panel by soft pneumatic actuators. The system will also allow user to adjust the solar panel adaptively to maximize energy harvesting.
Lean Latrine | This project is a small device that fits inside a toilet tank. From within the toilet tank, it monitors the water in the tank and helps customers use less water for each flush while also monitoring the flow of water inside a tank with the ability to notify customers that there is an issue with their toilet. The device communicates to customers through a bluetooth app, where they can be notified of any issues, and tell the device how much water to save for each flush.
Rain Sensavior | The Rain Sensavior is a device that is installed within a vehicle's door and automatically operates the window. When it senses rain it closes the window and saves the interior of the vehicle from water damage.
Neumonic | Neumonic is a device that will act as a general hub in your home for all things productivity related, but will prioritize in helping it's users remember important or personal information through an interactive calendar.
IVP Door Lock System | With prevalence of COVID-19 and the threat of future infectious diseases and viruses, the IVP Door Lock System seeks to add a temperature check as a part of a standard Identification Check at the employee entrances to buildings, labs, and offices. The design is two-step: 1. The sensors to identify an employee and take their temperature. 2. The door push bar to receive a success and unlock the door.
Automated Pharmacy Dispenser | An automated pharmacy prescription dispenser. The setup includes a segmented tote where prescriptions will be placed, the robot and a table. There will be a user interface where customers would be able to complete the pick-up process. The system is expected to reduce human contact and speed up the lines in pharmacies like CVS or Walgreens. We are sponsored by PlusOne Robotics
ROMET Electronic Larynx | The Electronic Larynx is a device which allows individuals who have received a Laryngectomy procedure to be able to speak again. Our group has improved the original Electronic Larynx device designed by ROMET by integrating Bluetooth to control the device with a smartphone application we developed, as well as a rechargeable battery with the ability to read battery performance on the application.
Hexapod Cloud App | The goal of this project is to provide a more efficient method of developing orthopedic treatment plans aligning a fractured or misaligned bone back into place. From the beginning to end of treatment, Metalogix Hexapod Software simulates an orthopedic prescription in 3D and tracks patient treatment history within a secure cloud app requiring no download.
The Best Fighter | This is a project created to improve striking skills for combat sports by measuring the strength of the punches with force sensors inside of boxing mask and a body protector, the results will be shown in a digital display and the user will know the mistakes he/she did during the sparring session. This project has no sponsorship.
Wastewater Based Epidemiology Algorithm | This project develops an algorithm which can inform wastewater based epidemiology models of the best sampling sites within a wastewater network. These sampling sites would be locations that can provide the best data clarity when tracing contaminants, with a special focus on diseases, and more particularly COVID. The algorithm will be applicable to multiple networks and should also be adaptable to future diseases.
View Mechanical Engineering Student Posters here. Click the Team Names below for Abstracts and Link to Public Viewing.
Revolving Spool Sub System | To design and fabricate a cage capable of organizing and storing different size spools of wire.
Automated Hydration Device | The objective of this project is to develop an affordable motion sensitive, articulating frame to reposition the mouthpiece of a medical drinking hose. Individuals affected from quadriplegia suffer from muscle spasms. These people rely on fixed position hoses to hydrate. As a result of a muscle spasm, they are frequently shifted out of reach of the hose for periods of time. Current market solutions are not affordable for some individuals as medical aid devices. Automated Assistance Group has designed an affordable articulating frame to that would assist individuals when shifted out of range of their hose as a result from muscle spasms.
Roof Mounted Solar Tracker | Solar panels mounted on stationary rails produce less power when the surface of the panels are not positioned directly facing the sun. Because of this, there are large portions of the day where the panels are operating at a fraction of their intended power output. By adjusting the position of solar panels, power production can be increased by up to 20%. As many roof mounting systems are stationary, the next logical step would be to develop a roof mounted tracking device capable of adjusting the panels throughout the day. This would allow the panels to capture the rays of the sun during the early morning and late afternoon as well as maintaining an ideal orientation throughout the day. The ability to move with the sun will increase the power output of the panel and lead to a more efficient solar powered electrical generation system, increasing power production by 20%. With the ability to track the sun comes several major obstacles and concerns, a few of which are the weight/load on a building’s roof, simple maintenance and overall affordability of the tracking system . To increase the efficiency and produce more power, C3H Student Engineering has developed a Roof Mounted Solar Tracker (RMT). The RMT increases panel efficiency by at least 20%, conforms to International Building Codes which governs weight limits on structures, and has been designed to require little maintenance over its lifetime. To verify these claims, a series of tests were devised to ensure the Roof Mounted Solar Tracker increases panel efficiency and conforms to building weight limitations. C3H Student Engineering has built a prototype to provide a proof of concept to the Texas Sustainable Energy Research Institute and CPS Energy.
