You might run into a swarm of tiny robots, see a 3-D version of the future of television, examine a human-powered vehicle that can negotiate land, mud or water, or see how a SWAT team could use a new reconnaissance robot.
Regardless of what interests you – the unusual, functional, or creative – you’ll find plenty to see on Friday, May 15, at the popular 10th annual Engineering Expo at Oregon State University.
More than 100 student-built projects, representing OSU’s best undergraduate engineering talent, will be featured at the popular event at the Kelley Engineering Center on the OSU campus. The Expo exhibits will be on display from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., and the event is free and open to the public.
Also available this year will be tours of the O.H. Hinsdale Wave Research Laboratory, on the hour from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., and the newly renovated Kearney Hall, from 1-4 p.m. Visitors are also invited to the Kearney Hall grand opening celebration at 4:30 p.m. Parking is available in the OSU parking structure at 26th and Washington, with shuttle service to all the events.
These senior design projects featured at the Expo are the result of months of student work and a culmination of their engineering studies. Many of these projects are sponsored by business and government organizations in search of a solution to a particular problem. Students take what they’ve learned in years of classroom and laboratory instruction and work with their sponsors to turn that knowledge into functional new inventions.
All of the disciplines in OSU’s large and diverse College of Engineering are represented at the Expo, and a special exhibit in the Sustainability Showcase this year will focus on clean technology and “green” energy solutions. The Robo*Palooza event will include the TekBot Triathlon, OSU’s entry for this year’s Mars Rover Challenge, and FIRST robots from local high schools.
Among the many other displays and inventions at this year’s event:
• A “telebotic” arm control, a wearable machine that fits over your arm to provide robotic function;
• A new game teaches biology, where DNA is represented by ATCG building blocks;
• An interactive visualization tool is complete with National Football League statistics for drafting and managing a fantasy football team;
• A new operating room recycling process to reduce waste in hospitals, including Good Samaritan Hospital in Corvallis;
• A new system for laser welding polymer parts, for use in developing high-tech devices;
• A parachute that can be tossed out of an airplane with its payload and then navigated to a specific landing site.
~ Dave Stauth