Cameron Philo Wins Best Technology Venture at 2019 CMU Competition

Cameron Philo
Cameron Philo

Five student teams from Michigan Technological University traveled to Central Michigan University (CMU) in Mount Pleasant, MI to compete in the ninth annual New Venture Competition held Friday, April 12, 2019.

Cameron Philo won Best Technology Venture for Life Pro Jackets and was awarded $10,000. Philo participated in Michigan Tech’s I-Corps Site Program last Fall. I-Corps is a team-based program structure that was developed through a partnership between the National Science Foundation (NSF) and Silicon Valley entrepreneurs.

Read more at the Pavlis Honors College Blog.

Related:

Cameron Philo receives Best Green Innovation – Bob Mark Elevator Pitch Competition


Giving Day is April 11th!

April 11th is Michigan Tech’s first 24-Hour Giving Challenge! Support your favorite area of campus by making a gift of any amount!  There are so many opportunities throughout the day to have our gifts matched along with additional funds from generous donors. Leroy Keranen ’61 has generously agreed to donate $25,000 to the robotics engineering fund if 25 people donate any amount.  Simply go to www.give.mtu.edu and click on the Robotics Engineering campaign. #goldblackgiveback

 


Christopher Middlebrook Presents for SPIE

Christopher T. Middlebrook
Christopher T. Middlebrook

Chris Middlebrook (ECE) was recently hosted by the ECE SPIE Chapter at Georgia Tech. On March 12, Middlebrook provided a presentation entitled “Embedded and Integrated Passive Waveguides and Active Integrated Optical Devices.”

SPIE is the international society for optics and photonics. Details of Middlebrook’s presentation are available online.


ECE Texting Campaign a Success

Students at computers
Photo by Glen Archer.

The first Electrical and Computer Engineering department texting campaign was held on March 26, 2019. The texting campaign is similar to the calling campaign the department put on earlier in the semester; however, students were able to send in questions via text.

Five current Tech students held conversations with approximately thirty students who had been accepted to Michigan Tech, answering questions all across the board.

The event was a success, and our students had a great time answering questions and discussing their experiences as a Husky—which can clearly be seen by the smiles.

By Kelsey Robinson, EE senior.


Funding for On-Ice and Underwater Noise Sources

Timothy Havens
Timothy Havens

Timothy Havens (ECE) is the principal investigator on a research and development project that has received $96,643 from the Naval Surface Warfare Center.

Andrew Barnard (ME-EM) is the Co-PI on the project “Localization, Tracking, and Classification of On-Ice and Underwater Noise Sources Using Machine Learning.”

This is the first year of a potential three-year project totaling $299,533.

By Sponsored Programs.


Heart Rate Monitor for Engineers Week 2019

Heart Rate Monitor group
Students working on soldering, with Blue Marble Security members assisting with questions.

Engineers’ Week this year took place February 17 – 23, 2019. Michigan Technological University’s nationally recognized engineering honor society, Tau Beta Pi (TBP), partnered with Blue Marble Security Enterprise to participate in a Heart Rate Monitor (HRM) Event. The event was held on Friday, February 22, where approximately 15 TBP members learned the basics of soldering.

The TBP members had various levels of soldering knowledge, some being beginners and others having plenty of experience. They represented various majors while participating. The Blue Marble Security outreach team supervised for those with little experience and answered questions.

The HRM is a basic circuit used to teach students how to read color bands on resistors. The colors correspond to the resistor ohm value and polarity regarding the device LEDs. Besides basic component knowledge, the students learned the correct and safe process of through hole soldering. Upon the completion of populating and soldering the components in place, students were given an integrated circuit and nine volt battery to check the operation of the board. The TBP members took their completed heart rate monitor boards home as souvenirs of their soldering experiences and of Engineers’ Week 2019.

Related:

Boy Scouts Learn to Solder Heart Rate Monitors

Society of Women Engineers Learn to Solder Heart Rate Monitors



Better to Light a Candle: Chapter One

Christopher T. Middlebrook
Christopher T. Middlebrook

Michigan Tech’s new course in printed circuit board (PCB) manufacturing is the topic of a series of columns in I-Connect 007. The first column “Better to Light a Candle” Chapter One—Prepping the Next Generation,” by Marc Carter, features an interview with Christopher Middlebrook (ECE).

Better to Light a Candle: Chapter One—Prepping the Next Generation

Editor’s Note: This is the first in a series of columns on a new university course in PCB manufacturing at Michigan Technological University. Marc will chronicle the progress of this class, interview the guest lecturers, introduce the students, etc.

