INNOVATION DAY 2021 | mechanical engineering

Capstone instructor

Daichi Fujioka
Daichi Fujioka

The 2021 Senior Capstone course in mechanical engineering was taught by Daichi Fujioka. To learn more about the mechanical engineering projects, please email Daichi Fujioka.

About the department

If it moves, a mechanical engineer probably had something to do with it. From automobiles, airplanes and space shuttles to robots, artificial limbs and biochips – all moving and transforming our future. Visit the Department of Mechanical Engineering

Explore the projects

  • ME-01 (Adjustable Height Bed Platform for Camper Van Conversions)

    Team: Samuel Craig, Enyioma Opoaraugo, Justin Hiltz, Cooper Wilson, Matthew Montez

    Team ME-1 has tasked itself with creating an adjustable height bed lift system for camper van conversions. The market for such a product is very limited with only highly custom and expensive options or cheap and unsafe options. Team ME-1 is working towards a solution that is less expensive, safer, and more effective than any alternative on the market. Currently the system is being designed for a Mercedes Sprinter Van which is a very common option for camper van conversions, but ideally the system will have universal functionality across other popular options such as the Ford Transit Van and others. Currently the team has come up with 5 different concept designs using a house of quality as well as a morphological chart. The designs have been narrowed down to the top two designs which were decided upon utilizing the evaluation matrix. All concepts were designed heavily around the safety of the user because the user will be in direct contact with the system on a regular basis. In addition to safety, ease of use with high functionality is a focal point of the design, thus making day to day use easier and more efficient.

    ME-01 Lighting Talk

  • ME-02 (Stow-away Bar-ends)

    Team: Marco Bui, Amber Fernandez, Radul Patel, Aaron Snell, Cason Zollars

    Our team is working to make a safer and convenient substitute for mountain biking bar ends. The biggest problem with the current bar end design is the lack of safety when traveling downhill. This safety concern has made bar ends unpopular within the mountain biking community. To fix this problem, our team is working on perfecting a stow-away bar end design that will be safer and user friendly for the rider. The bar end will be stored in the handlebars and can be deployed when riding uphill and quickly stowed away into the handlebars when not needed.

    ME-02 Lighting Talk

  • ME-03 (DF-1-ME-3) (Lucina; Breast Pump for the Modern Day Mother)

    Team: Haley Webbert, Eric Piepmeier, Christian Ramos, Neha Mayes, Michelle Sullivan, Scott Dooley

    For the modern day mother, balancing the needs of providing nourishment for a cherished baby while still being able to accomplish daily necessities is quite arduous. Breast feeding is known for qualities of being time consuming and producing resulting feelings of tenderness in the applied bodily region of the giving mother. Though attempts have been made to improve upon usable breast pumps, more development is needed to optimize the performed process.

    Lucina, acts as the realized bridge to help mothers with breast feeding while still enabling enough energy and time to work on other desired tasks. This is accomplished through a more travel friendly design, cost effectiveness build, and ability to cater to heat and massaging personalizing for lactation speed and comfortability wants.

    The design itself possess: easily connectable collection bottles, control buttons for usage modes and Bluetooth sync, an internal rechargeable battery, pneumatic powered massaging, and a layered comfortable warming surface. For ease of set up, the mother simply needs to slip the breast pump in between the worn bra and the breast at proper orientation.

    In revolution of this design concept, Mothers will be granted more liberation than previously experienced from alternative constructs.

    ME-03 Lighting Talk

  • ME-04 (Food Safe)

    Team: Justin Harris, Rohit Bhatia, Michael Dooley, Austin Schroeder, Brian D'Souza

    For our project we are creating a Food Safe for food delivery services to use. With the current Covid-19 pandemic there has been a rise in food delivery services during the shutdown. Our project proposes creating a box that can lock when the food is put inside and notifies the customer when it has been locked and unlocked. This way the customer knows that their food is safe and has not been tampered with. The box also implements heating and cooling sources to keep the food at a temperature that is suitable for what has been ordered. The end goal is to create a box from a material that can retain the desired temperature to keep the food hot or cold. The goal is to also use a material that is inexpensive to keep costs low for the delivery providers.

    ME-04 Lighting Talk

  • ME-05 (Payload Delivery Drone)

    Team: Adam Flaten, Thomas Beach, Garrett Furlong, Tal Brauner, Eric James

    As traditional retail slowly fades, e-commerce has risen to take its place as much of the world's preferred shopping method. E-commerce allows you to order almost anything you can imagine right to your door with numerous benefits over traditional retail. With the ever growing industrial world, it is becoming increasingly beneficial to streamline the delivery system with modern day technologies. Currently, packages are delivered to homes using delivery trucks, with the driver stopping the truck and delivering each package by hand to the doorstep of each house. This method requiring large trucks or vans to run for long periods of time is expensive  and bad for the environment . In addition, current practice to maximize delivery truck capability involves stacking as much cargo as possible into each unit, which can easily lead to damaged products. We have seen the use of cargo vans for local delivery reach its maximum potential, and yet it still is highly ineffective. Assigning a team of engineers to develop an entirely new method of parcel delivery has strong potential to  improve upon delivery speeds, environmental impacts, and monetary costs.

