Category Archives: News

Patrick McCabe applies his ME-EM education as entrepreneur

PMcC_4652-150x202aMichigan Technological University is renowned for their prestigious engineering program as they prepare students to enter a disorganized world with the tools and capabilities to make a constructive difference. Today, green technologies bring innovation and change into our daily lives; and, Michigan Tech alumnus Patrick McCabe continues to utilize his strong engineering background, along with his brilliant entrepreneurial skills to redefine the solar industry.

Patrick is COO and co-founder of GreenLancer, a Detroit-based startup company that utilizes an e-commerce platform to produce high-quality solar design documents. Creating solar designs may seem simple on the surface, but the innovative combination of engineering and virtual manufacturing allows GreenLancer to actively compete with the traditional brick and mortar design firms.

Upon graduating with his BSME degree, Patrick moved to Salt Lake City, then to San Diego to pursue a job in the solar industry. He began to work from home as a freelancer, but that wasn’t enough. Alas, GreenLancer emerged, originally named Stellar PV. Pat, along with a few friends, traveled across the country doing web-based design work for solar electricity companies. After several years on the road, Pat decided to bring the work back to Detroit in hopes of redefining manufacturing and the working class, both of which have plagued the city’s reputation in the past.

The idea of cultivating a remote workforce, managing workflow, and streamlining processes via technology began to attract attention from the city’s evolving tech start-up scene. Through family and friends, Patrick was able to raise $50,000 to bring the company to Bizdom, a start-up incubator on the heart of Detroit. There, generous investors gave an initial investment of $1 million to continue the advancement GreenLancer. In April of 2015, the company finished raising a Series B funding of $5 million from new and existing investors. The trajectory of GreenLancer and its concept is moving upward from solar to potentially all green technologies.

Patrick applauds Michigan Technological University for challenging him during his academic career. “I’m grateful for the education I received at Michigan Tech as it has helped to propel my achievements,” Patrick stated. Similarly, “It is exciting to see fellow alumni contributing to solving problems across the world.” Pat is looking forward to watching the continued success of the engineering program at Michigan Tech.


Article about GreenLancer

“GreenLancer raises Series B funding round of $5 million, expands in Detroit” Article from Crain’s Detroit

“Patrick McCabe, 29: CEO and co-founder, GreenLancer Energy Inc., Detroit” (Article from Crain's Detroit)

For more information about GreenLancer, please visit GreenLancer.com.

Nina Mahmoudian Receives a Young Investigator Program Award from Office of Naval Research

image123120-horizOnly 36 faculty across the US were invited to join the Young Investigator Program (YIP) from the Office of Naval Research this year; additionally, only a small percent of faculty receive the CAREER Award from the National Science Foundation (NSF). Nina Mahmoudian, an assistant professor of mechanical engineering-engineering mechanics at Michigan Technological University, is one of a select few to receive both in the same year.

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ME-EM Hosts High Voltage/Temperature Materials and Structures (HVT) Meeting

Odegard2The week of May 18th ME-EM hosted the semi-annual NSF I/UCRC Industrial Advisory Board meeting for the Center for Novel High Voltage/Temperature Materials and Structures (HVT). The meeting was organized by Site Director Greg Odegard (ME-EM) and Co-Directors Julie King (ChE) and Paul Sanders (MSE).

The meeting was attended by 46 faculty, graduate students and Industrial Advisory Board members from Michigan Tech’s Departments of Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics, Chemical Engineering and Materials Science Engineering; University of Denver, University of Illinois Urbana-Champagne and Boeing, Bonneville Power Administration, BP, CTC Global, General Cable, John Crane Inc. Global, Lockheed Martin Space Systems, Southwire Company and Western Area Power Administration.

The mission of the HVT Center is to develop and evaluate new materials and structures for a range of HVT technological applications, particularly for the power transmission and aerospace industries.

The HVT Center has entered its second year of operation; the meeting was focused on the review of the current projects, proposals for future research and discussions on directions for Center growth. The Center is jointly funded by NSF and the Industrial Advisory Board member companies.

Bioprinting in 3D: Looks Like Candy, Could Regenerate Nerve Cells

image121814-horizThe printer looks like a toaster oven with the front and sides removed. Its metal frame is built up around a stainless steel circle lit by an ultraviolet light. Stainless steel hydraulics and thin black tubes line the back edge, which lead to an inner, topside box made of red plastic. In front, the metal is etched with the red Bio Bot logo. All together, the gray metal frame is small enough to fit on top of an old-fashioned school desk, but nothing about this 3D printer is old school. In fact, the tissue-printing machine is more like a sci-fi future in the flesh—and it has very real medical applications.
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ME-EM News Briefs

Tech Century, a science and technology news website published by the Engineering Society of Detroit, reported on a visit by ESD executives to Michigan Tech and plans to establish a student chapter of the ESD at Michigan Tech.