There has been a considerable amount of (electronic) ink and words shared in our industry bemoaning the graying-out of our industry and the growing shortage of skilled people at all levels. (See the May 2017 PCB007 Magazine column “Help Wanted—and How!” for just one example). As is usually the case, though, when all is said and done, more has been said than done.

That is why it was so refreshing to learn of someone who has decided to do something about it. Enter Dr. Christopher Middlebrook, a professor at Michigan Technological University (MTU) in Houghton, Michigan. On January 14, 2019, he will open the first session of “EE4800: Printed Circuit Board Fabrication”—a hands-on engineering class intended to give undergraduate students an introduction to the basics of printed circuit design, fabrication, and assembly.

Read more at I-Connect 007, by Marc Carter.

In subsequent columns, Carter will chronicle the progress of the class, interview guest lecturers and talk to students. In addition to photos of Michigan Tech’s equipment suite for the new course, Carter interviewed instructor Chris Middlebrook (ECE). In the interview section of the column, Middlebrook tells Carter he is amazed by the response and guidance from industry in launching the new course.

I-Connect007 is a extensive global source for news and original content serving the printed circuit design, fabrication and assembly/EMS market.

Altium Sponsors Use of Software for PCB Design Class

Michigan Tech has entered into an agreement with Altium for the use of software in a classroom setting. The 12-month arrangement allows the University the use of Altium Designer software used to design printed circuit boards (PCBs).

The software will be primarily used in EE4800, Printed Circuit Board Fabrication, taught by Christopher Middlebrook (ECE). The agreement includes 20 licenses to the latest version of the Altium Designer software, as well as free updates and upgrades.

Middlebrook says he is pleased with the agreement, valued at $116,850. “Using Altium will allow students to have first-hand experience and exposure with a globally recognized software design package,” he said.

EE4800 is a hands-on undergraduate engineering class that teaches students the basics of printed circuit design, fabrication and assembly. This is a new course with its first offering in Spring of 2019. The class is the subject of what is expected to be a series of columns in I-Connect007.

Altium is a multinational software corporation headquartered in San Diego that focuses on electronics design systems for 3D PCB design and embedded system development.

By Electrical and Computer Engineering.


Boy Scouts Learn to Solder Heart Rate Monitors

BMS Tyler Arthur
Blue Marble Security member Tyler Arthur is showing the Boy Scouts a soldering demonstration

Blue Marble Security Enterprise assisted the local Boy Scouts on Tuesday November 27th, 2018,  as they participated in a heart rate monitor soldering event. The event is used to teach the basics of electrical engineering components in an interactive and effective manner. The heart rate monitor, once soldered with correct connections, will cause the LEDs to light and with the use of the sensor the LEDs will blink with the operator’s heart rate. Around seventeen boy scouts ranging in the middle school age participated in the event with seven Blue Marble Security members as well as their advisor who monitored and assisted in the lab.

The focus of the heart rate monitor lab is to introduce the basic concepts of electric engineering to those with little experience. Some of the concepts learned are how the color bands on resistors correspond to the resistor’s value, the polarity of diodes, and why it is important to place them correctly. However, the focus of the lab was to make effective through hole soldering connections. Scouts who were unsure about the process got a quick demo from an Outreach team member. All the members got portions of their boards populated with components within the time limit, with a few getting the boards completed and tested. All the boy scouts will get to take a heart rate monitor board home after the Outreach members troubleshoot and finish up some of the boards. The boy scouts had a wonderful time, and learned a new valuable skill.

BMS with Boy Scouts
Michael, John, and Shawn BMS members answering various questions the scouts have.
BMS Soldering Lab
Overview of the lab with the scouts working on their heart rate monitor soldering boards.

Society of Women Engineers Learn to Solder Heart Rate Monitors

Heart Monitor Device
The completed heart rate monitor board SWE members took as a souvenir.

On Friday November 9th, 2018 Blue Marble Security hosted a heart rate monitor soldering lab for the Society of Women Engineers (SWE). The heart rate monitor, once fully soldered with correct connections, would allow the LEDs around the edge to blink with the operator’s heart rate. Sixteen SWE members were present along with six Blue Marble Security members to monitor and assist in the lab.

SWE Students Lab
Students working on the heart rate monitor boards with BMS members supervising.

The focus of the heart rate monitor lab is to introduce basic concepts of electrical engineering to those with little or no knowledge. The SWE members specifically learned how the color bands on resistors correspond to the resistor’s value, as well as the polarity of a diode and why it is present. The main focus of the lab was to teach the SWE members to through hole solder appropriately so that there would be strong connections on the board for current to flow. All of the SWE members completed the lab within the time allowed. Each took a heart rate monitor board as a souvenir to remember their new skill.