Students in this program study materials/mechanics, mechanical design, dynamics/controls and thermal-fluid science—equipping them for jobs in nearly every industry.

Automatic Carmel Popcorn Cooling Tumbler

MEMBERS: Brandon Benavides; Sam Forner; Brandon Heiman; Alec Kuthan

ADVISOR: Dr. Rajeev Nair

TABLE: 122

As a group we were tasked with producing a popcorn tumbler that can automate company operations of mixing and preparing caramel popcorn for sale. This is to be done by tumbling popcorn in a drum, and will be time and speed regulated. This is intended to replace a non-automated system that is currently in use which often leads to a large amount of wasted product as a result of the non-uniform mixing process.

Pneumatic Weight Scale

MEMBERS: Neeshalini Devan; Zarif Enam; Kaitlyn Sabala; Nary Sean

ADVISOR: Dr. Rajeev Nair

TABLE: 123

Pneumatic is defined by containing or operated by air (alternatively gas) under pressure. As stated in the project title, the intentions are to design a low-cost pneumatic weight scale. The objective is to design a cost-effective weight scale operated by air or gas. Pneumatic weight scales, commonly known in industrial applications as pneumatic load cells, are applicable to warehouses with the purpose of weighing oil cases or drums. A load cell is characterized as a transducer that converts force into a measurable electrical output. The magnitude of the electrical output is directly proportional to the force. Among pneumatic load cells are other types including hydraulic, strain gauge, and capacitance. The advantages of a pneumatic load cell include insensitivity to temperature and explosion resistance.

Designing an Electrospinning Machine

MEMBERS: Alexandra Avenaim; Jonathan Coleman; Nhu Doan; Geordan Shaffer; Justin Wierman

ADVISOR: Dr. Rajeev Nair

TABLE: 124

Electrospinning is a process wherein a high voltage DC power supply is used to charge a polymer solution, creating a Taylor Cone and subsequently ejecting a thin strand of the solution towards a grounded metal drum. While in transit, the solution is stretched into a nanofiber, which is deposited on the collector. The objective of this project is to design a low-cost electrospinning machine for use with a 30-40 kV power supply, as well as a spinning collector drum capable of rotating at precisely controlled speed ranging from 0 to 3000 RPM. Many such machines are available for purchase, but the Wichita State Department of Biological Sciences is interested in investigating the possibility of building an electrospinning machine in-house that would cost significantly less than commercially available models. A two-axis gantry system, a rotating collector system, a syringe pump, and an enclosure with appropriate safety features have been developed for the purposes of this exploratory investigation.

Thermal Energy Storage System

MEMBERS: Victoria Bishop; Han Nguyen; Luke Oberle; Stephen Schuler

ADVISOR: Dr. Rajeev Nair

TABLE: 126

Sponsored by Trane and guided by Chris Torline, the scope of this project is to analyze and design a Thermal Energy Storage system that will optimize the operation of the chilled water plant at NE Magnet High School with the goal of shifting the peak load and reducing energy costs. This project requires collecting and utilizing data using analytics tools to determine the amount of ice tanks to be used, cost payback and period, and chiller capacity adjustment as recommendations to Trane Technologies and NE Magnet High School. The system optimization considers these following factors: energy cost, environment impacts, occupant comfort, maintenance costs, and life cycle costs.

Automated Heat Press Conveyor Process for Custom Air Filters

MEMBERS: Sarah Avino; Marlon Gerrero; Gissele Mosqueda; Jacob Eugene Schmidt

ADVISOR: Dr. Rajeev Nair

TABLE: 125

The goal is to design an easy-to-use and effective assembly line to fabricate custom air filters for KETCH, Inc. The assembly line is required to ensure the air filter products are squared and the frames are properly adhered to the filter fabric so as to avoid manual re-gluing after heat press processing. Ultimately, this ensures high product quality and increases production rate while also enabling persons served to work and operate at this assembly station.

Fluid Quality Sensing System for Jet-A fuel

MEMBERS: Kelton Deaver; Sahan Kalpana De Costa Mergngnage; Thinh Nguyen; Duc Phan

ADVISOR: Dr. Rajeev Nair

TABLE: 127

Our goal is to design a miniaturized fluid quality sensing system for existing full scaled design. The main function of this system is to measure the viscosity, density, temperature, and dielectric constant of the two working fluids dispensed by two syringes. The droplet will not be spilled out of the syringe tube but rather stay on the tip and be analyzed. High voltage currents will be supplied to the syringe tips to alternate current between the droplets. This will then create a square wave graph for us to compare and analyze the quality of the working fluid.