Tech Century, an engineering and technology news website published by the Engineering Society of Detroit, reported on Michigan Tech’s Department of Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics being chosen by the National Science Foundation (NSF) as one of five nationwide to participate in a new program designed to increase diversity among undergraduate mechanical engineering students (see article: “Michigan Tech 1 of 5 Universities Chosen to Help Improve Diversity in Mechanical Engineering Education”).

Principal Investigator Ezra Bar-Ziv (MEEM) has received a research and development grant of $250,016 from the U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities for the project Demonstration of Densification of Biocoal Prepared from Low Lignin Woods.

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Engineering Students Win Air Force Research Lab University Design Challenge

A Senior Design team won top prize at the Air Force Research Lab University Design Challenge with its design for a wearable cooling device for soldiers in the field.

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Winning Senior Design team, from the left: Jessica Buck, Sean Mackey, Sophia Rizzo, Nicholas Sill (in the back), John Schuman, Joshua Kizer (wearing the suit), Jaclyn Johnson, Mikhail Alexander, Kevin Johnson, Bill Endres.
Winning Senior Design team, from the left: Jessica Buck, Sean Mackey, Sophia Rizzo, Nicholas Sill (in the back), John Schuman, Joshua Kizer (wearing the suit), Jaclyn Johnson, Mikhail Alexander, Kevin Johnson, Bill Endres.

Listening Under the Ice

IMG_4429There are two ways to measure sounds: actively and passively. “Passive acoustics is just listening to whatever is out there,” says Andrew Barnard, an assistant professor in mechanical engineering studying acoustics at Michigan Tech. He helped install a passive hydrophone system off the dock at the Great Lakes Research Center (GLRC), which is a unique set-up under the ice.

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PACE Engineering Design Competition ME-EM April 2015

IMG_0044 (1280x853)The Michigan Tech Mechanical Engineering version of the Partners for the Advancement of Collaborative Engineering Education PACE Engineering Design Competition was held on April 23, 2015.

Photo Gallery is on 2015 ME-EM PACE Contest at Flickr

Project Description: The design project is mainly involving CAD modeling of a real world example but designed by the students specially for the competition. The students apply the skill they learned on Modeling, Assemblies, and drafting.  Some of them may include analysis and animations.  The students are required to select a project on their own and it should be original. They as a team will create the parts and assemblies and present at the competition. CAD modeling/assembly with analysis, of any equipment used in the project.

Judges for April 2015 PACE were KVC Rao, Michigan Tech ME-EM; John Baker, Siemens; Radheshyam Tewari, Michigan Tech ME-EM; Christopher Morgan, General Motors; Laura McCausland, General Motors; Andrew Rohr, General Motors; Chris Eaton, General Motors.

Judging Criteria
Form — Design Concept, Creativity, Perceived Value, Safety
Fit — Physical Model (realism, aesthetics, detail, supporting design)
Function — Design Parameters and Performance (math models, simulations, spreadsheets, etc.)
Presentation — Effective, Professional, Credible
Teamwork and Collaboration

1st Place Modular Human Figure John Ford,   Michael Kita,  Cathy Nguyen,   Scott Potrykus
1st Place Modular Human Figure John Ford, Michael Kita, Cathy Nguyen, Scott Potrykus
1st Place Modular Human Figure John Ford,   Michael Kita,  Cathy Nguyen,   Scott Potrykus
1st Place Modular Human Figure John Ford, Michael Kita, Cathy Nguyen, Scott Potrykus

See all the rest of the photos at Photo Gallery is on 2015 ME-EM PACE Contest at Flickr

ME-EM Senior Recognition Banquet April 14th

The ME-EM Senior Recognition Banquet and Order of the Engineer Program was held on Tuesday, April 14, at 6 p.m. in Rozsa Center Lobby.

The keynote speaker was Jeff Zawisza, Fellow at Dow Chemical and a 1983 ME-EM alumnus.

The keynote speaker was Jeff Zawisza
The keynote speaker was Jeff Zawisza

ME-EM Outstanding Enterprise Student Award: William Gielda, Clean Snowmobile Enterprise team

ME-EM Outstanding Enterprise Student Award: William Gielda, Clean Snowmobile Enterprise team
ME-EM Outstanding Enterprise Student Award: William Gielda, Clean Snowmobile Enterprise team

ME-EM Teacher of the Year: Charles Van Karsen

ME-EM Teacher of the Year: Charles Van Karsen
ME-EM Teacher of the Year: Charles Van Karsen

According to the Order of the Engineer manual: The Order of the Engineer is a solemn obligation to oneself to uphold devotion to the standards and the dignity of the engineering profession. It is an obligation to turn to practical use the principles of science and the means of technology…to serve humanity by making the best use of earth’s precious wealth.

The Obligation is a creed similar to the oath attributed to Hippocrates (460-377 B.C.) that is generally taken by medical graduates and which sets forth an ethical code. The Obligation likewise, contains parts of the Canon of Ethics of major engineering societies. Initiates, as they accept it voluntarily, pledge to uphold the standards and dignity of the engineering profession and to serve humanity by making the best use of Earth’s precious wealth.

