CSU, Chico News

Mechanical Engineering Students Showcase Design Projects

Date: 05-17-2010

Joe Wills
Public Affairs

Students in mechanical engineering and mechatronic engineering showcased their year-long projects last week at the second annual Design Expo.

The 16 projects for 2010 included remote control vehicles, desalination systems and high-tech methods to plant crops and build homes made of straw. The May 11 event was a way for students to demonstrate how their projects work to classmates, faculty and sponsors.

Approximately 64 CSU, Chico students enrolled in a two-semester course sequence that involves completing a engineering design project.

The projects require students to create a solution to an engineering problem that meets certain requirements. Working in groups of three or four, the students first design the solution, then build a prototype and test it. Oral presentations, written reports and the Design Expo displays are required by each team’s faculty adviser.

Professor Ron Roth, chair of the Department of Mechanical Engineering, Mechatronic Engineering and Manufacturing Technology, said in past years some of the industry sponsors of projects have used either the students’ hardware or concepts.

“A lot of effort goes into these projects, and the results show it – that’s why employers love our students,” Roth said. “Teamwork, the ability to work with other people, is key. Plus the students have hands-on experience – they carry the design from idea to hardware.”

More information about the engineering design projects is available at http://www.ecst.csuchico.edu/srproject/.