Smart Air Filter Quality Monitoring System

MEMBERS: Jennifer Speck; Dan Tha Thangi; Thy Tran; Khanh Tran

ADVISOR: Dr. Rajeev Nair

TABLE: 128

The air filter for an HVAC system is one of the most important components of the system to guarantee the quality of the air for people while preserving the useful life of all the other parts of the system that come into direct contact with the treated airflow. Therefore, the proper selection, inspection, use, and replacement of these filters is essential. In this project, we were tasked with building a Smart Air Filter Quality Monitoring System for $50 that could look at the pressure in your HVAC system for an overall calculation of HEPA filters health, it is possible to determine the status of the air filter for a timely replacement, reduces system operating capacity, and the cost of bills.

Ultra-Cold Refrigeration Container

MEMBERS: Jared Baughman; Ly Le; Frank Martin; Emily Ong

ADVISOR: Dr. Rajeev Nair

TABLE: 131

The goal of our project is to design an ultra-cold refrigeration system that has the capability to reach and maintain a temperature of -70 degrees Celsius. This system will need to be capable of being retrofitted into an ISO shipping container in order to safely transport the CoVid-19 vaccine. It is designed to cool a standard 40 foot long shipping container.

Automatic Hole Drilling Machine

MEMBERS: Jennifer Alfaro; Erasmo Hinojos; Marycarmen Rentaria

ADVISOR: Dr. Rajeev Nair

TABLE: 129

An electric drill is driven by an electric motor. The invention of the first electric drill is credited to James Arnot who patented it in 1889 and its original design purpose was to cut through rocks for mining applications. The purpose of this project was to design an automatic drilling machine which will allow for the rapid manufacturing of blades used in a sandblast system. This system will take the raw material, feed it down a conveyor system, drill two holes and countersink said holes, and lastly measure the part to length to trim by the operator. The design was accomplished using guidelines provided by our sponsor which include using T-slotted frame rails, a conveyor system to feed in and index raw flat bar steel, drilling heads that can be easily positioned and lastly, the ability to drop out scrap lengths of material without interrupting the process.

System Sensitivity of Ultra-Low NOx Furnace

MEMBERS: Joel Berumen; Jose Chacon Escalera; Leo Matzeder

ADVISOR: Dr. Rajeev Nair

TABLE: 130

In 2020, the United States used about 30.5 trillion cubic feet of natural gas with a notable 15% (4.65 trillion cubic feet) of this usage from the residential sector alone [eia.gov]. As climate change becomes more prevalent in governmental regulations, byproducts like Nitrogen Oxides (NOx) from the combustion process of natural gas furnaces have become a point of focus for several states. NOx gases have an ability to produce ground-level Ozone (O3) which is a result of mixing NOx, Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC’s), and sunlight. Also, Nitrous Oxide (N2O) – one of the NOx gas byproducts produced in the combustion process of natural gas – is a laudable 300 times more potent of a greenhouse gas compared to Carbon Dioxide (CO2). Johnson Controls released a unit capable of attaining <14 ng/J of NOx – a regulation imposed by the government in certain areas of the United States. This Ultra-Low NOx (ULN) furnace helped the company make an eco-friendlier product that can be used by homeowners in any state. Our senior project involves studying the input variables of a ULN furnace like air-fuel ratio, pressure drop across the burner, and flame temperature to optimize the furnace’s performance and minimize the production of NOx.

Bar Grating Panel Saw

MEMBERS: Ryan Leiker; Josh Monteith; Oanh Tran; Tam Tran

ADVISOR: Dr. Rajeev Nair

TABLE: 132

In the manufacturing process, multiple types and sizes of material are used to produce the various machines LS Industries sells to its customers. Many of the parts and components of the machines are produced in-house, from raw dimensioned material or spec-material, instead of outsourced to third party produced components. For various production machines, LS Industries is needing to cut common steel bar grating, from a raw material supplier, into specific sizes in repeatable volumes. Under the current process, fabricators at LS Industries are cutting the bar grating lengthwise and widthwise using hand tools and personal power tools. This has created a slow and tedious process which has shown itself to be a bottleneck in production, especially with the large volume, and variety of sizes for manufacturing demands. While desiring to keep this process in-house, as this allows more efficient small volume production and periodic changes, an automated process has been pursued to enable cutting of the bar grating with minimal labor effort. A semi-automated panel saw machine will be developed using an existing abrasive saw.

Automatic Semi Pallet Loader

MEMBERS: Bader Alazemi; Mobarak Alsubaie; Stacy Antunes; Mmasi Obi; Chadrack Tshimanga Kamba

ADVISOR: Dr. Rajeev Nair

TABLE: 133

The scope of this project is to design a semi pallet loader mechanism with hydraulics arm stretch and lifting mechanism. It will enable the forklift to contract and extend or use any other mechanism such as the scissor mechanism. It will also have a rotating base to enable the pallet loader to have 180 degree motion to reach, lift and drop the pallets. Material selection is also included in the scope of work. The modeling of the design was done using CATIA V5 and 3D Experience.