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Order of the Engineer
Order of the Engineer

Photos of the ME-EM Senior Recognition Banquet included in the ME-EM Photo Gallery

ME-EM Students Win Awards at Design Expo 2015

138IMG_9708The mechanical engineering-engineering mechanics department held its semi-annual Senior Capstone Design Day Program on Tuesday April 21, 2015. Eighteen teams presented the fruits of their efforts over the past two semesters during presentations to industry reps, faculty, staff, students and MEEM External Advisory Board members. The teams displayed posters and, in some cases, their prototypes in the rear first-floor hallway of the MEEM building. This year’s project customers include American Axle & Manufacturing, Chrysler, John Deere, MacLean-Fogg, and others. Most presentations are open to the public.

Photos of the ME-EM capstone senior design teams can be seen in the ME-EM Capstone Senior Design Teams Photo Gallery

Spring 2015 4911 final presentations

Michigan Tech Design Expo 2015

3rd Place Award –  Velovations Team Leaders: Ian Connick, Mechanical Engineering and Kyle McGurk, Electrical Engineering Advisor: Steve Lehmann and Paulus Van Susante, Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics Sponsors: Specialized, Thomson, Department of Kinesiology and Integrative Physiology
3rd Place Award – Velovations
Team Leaders: Ian Connick, Mechanical Engineering and Kyle McGurk, Electrical Engineering
Advisor: Steve Lehmann and Paulus Van Susante, Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics
Sponsors: Specialized, Thomson, Department of Kinesiology and Integrative Physiology

3rd Place Award – Velovations
Team Leaders: Ian Connick, Mechanical Engineering and Kyle McGurk, Electrical Engineering
Advisor: Steve Lehmann and Paulus Van Susante, Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics
Sponsors: Specialized, Thomson, Department of Kinesiology and Integrative Physiology

Project Overview: Our team is dedicated to working on bicycle and bicycling industry related projects. For the 2014-2015 academic year, Velovations has more than twenty-five students from various majors divided into four projects. The projects are: a pedal that offers the ability to transition from clipped in to a platform and back at the push of a button; a system to allow tire pressure change on the fly;
an inexpensive winter commuting tire; and an innovative exercise system for wheelchair users that will allow further physical research. Velovations projects cover the complete product development
range, from idea conception, research, and development, to customer communication, testing, and ultimately manufacturing.

 Honorable Mention – Chrysler 300 Split Tailgate Team Members: Kelly Shanahan, Joshua Yagley, Alex Bancroft, Jerad Marble, and Parry Ragland, Mechanical Engineering Advisor: Kevin Johnson, Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics Sponsor: Fiat Chrysler Automobiles

Honorable Mention – Chrysler 300 Split Tailgate
Team Members: Kelly Shanahan, Joshua Yagley, Alex Bancroft, Jerad Marble, and Parry Ragland, Mechanical
Engineering
Advisor: Kevin Johnson, Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics
Sponsor: Fiat Chrysler Automobiles

Honorable Mention – Chrysler 300 Split Tailgate
Team Members: Kelly Shanahan, Joshua Yagley, Alex Bancroft, Jerad Marble, and Parry Ragland, Mechanical
Engineering
Advisor: Kevin Johnson, Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics
Sponsor: Fiat Chrysler Automobiles

Project Overview: Our goal is to design, engineer, build, and test a split decklid adapted from the current Chrysler 300 architecture. This decklid system will provide the customer both the access required of typical decklids without the upswing of the lower waterfall area and the added feature of a tailgate style lower swing out panel which will provide a surface for tailgate functions. This feature is rare in the industry and provides an opportunity for segment differentiation creating a unique selling point.

Honorable Mention – Dynamometer Calibration Device Team Members: Kristopher Benaglio, Christopher DeGroot, Adam Deibler, Kenneth Smith, Mechanical Engineering Advisor: Paul van Susante, Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics Sponsor: John Deere
Honorable Mention – Dynamometer Calibration Device
Team Members: Kristopher Benaglio, Christopher DeGroot, Adam Deibler, Kenneth Smith, Mechanical Engineering
Advisor: Paul van Susante, Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics
Sponsor: John Deere

Honorable Mention – Dynamometer Calibration Device
Team Members: Kristopher Benaglio, Christopher DeGroot, Adam Deibler, Kenneth Smith, Mechanical Engineering
Advisor: Paul van Susante, Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics
Sponsor: John Deere

Project Overview: This design team is working with John Deere to develop a new dynamometer torque meter calibration device. A dynamometer, commonly referred to as a dyno, is a popular test instrument used to measure variables such as torque, speed, and power output. The current calibration method used by John Deere utilizes a static weight stack attached to a moment arm. This design must be replaced because it exceeds the dynamometer test cell envelope, is difficult to transport from test cell to test cell, requires considerable time and effort for two workers to assemble and disassemble, and requires the repetitive lifting of 40 to 45 pound weights.

See a complete recap summary of the 2015 Michigan Tech Design Expo