    ME-05 Lighting Talk

  • ME-06 (Self Heating Driveway)

    Team: Matthew Albanese, Samin Chowdhury, Guillermo Ramirez, Lily Raymond, Paul Remneff

    In colder cities, oftentimes heavy snowfall becomes an obstacle for citizens to overcome. Waking up to inches of snow usually requires the snow to be shoveled or blown off the walkway and driveway. This process can be labor intensive for citizens as well as time consuming. It is necessary to develop a device that makes removing or melting the snow such that the ground is accessible and safe to walk on as there are a multitude of injuries yearly as a result of snow shovelling. If a new device is not designed, the average citizen would have to continue to physically remove the snow themselves.

    ME-06 Lighting Talk

  • ME-07 (CE-04-ME-07) (Off Road Recovery System)

    Team: Spencer Cole, Meridian Donovan, Spencer Green, Henry Rendler, Haley Warneke

    A car getting stuck can situationally range from an inconvenience to an emergency. Currently if a lone vehicle gets stranded in mud, or any other extreme terrain, there are very few options that allow the driver to self recover. Ideally, a system exists which assists the user in freeing a vehicle from extreme terrain, while eliminating the necessity of a tow truck. In reality, a driver that finds themselves stuck will have to call for help. If this circumstance happens out of cell-phone range the driver may have to abandon the stuck vehicle, with the consequences being more dire than littering as the vehicle operator may perish in the extreme environment. To prevent such an emergency, a device is proposed to free an off-road vehicle.

    ME-07 Lighting Talk

  • ME-08 (Automotive Floor Jack)

    Team: Eric Tompkins, Jake Warren, Nick Tibma, Jon King, Ryan Harrity

    In the world of automotive repair, there is a common situation that causes bodily harm and occasionally death; hydraulic jacks without the supplemental support of jack stands. Many "shade tree" mechanics make the poor choice of using hydraulic jacks without stands due to the inconvenience of setting them up. The cause of injury in this situation is the failure of the hydraulics and the resulting crash of the vehicle due to gravity. While this is clearly a poor choice, it happens quite frequently. The goal of this project will be to establish a solution that eliminates this hazard and prevents even the laziest of weekend mechanics from being harmed. Given the regular occurrence of injury due to negligent use of hydraulic jacks the team at Alpha Engineering Solutions will endeavor to design a solution that is easy to use and prevents injury.

    ME-08 Lighting Talk

  • ME-09 (InMotion Systems)

    Team: Jesse Lopez, Robert Hutton, Kurt Alfes, Carolina Marquez, Morgan Lester

    InMotion Systems is developing a traction device for extreme situations where standard snow tires or chains are not effective. With some of the country's roads becoming unnavigable in winter months, crucial infrastructure such as power lines, radio transmitters, and weather stations become unreachable by car or truck. Additionally, many homeowners in these areas face a similar situation. Therefore, the intended users of our traction solution are off-road enthusiasts, emergency responders, and people in remote areas without access to well-maintained roads.

    Most traction devices utilize a treadmill design similar to tank track systems to increase the area of the contact patch and reduce slip, additionally, these systems are expensive, difficult to install, and tend to only fit one specific vehicle. The main focus of our design intent is to greatly improve the systems that are available today and to do so by using parts that can be purchased at wholesale prices and are cheaply available for production.

    For our solution to be effective it must be inexpensive relative to other traction devices, easy to install, cause less damage to the host vehicle, and must be compatible with a wide range of different vehicles all while providing excellent traction in adverse conditions.

    ME-09 Lighting Talk

  • ME-10 (Face Mask Sanitization Case)

    Team: Harrison Griffin, Carlos Ceja, Bryce Stevenson, Shaikh Haider

    Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many public establishments require the use of a face mask to prevent the spread of respiratory viral infections. During normal use, airborne pathogens can come into contact with face masks and survive for considerable time on the surface. This calls for a face mask cleaning solution that can be transported and used while on the go. Just InCase's solution is to design and build a compact folding case that can be used while on the go that disinfects face masks with an ultraviolet germicidal irradiation (UVGI) disinfection method.

    ME-10 Lighting Talk

  • ME-11 (Autonomous Underwater Vehicle)

    Team: Joaquin Rodriguez, Alemayehu Amede, Ethan Austin, Dylan Rusley, Tyler Waite

    Autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs) are becoming a more viable option for exploration and research purposes. Though very few of these AUV's are capable of recharging automatically/having an adequate power source, self-upload of data collected, and navigating the environment well without the need of some minor assistance. Without the ability to self-recharge or upload data, the effectiveness and efficiency of the AUV are reduced significantly; The same applies to not having an adequate power source and proper environmental navigation. As a result, the team will create an AUV that will be capable of all these features.

    ME-11 Lighting Talk

  • ME-12 (Automated Environmental Sensing Watering System (AWESS))

    Team: Brandon Hager, Jack Froelich, Jason Woster, Radislov Shitsov, Ethan Chinowsky

    Whether it comes to farmers, greenhouse owners, or the average plant collector, knowing how much and how often to water can be very difficult. Many people have issues keeping plants alive and this can be due to many different reasons. There are many different factors that can affect a plant such as soil moisture level, how often it needs watered, the weather, and light exposure levels. If there was a product that could not only water plants independently, but also account for all of these different factors to make the best decision, growing plants would become a much easier task. This product should be adaptable for any lifestyle and for any type of plant. Ease of use should be considered so that anyone from the experienced farmer to the average plant collector can use this product.

    ME-12 Lighting Talk

  • ME-13 (Off-Road Stabilizer)

    Team: Gavin Broad, Matthew Ruiz, Joel Leslie, Keegan Willis, Brooks Karlik

    External Advisor: Jon Whipple - Sunnyside Offroad

    The goal for our team, ME-13, is to create a device that improves the handling characteristics between a vehicle and trailer in a off-road setting. Many trailers used off-road do not have suspension that is as capable as the towing vehicle resulting in a rougher ride quality and slower travel speed. Our project aims to reduce those limitations. At this point our team has completed the background research and concept generation phases. The background research showed the closest product to our goal is a sway bar designed for heavy trailers on paved roads. Our concept generation has given us two designs to further analyze. The first utilizes a torsional spring set up to control the roll of a trailer. The second design features a spring and damper system to control roll and pitch of a trailer. By the end of the semester, our team will take these two designs for further evaluation ultimately selecting one of the designs to be ready for a prototype.

    ME-13 Lighting Talk

  • ME-14 (Formula SAE Aero Package)

    Team: Everett Brady, Mason Kaufman, Charlie Cowen, John Barwig, John Martinez

    Our problem statement is as follows: Zoom Dogs has been contracted by the UNR Formula SAE team to design and develop an aero package for their 2022 competition vehicle. Formula SAE teams without aero packages struggle to be competitive due to increased drag and reduced cornering stability.

    Through communication with the UNR formula SAE team and research of the competition, ZoomDogs has created a list of specifications needed for the aero package. We also determined the essential functions of the aero package, some of the most important functions being: reduce drag, increase downforce, and facilitate radiator operation. We brainstormed and documented multiple ways of carrying out these functions.  We then took the CAD model of the frame provided by the UNR Formula SAE team and created five concept models of aero packages that would meet the specifications we had created. Lastly, we compared all five models and narrowed them down to our two best designs. From here, we will run computational fluid dynamic analysis, structural and material analysis, and execute other computation to refine our designs into cohesive systems which meet customer requirements and improve overall performance.

    ME-14 Lighting Talk

  • ME-15 (CM-2-ME-15) (Power Dense Actuator)

    Team: Joseph Hill, Carson Loosbrock, Connor Larson, Francis Budu-Manuel, Grant Sandwina

    Our group is developing an actuator that would be well suited for use in active prosthetics and orthotics.  The actuator is lightweight, powerful, and efficient.  This actuator will allow the user of a prosthetic or orthotic device to perform more fluid and athletic movements than what is possible with traditional devices.  Our solution incorporates the selective recruitment of McKibben Muscles to provide strong, fast, and controllable motion.  The technology used in our actuator has been prototyped and is patent-pending.

    ME-15 Lighting Talk

  • ME-16 (TC-05-ME-16) (Automated Hand Sanitation)

    Team: Ryan Steele, TJ Harkrader, Reuel Baluyut, Diego Saldana, Anthony Politz

    This device is designed for industries in which hand washing is a requirement for the workplace. In most industries a standard hand wash consists of a predetermined process whether it be technique or time which is always operator dependent. This means that there is a large deviation between washing standards per operator, which can lead to poor sanitation. This device will change the game by automating that standard of wash into an automated process that will lower the chances of operator error. This device will use a low flow system to reduce the water use, be energy efficient, while increasing the standard sanitation process. At the end of each wash, a drying cycle will begin and the entire washing process will be completed by one machine. Before the next washing cycle, a sanitation cycle will begin to disinfect the machine using a sanitation material along with UV-light.