PROKEEP Composite Mask | The most accessible masks are disposable, not washable, with high leakage, and more costly for better options. The PROKEEP Composite mask serves to be a reusable, washable, affordable mask that is able to prevent air leakage efficiently while using interchangeable filters for control of breathability. The objective of PROKEEP Composite Mask is to demonstrate an airflow controlling sealant. It is capable of adapting to different face shapes by using composite material as opposed to a silicone layer alone. Using a fog machine, anemometer, a BVM resuscitator and lastly a Pulse Oximeter, data found that our mask was efficient at sealing airflow, which minimizes leakage compared to the off the shelf products which can be bought from local supermarkets. With increased air pressure, the best option for our mask is the attachment of a less dense interchangeable filter to our mask shell for meeting ASTM standards. Data supported the PROKEEP mask seals efficiently along the edges of a face using a shell that attaches to a sealant slit only 3 mm wide, with mask durability and weight found to be dishwasher safe, resistant to high temperatures for short periods of time. Adaptability of the prototype design allowed for simple 2-part detachment and interchangeability of the filter to suit better situations.
The Electro-Mechanical Orthosis | Life-altering injuries can reduce the quality of life for many veterans, leaving them with many difficulties when accomplishing many daily-life tasks. The Helping Hands team has partnered with Quality Life Plus and Alt-Bionics to create an assistive device to assist a quadiplegic veteran grasp and plug in cables. The Electro-Mechanical Orthosis (ELMO) features a dual resin and aluminum 5-bar linkage system, a fitted thermoplastic forearm electrical housing, as well as surface electrodes for electromyography, giving the user the ability to open and close the hand both mechanically and electronically. This device provides the ease of don and doffing, and a gripping ability that allows the user to grasp a variety of objects, and ultimately plug in cables and cords. This device will be verified using the Box and Blocks test, a standardized test of dexterity, as well as a series of other tests to analyze the durability, gripping ability and stability, grasp isotropy, and other device specifications. Depending on the intended user, electromyography may not be the best option, the ELMO provides feasible versatility and EMG sensors can be substituted for other methods of actuation (i.e Bump Switch). The ELMO aims to improve the quality of life and provide a greater sense of independence for its intended user.
Stationary Throttle Intermediate Housing Leak/Functional Tester | The purpose of the project being discussed is to design a test station to ensure the intermediate housing assembly meets operational requirements to guarantee product quality. More specifically, it should ensure the assembly process of the relief valves, which protect the differential pressure sensors from over pressurization, was performed correctly and the components perform as expected. In addition, the test stations must maintain production efficiency and meet all safety standards.
I.C.E. Thermosiphon | Photovoltaic solar panels operate approximately 30 degrees Celsius above the ambient. Efficiency decreases 0.25-0.5% per degree Celsius, which significantly decreases their 15-20% efficiency and 20-25-year lifespan. One technique to mitigate these losses is by thermoregulating PV-panels with a loop thermosiphon system. A liquid-filled evaporator section is attached to the back surface of the panel, and large amounts of heat are absorbed vaporizing the liquid. The vaporized fluid travels to an expansion chamber located above the panel, where it condenses and passively returns to the solar panel via gravity. Unlike water and fan-cooled systems, the I.C.E. Thermosiphon does not require power to thermoregulate the panels. The performance increase from the I.C.E. Thermosiphon has been studied in detail with proof-of-concepts experiments and side-by-side comparison with a control panel. Temperature measurements were taken at points of interest on the front and back side of two panels, one with and one without the thermosiphon. The results showed that the panel with the thermosiphon removed more heat. Surface thermocouple measurements proved that the panel temperature with the thermosiphon was kept lower than the control panel. With a performance increase of 0.38% per degree Celsius, and lifetime increase of 0.5 years per percent efficiency increase, the I.C.E. Thermosiphon resulted in significant net financial gains. Cost, weight, material compatibility, and predicted lifespan of the system limit the design. The results of the prototype testing showed that expansion of the I.C.E. Thermosiphon is warranted to include more thermal pads and conduct optimization research to maximize return on investment.
UV-C Sanitation Station | Grocery stores' shopping carts are some of the most contaminated surfaces people are exposed to on a daily basis. Due to the current pandemic, sanitation of commonly touched surfaces is extremely important in reducing the spread of COVID19. Current methods of sanitation require an extensive amount of time (10 minutes), and exposure to a specific chemical to completely sanitize a surface. The UV-C Sanitation Station (U.S.S.) is a device designed specifically for targeting harmful pathogens (i.e., viruses and bacteria) by using UVC light to successfully deactivate them and nullify the spread of said pathogens. This device will help minimize disinfection time, as well as reduce chemical reactions the solutions currently used may cause to people when exposed. Having a non-toxic, hypoallergenic alternative can make a huge impact on the reduction of COVID19 cases and little by little help everyone go back to life before the pandemic.
Manufacturing Modernization Initiative for Silicone Tear Duct Implant Production | MMISTDIP is a project undertaken by Mech Marvel for the sponsor Katena “Nupak” Medical for the purpose of creating a Tear Duct Implant production station containing an injection, heating, and cooling station. The new design will consist of numerous mechanical and electrical components, finely controlled through the use of two arduinos, stepper drivers, steady state relays, and more. This improved design will increase production by 4, is automized for minimal user handling, and will decrease defect rates to under 10%.
Universal Ac Filter Base | Air conditioning and heating units require bases to house filters that clean the air flowing through the unit. Champion AC primarily uses Aprilaire slotted-style filters; however, customers often want to switch to the more commonly available box-style filters of various thicknesses. Currently, there are no filter bases available that provide housing for both of these kinds and sizes of filters without significant modification. MEIR engineering has designed, built, and is scheduled to test two sizes of universal filter base (UFB) for slotted-style filters as well as box-style filters of various thicknesses. Two prototypes were developed to meet the 2 most common residential HVAC system filter requirements, 16x20 and 20x25 respectively. The Aprilaire slotted-style filters required a track system while the box-style filters required a spring-and-shim system. The combination of these mechanisms were inspired by analyzing existing bases for each type of filter and adapting them to allow for both systems to coexist in UFB. The UFB designs in theory provide the universality for the filter types and thicknesses while meeting the size, load-bearing capacity, performance, pressure drop, sound level, and corrosion resistance specifications set by Champion AC. Extensive testing is scheduled to verify these results in the coming weeks with cooperation by Champion AC. The implementation of the track and spring-and-shim mechanisms into the same filter base will provide housing for the slotted-style filters and the box-style filters of various thicknesses without requiring any modification by the end user. The results from the testing phase will provide further feedback on the design. Because the filter base needs to accept 4 inch box filters, the leaf spring must have at least 4 inches of travel in its compression cycle. This increases the overall spring size and makes for a limiting size factor. Subsequent iterations of these prototypes would enable manufacturability of UFBs at comparable cost to existing bases while providing novel universality.
Soft Robotic Solar Tracking System | The Soft Robotic Solar Tracking System project aimed to develop an efficient façade-based solar tracking system to reduce greenhouse gas emissions generated by building operations. The key principle of this system was to control the orientation of an array of solar panels through the use of soft pneumatic actuators. The solar panel placement was determined by finding the pattern with the optimal energy exposure. The tracking modules were integrated into the array by laying pneumatic lines in the strut channels to actuate all panels simultaneously. Each tracking module possessed the capability to achieve elevation angles of 13°-70° and an azimuth angle range of 23° east - 23° west of the zero position. The maximum shading on the array due to inter-panel shading was 39% in the summer. This means that the tracking panels will be normal to the sun for a longer time period and energy collection will be maximized. This array successfully integrated 12 tracking modules into a single system for increased energy output throughout the entire year compared to a static, vertical solar panel system.
Rowdy Lock | The Rowdy Lock is a mechanical Anti-Theft locking device engineered to tackle the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) statistics of 44,491 (avg.) stolen motorcycles. Said device will easily attach/detach to the shift lever of each motorcycle with a key, deleting the possibility of shifting gears thus deleting the possibility to ride the motorcycle. It will also have a built-in tracking device that if the device is moved or tampered by anything or anyone without the key, will send an alert via SMS type message to the user’s phone. It will be as universal as possible in order to help reduce the NICB yearly average.
Liquid Cooled Thermal Test System | As technology advances, the demand for more powerful, efficient, and discrete power modules increase. Thermal test systems can be used to test equipment for safety and efficiency standards. Rowdy Liquid Cooling is designing a liquid-cooled thermal test system that will be used for several different power modules for TDK-Lambda. The liquid-cooled thermal test system involves the use of an aluminum cold plate that will be used as the heat exchanger. This cold plate will have several mounting holes, enabling the capability to test different models of power modules. The thermal test system must comply with UL standards. According to these standards, the power module must be maintained at 100°C, with a maximum variation of 3°C, for a period of 30 minutes.
Dovetail Fixture | In current CNC machining practices, an abundance of fixturing options and techniques exist across different shops. In a high-mix, low-volume environment, the most used method of clamping complex workpieces, soft jaws, involves additional steps to be created. These steps require the machinist to design, program, and fabricate a fixture solution based on the workpieces’ complex geometries; however, it has no additive value. A solution which reduces these continuous fabrication requirements will prove to be a feasible alternative. It must be able to provide the machinist with the advantages of the soft jaws method such as durability, rigidity, and alignment while avoiding the complexity associated with methods that require electrical systems, hydraulics, and vacuum seals (pneumatic). A completely mechanical solution has been examined, and its approach was to have mechanical components conform to complex workpieces. The proposed fixture solution showed that using a series of locking semi-cylindrical pin banks actively actuated by a spring are capable of conforming to complex workpiece geometries, locking at desired positions, and aligned using a built-in locator. The results showed this design was the most fundamental and simple way to incorporate into a fixturing solution. The proposed fixturing solution is limited by the dimensions of the Kurt Crossover DX-6 vise, the swivel feets’ range of motion, and the workpieces require a dovetail feature. Improvements to the fixturing solution include interchangeable top plates to bypass the dovetail feature limitation, explore other pin head geometries to improve workholding, and the addition of automation to streamline the clamping process.
Portable Intravenous Pump | In combat, a field medic is required to aid wounded soldiers, and oftentimes will have to administer an Intravenous (IV) solution to severely wounded patients. Currently, the field medic would use an IV bag and apply pressure to the bag to force fluid flow, either with his hand or terrain when possible. This inhibits the medic to have free use of their hands and limits their ability to provide proper treatment. The Portable Intravenous Pump (PIVP) provides a solution to the problem of creating hands-free adequate flow through the IV line by attaching to the IV bag and using a pump-motor system to drive fluid through the tubing. Using the pump-motor system, flow is administered at a rate of at least 240 mL/min, providing consistent flow despite area conditions. A control system is included to ensure continuous flow, and will sound an alarm to alert the medic to any flow stoppages. The device is lightweight and portable, weighing (Weight) and small enough to be carried along with a field medic ( size). The device is single-patient use and will stay with the wounded while they are transported to a facility for further care.
The Preventerr | SH Industries creates a fall prevention aid device called the Preventerr. This device will be used for roofing construction workers to prevent fall injuries from occurring while on the job. The team designed two small housing box-structures in order to house an electrical system that will be used in conjunction with the current fall prevention gear. These housings will be used by roofing workers while on the job. Because fall prevention gear can be heavy, each housing will be under 2 pounds for easy transport, storage, and being worn. Roofing construction workers use many non-electrical objects to attach themselves to the roof, so if they are to fall, they are stopped while being attached. The issue is in regard to right before they are about to fall, no warning is being produced if they are not attached to the safety system. While keeping the design simple, the electrical components are compact and no loose wiring will occur. Housing #1, which houses the main electrical system that sends a warning sound to the worker and locates Housing #2. Housing #2 is being worn by the worker and is being tracked; it only contains a battery and ultra-wide band module. In addition to to being tracked, Housing #2 contains a “break away” system design; meaning if the workers were to encounter a fall, the box will easily detach. Using the Preventerr promotes a safer work environment for roofing construction workers.
