Engineering students to showcase senior design course innovations for businesses, investors

Senior Capstone Innovation Day Friday, May 2

4/24/2014 - By: Mike Wolterbeek
innovation day College of engineering mechanical engineering students demonstrate their trash compactor at last year’s senior design course expo. This year, all five College of Engineering departments have come together for the Senior Capstone Innovation Day Friday, May 2 at Lawlor Events Center to present their team projects.

Engineering students finish their years of study at the University of Nevada, Reno with a class project where they design solutions for real life challenges, create a product and many times prepare it to be brought to market. More than 50 such projects will be showcased in the Senior Capstone Innovation Day Friday, May 2 at the University.

These senior capstone projects represent innovative engineering products designed by teams of undergraduate students. Innovation Day will feature posters, presentations and demonstrations from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Lawlor Events Center Silver and Blue rooms.

"Our vision is to promote the innovation of our students and faculty, provide them with opportunities with industries and investors, promote awareness to the public about our college and University and advance economic development," Manos Maragakis, dean of the College of Engineering, said.

The program is designed for members of the business community, potential investors, faculty and students. The free, public event will feature research for world-improving projects such as:

• A drug that could be used to treat macular degeneration

• Design of a new drinking water treatment facility to better serve a city's needs

• A robot that gives guided tours

• An irrigation system that automatically regulates to limit overwatering while keeping landscaping irrigated

• A custom designed, electric go-cart for a local teenager with physical disabilities.

A full list of projects and oral presentations schedule is available on the Innovation Day website, http://www.unr.edu/engineering/about/innovation-day.

All five departments within the college: Chemical and Materials; Civil and Environmental; Computer Science and Engineering; Electrical and Biomedical; and Mechanical are participating. While senior engineering students have been producing and promoting their capstone projects for many years, this is the first time that all five engineering departments have joined forces to showcase the senior projects.

This year's event includes 50 projects developed by 205 students. In addition, members of the concrete canoe project will share their work and six projects will be presented from the GK-12 E-Fellowship program, which partners graduate students with local schools to bring energy-related research into K-12 classrooms. In total there will be 52 posters displayed, 36 demonstrations given (10 of them outside), and 30 presentations delivered.

"Innovation Day is an exciting event for us because it exemplifies our work toward a number of the College's strategic goals, including innovation-based economic development," Maragakis said. "In line with our commitment to providing our students a globally competitive education, we are working to offer them the exposure to industry they need to join the workforce ready to contribute. Hands-on design projects like these demonstrate that our students understand the complexities of engineering design problems and can offer solutions that are developed with industry needs in mind."

"We hope that the diversity and significance of the topics, the quality of the projects, and the hard work and dedication of the students will make a great case for what engineering means in today's world and for the exciting contributions made by engineers to society," said event organizers and College of Engineering Assistant Professor Emil Geiger and Professor Sergiu Dascalu.

"We'd like to thank our students, advisors, sponsors, course instructors and program coordinators: Alan Fuchs, Raj Siddarthan, Yantao Shen, Richard Wilder, Kam Leang and Susan Fitzgerald for their help in bringing this event together. There are many other faculty advisors and industry sponsors who worked with our students - we are very grateful to all of them."


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