    ME-16 Lighting Talk

  • ME-17 (Vaccine Transportation Device)

    Team: Jacob Leyman, Robert Goold, Tom Kotowski, Garrett Oberdin, Miguel Garcia

    External Advisors: Sam Douglass and David Bergeron

    The team is developing a vaccine transportation device that can be utilized to transport vaccines to remote areas, or locations with limited infrastructure. The device will have a battery pack to power the refrigerator and can attach to a vehicle, or be carried by a single person.

    ME-17 Lighting Talk

  • ME-18 (Altruistic Designs Action Winch)

    Team: James Godbey, Brett Ahlers, Nitanshu Parashar, Josh Frey

    Altruistic Designs plans to design an action sports winch with applications in a variety of outdoor activities. A wake/snowboard winch is used to pull the rider across the desired medium where traditional vehicles have limited access due to terrain or other reasons. Currently, wakeboarding requires a wakeboard boat which is generally priced in the $100,000 range and snowboarding requires a chair lift system that is usually inaccessible at small scales. Similar products are prohibitively expensive and often come as a DIY kit which isn't always accessible to every customer.  Our winch aims to change this. The focus of the team is to design and construct an affordable, functional, and lightweight action winch to be used for wakeboarding, snowboarding, downhill mountain biking, and practically anything else that the customer can throw at it.

    ME-18 Lighting Talk

  • ME-19 (Vehicle Recovery System)

    Team: Daniel Kalderon, Duncan Wilmot, Court Diesner, Kason Francis, Connor Marshall

    If you are in a situation where your traction is hindered to the point where you need additional assistance and using a winch or having another vehicle pull you out is not an option, this is where a vehicle recovery system would be needed. This design has the purpose of being safe, simple, affordable, and most importantly efficient which will help you and your vehicle out of the situation that you are in and continue your off roading adventure. The vehicle recovery system will be able to perform in various forms of terrain such as sand, mud, snow, and slush. With the possibility of different sizes, it does not matter what type of vehicle you have, this vehicle recovery system will have the ability to guide your car out of sticky situations.

    ME-19 Lighting Talk

  • ME-20 (Automatic Glasses Cleaner)

    Team: Jason Fox, Daniel Gollery, Vincent LaFe, Nikolaas Yu, Kyle Horne

    A new, safe cleaning solution for glasses lenses.

    ME-20 Lighting Talk

  • ME-21 (Quick Cleaning)

    Team: Brandon Garcia Nunez, Isaac Chiu, Laura Lum, Jeffrey Segelstrom, Wesley Tavares

    Society is driven by interaction with the people and the environment around us. Ideally, convenient disinfectant would be used to quickly and effectively clean personal items, protecting their owners and the environment. Currently the process for cleaning essential everyday items such as a wallet, keys, or phone  is time consuming because there is no universal cleaning solution for such items. Without the safety of clean items, personal health and the environment are compromised. To address the problem of wasting time and eradicate unnecessary risk, a unique and commercial system could be used to aid in a more efficient and convenient method to disinfect personal items without producing external waste.

    ME-21 Lighting Talk

  • ME-22 (Automated Electric Vehicle Charger)

    Team: Adrian Ortiz, Kyle Schmitz, Alex Spears, John Kupchanko, Jake Harrison

    Our team will be designing an automated electric vehicle charger that can be adapted for residential and commercial use. This charger would detect and communicate with the electric vehicle as well as accommodate power settings for different types of electric vehicles in the market. Our design would also allow for a fluid, safer, and more possible charging process for home use as well as a touchless environment for public use as the driver would not be required to exit their vehicle in either instance.

    Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and necessary restrictions, our team will be unable to fully create a prototype. However, our team is adamant to create a simulation of the machine's operation in a home environment.

    ME-22 Lighting Talk

  • ME-23 (DF-2-ME-23) (Wildfire Assistant Robot)

    Team: Ethan Slater, Brent Gray, Joshua Suty, Yoseph Hobe, Andre Skeete, Anthony Ko, Benjamin Ly

    As wildfires become more prevalent, the risk of injury or loss of life for firefighters is increasing as well. There is a need for a firefighting robot to work alongside firefighters, especially where human firefighters can't easily reach, or where heavy machinery cannot be used. Wildfire fighting ground crew work generally consists of cutting trees and brush in order to contain the fires and create fire lines. The robotic system will be able to assist in these duties as well as haul gear for firefighters. The system will reduce the risk of both short and long term injuries posed to the firemen by clearing brush and trees in extremely hot and/or smokey areas.

    ME-23 Lighting Talk