ET Student Project Presentations and Expo at Palm Beach State College

On Nov 29, seven Palm Beach State College (PBSC) Engineering Technology (ET) program students who were enrolled in a special projects course during the 2022 fall semester made 5-minute presentations of their projects and demonstrated their projects to an audience open to the public. Each project started with the students creating design experiments to determine how they would approach the challenge they had selected. These “lightening round” style presentations of their work included an additional 30 minutes for the attendees to visit each of the student projects, also set up in the presentation room, for questions and demonstrations. Dr. Eva Suarez, Engineering Technology professor at PBSC mentored all the projects, some of which were sponsored by industry partners like Pratt Whitney, Printed Farms, and FLATE/FloridaMakes.

Expo attendees included most members of the Business Partner Council for the Engineering Technology Program at PBSC. Students interacted directly with Council members and had a chance to show what they did as well as how their system worked to produce answers to the questions they had set out to answer. The whole event represents a great way to showcase student success as well as have students continue to practice skills learned in the program and demonstrate those skills to the college’s industry partners. Congratulations to all the students and to Dr. Suarez for mentoring them through the process.

The student presentations and demonstrations were amazing! Their projects included: 
  • Determining the drag coefficient of waxed and unwaxed surfboards; 
  • Measuring pressure in a wind tunnel with pitot tubes; 
  • Using Geometric Dimensioning and Tolerance (GD&T) to check form and fit of a 3-D printed assembly; 
  • Developing a vehicle that would respond to hand motions; 3-D printing concrete (or a surrogate for concrete); and 
  • Using a LIMS (Learning Integrated Manufacturing System) Edge computing device to collect data for a 3-D printing task under various environmental conditions (different bed temperatures and room humidity) and then determine the effects on production rates. 
Each of these projects provided practical learning experiences that also generated situations where they learned to: develop an organized their project; persevere when they ran into limitations of materials, equipment, and time; and display, present, and explain their projects.

Mary Ngo - PBSC LIMS Edge Device Project
PBSC was one of four colleges and one university (College of Central Florida, Hillsborough Community College, Palm Beach State College, Polk State College, and the University of South Florida) that participated in FLATE’s LIMS Edge Device pilot program supported by: FloridaMakes, a mini grant from America Works, and technical support from Advanced Manufacturing International (AMI) and LECS (developer of the LIMS Edge Device). FloridaMakes donated a LIMS to each of the five colleges and the mini grant, awarded by America Works, provided funds for sensors and small peripheral equipment. The college faculty and at least one student developed a project that incorporated the LIMS to learn how to set and use the device for data collection and analysis in an industrial application. The project’s student participants took full advantage of the technical support provided by AMI and LECE.

The PBSC LIMS Edge Device project was done by student Mary Ngo, who was very interested in collecting and analyzing data. The 3-D printing challenge was to create coupons for tensile testing. She printed several runs of coupons under several different humidity environments and temperatures. Mary set up the 3-D printer to send data to the LIMS Edge device. Data was successful captured and analyzed prior to the expo and presentation. Final project testing results will be submitted in her project’s report. We will share more about all the LIMS projects in coming issues of the FLATE Focus in 2023.

Click here to watch a video of Capstone Engineering Technology Student Mary Ngo showcasing her fall 2022 Capstone Project on Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS).