Category Archives: Outreach

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.


SYP Students Visit MFF

MFF SYPMichigan Tech’s Microfabrication Core Facility (MFF) was host to 15 students, ages 12-14, from the Summer Youth Program (SYP) Tuesday (July 18, 2017).

The students learned about the fabrication of silicon-based devices and how silicon wafers are produced. Additionally, they had hands-on experience in the cleanroom and used the photolithography process to transfer a pattern on a photomask to a silicon wafer. The pattern had a scale on it from 100 um (diameter of a human hair) to 1 um (diameter of bacteria) to allow the students to understand the scale that MFF users work at.

The students also hand cleaved silicon wafers to produce dies of gold Michigan Tech logos as a keepsake for their time in the MFF. A similar event is planned for another SYP group this Tuesday (July 25).

By Electrical and Computer Engineering. Read more at the Microfabrication Core Facility, by Chito Kendrick.

Students experience day in Microfabrication Facility

HOUGHTON — Michigan Tech’s Microfabrication Core Facility provided students with a glimpse of the microfabrication process.

The students suited up and worked in the cleanroom to learn about fabricating silicon-based products. At the end, silicon wafers were transformed into dies of gold Michigan Tech logos through the process of photolithography.

Read more and watch the video at ABC 10 News, by Rick Allen.

Summer Youth at Microfabrication Facility
Summer Youth at Microfabrication Facility
Chito Kendrick
Chito Kendrick

Senator Stabenow Learns About Robotics and Autonomous Vehicles

stabenow-visit-RSE

HOUGHTON — U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-Michigan) heard from Michigan Tech faculty and students about projects related to the Great Lakes during her April 1, 2017, visit to the university’s Great Lakes Research Center (GLRC) in Houghton.

Cameron Burke, Michigan Tech student in computer engineering, said he was excited to be working with the robotics program and autonomous vehicles and would probably focus on these in graduate school in the future. For example, he noted some of the experiments include sending the vehicles out into the snow or rain to determine how they could be safer than a regular car.

Read more and watch the videos at Keweenaw Now, by Michele Bourdieu.


Robotic Systems Enterprise Visits Jeffers High School

RSE-jeffers-outreach-20170327Michigan Technological University’s Robotic Systems Enterprise (RSE) recently made a visit to nearby Jeffers High School to introduce students to robotics and programming.

Responding to a request from Mr. Sam Kilpela, Jeffers Science and Math teacher, the RSE Outreach team presented an introduction to Scratch and showed off their programmable miniature robots, the Hackbots and Zumos.

The Scratch programming language lets the user create a program from a drag-and-drop system, making it much easier to learn as an introductory venture into programming. Since the students had previous knowledge of basic HTML, the Outreach team provided a look into more advanced programs such as the interactive Madlibs where the students could choose a series of words and generated a sentence from those words.

Through on-site demonstrations in the classroom, the Outreach team hopes to give pre-college students a look into the world of robotics and other STEM fields.

Robotic Systems Enterprise is an industry-driven enterprise that focuses on seamlessly integrating exceptional knowledge in electronics, robotics, and programming to solve real world engineering problems. RSE is advised by Dr. Glen Archer.


Hancock Middle School Students Get a Taste for the World of Programming

RSEoutreach-hancock_20170209Members of the Robotic Systems Enterprise (RSE) at Michigan Technological University recently visited Jen Davis’ eighth grade science class at Hancock Middle School to share their excitement in the rapidly growing field of robotics.

During the activities, students were shown how to use Scratch, a drag-and-drop programming platform which enables beginners to learn programming techniques without having to use complex syntax. From the Scratch platform, students were then shown how to create simple programs such as Hello World, which is the induction into a myriad of programming languages.

The visit was a huge success as the students enjoyed interacting, editing, and playing the Scratch programs that they helped the RSE Outreach members to create. Through events like this, RSE hopes to inspire future generations to the area of robotics and STEM education.

The Robotic Systems Enterprise is housed within the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and is advised by Dr. Glen Archer. RSE is an industry-driven enterprise that focuses on seamlessly integrating exceptional knowledge in electronics, robotics, and programming to solve real world engineering problems.