The mechanical engineering capstone students were recently given a task to complete as their pre-capstone project titled Project POP. For this project, students teamed up to design, build and test a mechanism capable of traversing and maneuvering through a given obstacle course. After that, it had to transform itself into a piercing mechanism that could pierce through a surface layer made of Styrofoam. Then the mechanism had to pop a balloon lying underneath the Styrofoam surface. Students use Project POP to learn about principles of design.
- The weight of the mechanism, including the power source, should not exceed two pounds
- The device should have dimensions no longer than 1 ft. x 1 ft. x 1 ft. in any direction
The Performance Test consisted of two parts:
- Prospecting the obstacle course—This part tested the ability of the mechanism to traverse any kind of terrain, including sand, gravel, road bumps and grease. The amount of time taken to traverse the track from start to finish was used in the calculation of points.
- Piercing—This part tested the versatility of the mechanism. After the mechanism crossed the finish line, it had to pierce through the Styrofoam layer and pop a balloon underneath the surface. The time clock started as soon as the mechanism crossed the finish line and then stopped when the mechanism had completely pierced the balloon. The time was used in the calculation of points for this portion of the test.
Each team was required to go through both performance tests twice. Students were allowed two minutes to set up their mechanism before each run on the obstacle course. The weight of the mechanism was measured before undergoing any of the performance tests. Lastly, the sum of the original points from both runs + bonus points – penalties was considered the group score. The team with the most points was granted as the winners of the competition.
1st Place: Team 2.8
Members: Jeremy Adams, Michael Allen, Keelan Prewett and Kyle Wager
2nd Place: Team 1.6
Members: Garrett Svane, Michael Howell, Tyler Spencer and Colin Sullivan
3rd Place: Team 2.11
Members: Joshua Ellenburg, Remington Butler, Michelle Musgrove and Marli Sussman
Congratulations to all the teams! Next stop: Capstone Poster Fair
To view more photos of Project POP, visit the AME Facebook page.