Students from the UNLV Howard R. Hughes College of Engineering will put their undergraduate education to the test when they showcase year-long, commercially viable projects designed to solve everyday challenges at the spring 2011 Senior Design Competition.
Friday, May 13, from 9 a.m. - 3 p.m.
All projects will be on display for the duration of the event, with a scheduled break from 12:30 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Cox Pavilion Concourse at UNLV
The Senior Design Competition is free and open to the public. With thousands of dollars in prize money on the line, the competition introduces senior engineering students to the spirit of entrepreneurship and the benefits of commercial application. Local industry representatives judge projects developed by students in the electrical, mechanical and civil engineering departments.
Through a new partnership with UNLV College of Business, engineering and business students collaborate on business plans for the projects. The concept is that quality inventions, paired with solid business planning, could lead to new business growth in Nevada.
This semester boasts 17 projects including a solar-powered moped, a self-leveling tripod, a fire alarm notification system for the hearing impaired, smell-o-vision, and a pumping system used in tandem with solar power plants which, during low output periods, uses stored water to create inexpensive electricity.
A partial list of projects is outlined below. A complete list of all 17 projects will soon be available at engineering.unlv.edu
Selected Projects on Display
Solar-Assisted Moped (S.A.M.)
S.A.M. revolutionizes the concept of solar-powered travel by integrating lightweight metals, high-efficiency solar panels, and responsive controls to allow riders travel throughout the community with ease. Solar panels are hooked up to batteries that charge the moped when parked. Just slide the solar panels out, lock them in place, and be on your way.
Fire Alarm Notification and Detection
The fire alarm notification and detection system provides cheaper, yet more complete fire emergency notification for the hearing impaired. The system uses a home's existing indoor lighting to offer enhanced notification, while also automatically sending a text message to up to seven programmed users in the event a smoke or heat detector goes off.
Sunrise Mountain Pump Storage
Solar power has emerged as a viable - and sustainable - option to reduce the drain on the nation's electrical grid. But when the sun doesn't shine, pumped water can quickly generate inexpensive electricity to make up for solar's low-output periods. Pump storage uses cheap electricity at night - when user demand is low - to pump water into an upper reservoir that can be released through turbines during daylight hours.
The concept of smell-o-vision dates back nearly a century, but a reliable and functional product has never been developed. The synchronized odor mixing system uses heated scented oils to create a vapor that is released on demand by a smartphone. This system is designed for use in movie theaters, for targeted advertising, and even for aromatherapy.
The small unmanned autonomous aviation system (sUAS) is designed to retrofit existing remote control airplanes to fly steadily under their own control. The system can be used for research and military applications - or just for fun.
Electronic Beer Pong Table
The wonders of technology bring new excitement to a popular college pastime - beer pong. The electric beer pong table uses load cells to indicate changes in voltage when a ball hits the cup; infrared detectors are also engaged to detect when a player passes the edge of the table before taking a shot.