Senior Projects

In the fall and spring each year, USD's Shiley-Marcos School of Engineering students present their capstone projects -- or senior projects -- to students, faculty, and the community. These presentations are open to the public. Please check the Engineering Events calendar.

Fall Expo: Electrical and mechanical engineering seniors present a preliminary 2-dimensional mid-project update n poster format on the progress of their capstone project.

Spring Showcase: Electrical, mechanical, and industrial and systems engineering seniors present their final projects in 3-dimensional format.

Spring 2014 Projects

Electrical Engineering

Pulsed Electromagnetic Field (PEMF) Generator – A system to demonstrate the relationship between controlled magnetic fields and biological tissue. A controllable PEMF generator can be used for medical and research purposes.

Remote Hearing System – A system comprised of intelligent microphone-transmitters and a vibrating receiver, designed to alert the deaf of recognized household sounds.

Smart Power Factor Corrector – A system to reduce overall power consumption by correcting the power factor inside household appliances. Each second, the power factor will be calculated and compensated-for.

Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) Temperature Sensor – This project will improve RFID temperature sensors by adding a visual cue that will alert users when a critical temperature is reached or surpassed; an Android app will read, write, and display the RFID tag’s status.

Electro-Optical Speed Measurement System for Trains - This device determines the speed of a train using optical data from a forward facing camera. The system measures the speed at which images of stationary objects are passed, then calculates the speed of the vehicle itself.

CANBUS Actuator Module –A compact and rugged actuator module that uses sensor data sent through a CANBUS connection to position the servos controlling the antenna of a mobile satellite receiver.

Motion Sensor for a Satellite Antenna – This motion sensor will ensure that a controlled antenna is pointing to a satellite at all times.

Industrial and Systems Engineering

Sustainability of L-3 Communications – The goal of this project is to reduce the energy consumption at L-3 Communications by 25% and to improve the sustainability of the facility."

Encoder Production Process Improvement - The goal of this project is to decrease lead time and
labor time related to the production of L-3 Telemetry-West's PCM 330 Encoder. This is done through simplifying steps, eliminating unnecessary steps, and statistically justifying procedure changes.

Improving Gels Manufacturing at Thermo Fisher Scientific - This project aims to improve overall operations in Thermo Fisher's gels manufacturing line via Lean / Six Sigma tools including work analysis,
statistical process control, 5S and DMAIC.

Thermo Fisher Packstation and Distribution Layout and Flow Improvement - The distribution center employees were complaining about the area’s layout, as it was crowded and packed. Our team had to come up with several alternative layouts for the international distribution area utilizing the
facilities planning concepts. Our main priority was Employee safety and satisfaction, and improving productivity as well as reducing costs.

Mechanical Engineering

Wheelchair for Elderly - An improved wheelchair design with seat lift assist and drive wheel coupling functionality targeting elderly and limited mobility users.

CPU Cooling System - High performance closed-loop liquid CPU cooling device featuring a 3D printed microjet cooling array and high conductivity CNC machined copper base.

Rheometer - Lab apparatus designed to measure viscosity of Newtonian fluids; parallel plate rotating stage with external oven enables testing up to 250 C.

Lathe Brake - Safety retrofit to existing student shop lathe featuring one-touch brake engagement, a 4-bar toggle linkage and a mechanical disc brake caliper.

Water Purification System - Portable, grid-independent clean water system targeted towards disaster relief efforts. Design includes dual-mode human and solar powered pumps, reverse osmosis filtration and UV sterilization.

Bike-Assist Device - Removable and battery-powered motorized device to assist bicycle propulsion, featuring a 400W brushless motor and a novel automatic transmission.

Water Pressure Power - Hydroelectric turbine generating power from excess-pressure municipal water supply, including a 3D printed turbine and an integral generator.