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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Seniors dazzle judges at Design Day

Shane Bekian

Students browse booths at Engineering Design Day in the Student Union Memorial Center on Tuesday. The Interdisciplinary Engineering Design Program divides seniors from the College of Engineering into teams, working with sponsors such as Raytheon, Tucson Electric Power and Honeywell.

A year’s worth of work came together for seniors at the UA College of Engineering’s 13th Annual Engineering Design Day on Tuesday.

The Interdisciplinary Engineering Design Program divides engineering seniors into teams, working with sponsors such as Raytheon, Tucson Electric Power and Honeywell. Engineering Design Day consists of project demonstrations, judging and big-day finishes with an award ceremony where teams hope to see their hard work pay off.

In a booklet provided by the UA College of Engineering, Jeff Goldberg, dean of the College of Engineering, describes Engineering Design Day as the best day of the year.

“This is the day when we show the world how engineers design solutions to societal problems and improve the quality of life,” he writes.

Goldberg also mentions how successful Engineering Design Day 2015 has been, describing how “[this] year we have more than 400 students majoring in various engineering disciplines demonstrating nearly 80 completely original engineering projects, some of which will go on to be commercial products.”

Ara Arabyan is an associate professor of aerospace and mechanical engineering.

“UA’s Interdisciplinary Engineering Design Program is one of the largest programs of its kind across the nation,” Arabyan said. “Engineering Design Day brings together and projects the Interdisciplinary Engineering Design Program, as well as capstone projects from the aerospace engineering, agricultural and biosystems engineering, chemical and environmental engineering, and civil engineering programs.”

The day’s events were held on the UA Mall and in the Student Union Memorial Center’s Grand Ballroom, featuring everything from a recycling lettuce wash water with ozone-injected mircobubbles to a smartphone-integrated gunlock. 

Michel Mora and Jose Luttmann, both mechanical engineering seniors graduating in December, worked with their sponsor, Honeywell, to develop an electromechanical shaft disconnect for generators.

Luttmann said throughout the design process, they used analysis by “going back to the books and busting out the equations to really understand mathematically what was going on.” Mora explained that their ultimate goal was to smoothly present the project and win awards, while Luttman added that he was looking to show off his team’s research.

“We’ve worked hard on this and like to see when people say, ‘Wow, that was cool,’” Luttman said.

After a long year of research, calculating and building, Mora said the best part of Engineering Design Day was seeing his colleagues and peers getting excited over something he and his team have worked hard on.

Arabyan said Engineering Design Day is a great way to showcase the creativity and engineering skills of UA students, not only to the public but to younger, aspiring engineers as well.

“Engineering Design Day represents the culmination of a year of work not only by hundreds of students, but also dozens of dedicated staff, mentors and faculty who all take pride in the outcome of these projects,” Arabyan said. “It is such a great pleasure to be in a place where this tremendous accomplishment is displayed in an exciting atmosphere.”


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