Mechanical Engineering Capstone Design Showcase

You’re invited to the Mechanical Engineering Capstone Design Showcase!

When: July 29th 10:00am – 2:00pm

Where: ELW Lobby (Engineering Lab Wing, UVic)

This year’s Showcase features fourteen projects from working prototypes to finished products, all sponsored by industry or internal clients.

Group 1 - Automated Rotifer Food Blender for Industrial Plankton

Industrial Plankton produces automated bioreactors that produce bio secure, high-density algae as a food source for shellfish, shrimp, and finfish hatcheries. Industrial Plankton has requested designing and prototyping an automated blending system to handle the food mixing for a new rotifer bioreactor. The scope of the project focuses on the mixing mechanism of the system.

Group 2 - Redox Flow Battery Flow Field Optimization

Design and testing a model of a half cell for a redox flow battery (RFB) is completed. The ability of a flow field to equally distribute the electrolyte to the electrode has the potential to improve the efficiency of the RFB. A flow field design is optimized to reduce pressure losses, maintain velocity, and ensure maximum dispersion of the electrolyte across the electrode.

Group 3 – Universal Testing Machine

A control systems overhaul of a universal testing machine (UTM) is requested by the Department of Civil Engineering represented by Dr. Armando Tura. The machine is to be used for testing the tensile, compressive, and bending strength of various material samples. The designed control system implements manual control of the machine with variable velocity, a kill-switch, and an on-machine display of test results.

Group 4 – Expanding Cog System

Nomad Awnings has requested the design and manufacturing of an expanding cog bicycle transmission to replace the common derailleur-cassette transmission currently used on most bicycles. The current derailleur-cassette transmission is bulky, expensive, and prone to damage resulting in frequent adjustment and part replacement. The proposed transmission design is based around a cog that can expand or contract to change gear ratios rather than moving the chain between the multiple cogs of the rear cassette.

Group 5 – Reaction Frame

A large-scale reaction frame is designed with enough working space for loading test. The 3D model, 2D manufacture drawings and all the simulation and analysis results are delivered to the clients, the Department of Civil Engineering, University of Victoria. Detailed information regarding building construction information and analysis software is provided to the client.

Group 6 – Reverse Osmosis Bio-fouling Chemical Testing Unit

The team has developed a high precision instrument to measure the flow rate of purified water in order for the purpose of testing the performance of membrane cleansing chemical agents. The development of the biofouling control in reverse osmosis (RO) is sponsored by Dr. Heather Buckley at the University of Victoria.

Group 7 – Nitrous Oxide Fill System for Hybrid Rocket

UVic Rocketry has requested a comprehensive first iteration of the fill system to conceptualize and design a rocket with a hybrid propulsion system. One of the auxiliary systems required for this rocket will be a remotely controlled fill system to supply the rocket with the Nitrous Oxide oxidizer. The project presents a full design for the intermediate Nitrous Oxide and oxidizer tanks, a disengagement mechanism once the fill is complete and launch condition is achieved, and the process and instrumentation design of the valve and feed system, with properly specified components backed by sufficient research of the fluid properties and required industry standards.

Group 8 – Ocean Thermocline Apparatus

An ocean imager test setup prototype is developed to verify whether sonar waves successfully reflect off of the water’s thermocline layer. The thermocline is a layer with a steep temperature gradient separating warm and cold water approximately 10 meters below the water’s surface on freshwater lakes. This devise will allow for identifying the properties of sonar waves interacting with a change in density of mediums underwater. This project is sponsored by Dr. Rodney Herring from the Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Victoria.

Group 9 - Kayak Multi-Function Device

This project makes the sport of kayaking safer and more accessible. A device is constructed a device that makes the typical ocean kayak truly amphibious using retractable landing gear; introduces a manual/automatically-deployable high-speed capsize recovery system; enhances kayak visibility for safer operations amongst other water traffic; improves the self-rescue outrigger system for effective operation in emergency scenarios; and, provides for superior watertight storage and access to items frequently needed by the paddler. This project is sponsored by Mike Skinner, an industrial design enthusiast and a solution-oriented inventor.

Group 10 – Spinscan Film Scanner

The Spinscan Film Scanner is developed to provide a solution for preserving 16mm films through digitization before the film decays forever. Existing solutions are very complicated and costly, but the Spinscan offers a cheaper and higher quality alternative. This project included the design and prototyping of a Spinscan and full final design. Spinscan Film Scanner is sponsored by Makotronics Enterprises Inc.

Group 11 - Fatigue proofing and component revision of a double-acting steam engine

The design of a thermodynamically optimized, size-scalable, double-acting steam engine is completed. The design processes are based on desired horsepower, rated pressure and size have been streamlined, and the desired end result of the project is a set of working drawings such that a small-scale prototype engine may be produced. The engine is fitted with a variable-expansion valve drive mechanism, such that its output may be adjusted in forward or reverse operation between power and economy. At maximum economy setting, steam is cut off at a point during cylinder admission such that it expands to the exhaust back pressure. This project was sponsored internally.

Group 12 - Low-cost Calorimeter

Modern solutions for specific heat and thermal conductivity measurements are expensive and are therefore only accessible to large, well-funded research organizations. A new low-cost calorimeter is designed for providing accurate specific heat capacity and thermal conductivity readings for various specimens in an enclosed environment. Additionally, the calorimeter and its associated components are designed to be intuitive for end-users in order to optimize its usability for both research and development in academia and industry. This project was sponsored by Dr. Andrew Rowe.

Group 13 – Active Altitude Control system

A functioning, full-scale prototype of an Active Altitude Control system (AACS) is designed. The system includes the physical mechanism, basic electronics, and control system. This prototype will be constructed for integration into UVR’s MVP-4 experimental sounding rocket, a 4.6-inch outer diameter rocket with a targeted apogee of 10,000 ft above ground level. The project was supported by UVic Rocketry.

Group 14 – Microfluidic Pressure Controlled Flow System

A microfluidic controlled pressure system, capable of delivering consistent small scale fluid flow for bio technical applications is built. The project is sponsored by DP Labs and Biotechnology Inc. This project included developing a prototype and a control system