Undergraduate level course on modeling, design, integration and best practices for use of machine elements such as bearings, springs, gears, cams and mechanisms. Modeling and analysis of these elements is based upon extensive application of physics, mathematics and core mechanical engineering principles (solid mechanics, fluid mechanics, manufacturing, estimation, computer simulation, etc...). These principles are reinforced via a substantial design project wherein students model, design, fabricate and characterize a mechanical system that is relevant to a real world application. Students master the materials via problem sets/quizzes that are directly related to, and coordinated with, the deliverables of their project. Student assessment is based upon mastery of the course materials and the student's ability to synthesize, model and fabricate a mechanical device subject to engineering constraints (e.g. cost and time/schedule).
A major component of this course the design, fabrication, and assembly of remote control cars. Students use the knowledge gained in the lecture part of this course to design the structure, bearings, and drivetrains for their remote control cars. Students then build their cars in the UT makerspace. Periodic design review meetings are scheduled throughout the semester where students present designs and analysis for their car body, their drivetrains, and their steering mechanisms. At the end of the semester, students race their cars to determine which cars preformed the best and to see what effect their design choices have of the performance of the cars that they built.
Years: 2013, 2014