This week I wanted to share with everyone my favorite class of the semester: Senior Design Lab. This is sort of the capstone class for mechanical engineers (and other engineers as well). It incorporates all of the knowledge you’ve gained over the past 6 semesters and puts them to use in an original idea that you have one semester to carry out. Projects range from building dynomometers for SC Racing to creating a scaled down version of Elon Musk’s “Hyperloop”.
Our project deals with shockwaves, since I have access to the shockwave labs through my research on biomimicry. Our goal is to use LED’s (like the ones in your phone’s flash) as pressure transducers for shockwave applications. There has been a little research in the field so far, but essentially the idea is to be able to accurately measure pressure differentials with a very cheap device used in a novel way. I’m excited about the prospects of the project, and so far, we’re off to a great start!
The other classes I’m taking this semester include: Materials Science, Computational Methods for Engineers, Linear Control Systems (I’ve got a midterm in that class tomorrow! Wish me luck!), and I’m using my research in biomimetics as a replacement for a core elective.
This past week, most of my time has been taken up in the lab for my biomimetics research, since the PhD student I work for is traveling to Washington State tomorrow to take our mechanical system up to a professor who will do preliminary testing on REAL brain cells (grown in a lab). It’s been a stressful week, but I’m sure it will all be a rewarded in the end.
Gotta run to go study for my exam/finish up lab work!