SV-1 Damper Dyno | This project is a damper dynamometer for racing applications. This machine has the purpose of testing and validation for shocks or “dampers” for race cars. The potential purposes of the project are many-fold. The first is standard car setup. The Force Vs. Velocity graph generated with this machine gives a detailed lay down of how a car’s damper will behave and thus, plays a big part in how the car handles and drives on track. This machine can also be used to calibrate adjustable dampers to a specific car/track/driver. In addition, it can be used to justify the need for a damper to be rebuilt as well as test freshly rebuilt dampers for desired quality.
Lunar Regolith Compactor | Create a lightweight machine that can solidify the ground to its appropriate compactness level which can create a sturdy underlayment for a landing pad and/or pathways in the Artemis Base Camp.
Rocket Motor Test Stand | The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) currently lacks the necessary testing equipment to begin rocket experimentation and exploration. To address the need for hands-on project experience STANDard Engineering has developed a rocket motor test stand. This product serves two functions: as a tool in scientific research and as a teaching opportunity for future engineers. The design must provide modularity and flexibility for testing solid, hybrid, gaseous, or liquid propellant propulsion systems, remote solenoid valve control, pressure and thrust instrumentation, physical space for future propellant tanks, and integration capability for laser-based optical diagnostics. Although each stand configuration will vary requirements, procedures, and precautions the stand must safely be able to withstand up to 1000 lbf of thrust and be portable, modular, and adaptable.. Through the material and part selection process characteristics such as thermal and corrosive resistance, strength, weight, and adaptability were considered. 80/20 1515 aluminum extrusion was examined to fit the stand material requirements necessary for testing safely. Through research and during assembly the electronics components were devised with modularity and variability as a necessity.
The Drum Lifter Sensor | The ability to keep an up to date inventory is desirable for any company that deals with a large volume of products. The trouble with doing so is that a lot of companies either don’t have an effective means of keeping inventory or just have no idea of how much inventory is available. To eliminate this issue we have found that the most effective approach is to automate this process. 1% of error in any process costs a company more than 1% effort to fix which can be really costly on the company depending on the job being completed. A device that can count, weigh, and categorize the inventory just as the operator. The device will be able to automatically detect whether a drum being lifted is full or empty and catalog it on a spreadsheet. The system is limited on the assumption that all drums of the same type have the same approximate dead weight and all drums being categorized are completely full or empty. This device can be used to help management keep up with inventory in real time and analyze the speed in which the operators are handling the material.
The Needle End-Effector Device | The purpose of this project is to design an end effector that is capable of sewing on three-dimensional, curved surfaces with an impenetrable core. The project sponsors at SwRI have provided The REAPERS access to the UR-10e robotic arm and a limited budget. The end effector shall be capable of sewing a minimum of 3 consecutive stitches on a 1.25” diameter pipe with a foam underlay surrounded by canvas. This will help to simulate conditions comparable to a gear shift and steering wheel cover. In order to meet these requirements, the REAPERS have designed the Needle End-Effector Device, also known as the NED.
Solar Powered Water Heater | As environmental pollution becomes more and more serious, renewable energy must be used to reduce environmental pollution. The purpose of this project is to use solar energy to heat water to reduce energy costs. Our solar trough consists of a parabolic reflective panel, an anodized aluminum rod, a pump, a heat exchanger and a holding container for the fluid. The solar trough itself is made out of pvc piping, and is being held up by two triangular stands made out of ABS filament, that collects sunlight in order to function as a natural power generator. Normal solar powered water heaters would cost consumers upwards of thousands of dollars, but ours is affordable to a wider margin of people. We want to ensure that just about anyone who is willing to switch to the alternative of solar heating, can do so without the worry of not being able to afford it. This system is especially suitable for use in summer and sunny places. Electricity rates in the summer tend to go. A great solution to bypass that would be to use our natural resource; the sun. This would not only reduce energy costs but it will enable you to help the environment by running on a renewable source. However, it is also easily affected by the weather. Weather can play a big impact in the way our system operates. Since the water heater is powered by the sun, without the sun you would see reduced efficiency. Nonetheless our solar powered water heater will help anyone reduce energy costs overall. This system is portable and is very suitable for installation on recreational vehicles.
The Nozzle Fan Adapter | Leak detection of HVAC systems has always been a laborious task. Current methods are time-consuming, limited in their reach and sometimes inaccurate. The UTSA Leak Detectors has developed an accessory for refrigerant leak detectors called the Nozzle Fan Attachment (NFA) that improves their inspection sampling area. This allows them to inspect a larger area in a smaller amount of time. The attachment surrounds the sensor tip, creating a current of air that brings airborne refrigerant particles to the sensor for detection. This increases the probability of encountering these particles and knowing the approximate area of the leak. The NFA shape and dimensions were selected with the use of CFD Fluid simulations. This created the design that would provide the most optimal air speed for detection. Given the unconventional shape, the NFA was made with the additive manufacturing process commonly known as 3D printing. Materials and components were considered based on the environmental and work conditions the device would encounter. Parameters such as heat resistance, noise level, and humidity were all accounted for. Polyethylene Terephthalate Glycol Modified (PETG) was selected for the main body due to its heat resistance and chemical stability. Soft thermoplastic polyurethane grips and fasteners were used to enhance the user experience. The device was tested to withstand any potential events it may encounter in everyday use or transportation. The NFA is an attachment that will not only work in conjunction with current leak detection methods but will also enhance the process.
Small Bore Vibration Damper (SBVD) | Small bore cantilevered welds on piping networks can fail due to repeated deformation caused by the vibration of pumps and other machinery connected to the pipe network. Due to the ubiquity of these pipe connections in power plants and refineries, these failures pose a serious risk to environmental and worker safety in addition to the financial implications of lengthy plant downtime. The ultimate aim of this project is to provide a proof of concept for the application of liquid mass dampers in mitigating the amplitude of vibration in smaller structures like pipe networks. In order to address this problem, the team investigated several vibration dampening designs including experimental prototypes as well as currently-available commercial products. The Small Bore Vibration Damper or SBVD is a small-scale liquid mass damper similar to the type used in major construction projects such as skyscrapers and wind turbines. It utilizes the sloshing motion of a dampening fluid contained within several internal chambers to absorb the mechanical energy transmitted through the pipes. The team will test the design’s ability to reduce vibration by completing a vibration intensity test on a dummy pipe and comparing the results with a control.
Moveable Wall Carrier | The moveable wall carrier system serves as a partition between a hallway and bedroom for a house designed by the UTSA Department of Architecture and Construction to help elderly and individuals with physical limitations move easily.
Lightweight Cooling Vest (LCV) | A disease known as anhidrosis is the inability to sweat and thus preventing the body to regulate its temperature. This would pose an issue for anybody, especially for a young teenager whose immune deficiency could be debilitating if exposed to extended high temperatures. The design ZENK decided on to approach this issue is called the Lightweight Cooling Vest (LCV). The LCV is a cooling vest which would allow the user wearing it to cool or lower and maintain a stable body temperature for a four hour timeframe. This system is composed of a refrigeration cycle that will be housed in a school style backpack and a vest will be worn around the abdomen, using fabricated straps to ensure a close fit to the body for a low-profile look and to allow it to be worn under the user's shirt. This system needs to cool the user but also needs to be durable in order to withstand the possible abuse the system could experience as well as high external temperatures. For this, it will be housed inside a two piece carbon fiber shell for durability and its lightweight composition. Research conducted by ZENK suggested that 3D printed brackets made with Nylon-X filament would be the ideal solution for safely securing the components as well as keeping the overall weight down. In order to successfully produce this product, thermoregulation, battery, weight, heat removal and other tests will be performed under potential conditions that the system will endure. The Lightweight Cooling Vest will be portable, durable, and efficient when assisting people with anhidrosis or similar deficiencies.