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  • Undergraduate Poster Abstracts
  • Mechanical Engineering

    THU-749 DEVELOPMENT OF A LABVIEW-BASED DATA ACQUISITION SYSTEM TO TEST A COPPER-BASED MINICHANNEL COLLECTOR IN STEAM GENERATION MODE

    • Keith Saechao ;
    • Paulo Jerimias ;
    • Van Duong ;
    • Gerardo Diaz ;

    THU-749

    DEVELOPMENT OF A LABVIEW-BASED DATA ACQUISITION SYSTEM TO TEST A COPPER-BASED MINICHANNEL COLLECTOR IN STEAM GENERATION MODE

    Keith Saechao1, Paulo Jerimias2, Van Duong1, Gerardo Diaz1.

    1University of California, Merced, Merced, CA, 2Universidad Federal de Santa Catarina, Florianopolis, BR.

    There have been many researchers and scientists who have helped further advance the design and applications of solar collectors, but few have considered the use of minichannel tubes in solar collectors. Proposed in 2008, this collector design has been manufactured and tested at the University of California, Merced, for operation in single phase and steam generation modes. Our objective was to generate steam and determine the steam generation rate of these collectors. Experimental tests were conducted to accurately measure and record the inlet and outlet temperatures of the collector, ambient temperature, operating pressures, flow rates, and solar irradiance. Prior to this project, an aluminum-based minichannel solar collector was designed, manufactured, and tested by Diaz’s group using a LabVIEW-based data acquisition system to record the set of variables needed and to control the operation of the solar water-heater system. Operation in steam generation mode required the development of new LabVIEW-based data acquisition software to measure and record operating variables that are relevant in 2-phase flow conditions. A new data-acquisition tool was developed for this project, and the results of our project showed the collector was able to generate steam at a rate between 2.4 - 2.8 g/min, with outlet steam temperatures near 106 °C at solar irradiance levels of 820 W/m2, operating pressures near 460 kpa, and a water flowrate of 10.2 L/min. The data collected is being used to calculate the thermal efficiency of steam generation.

    THU-741 PROPERTY CHARACTERIZATION OF STEAM-ACTIVATED BIOCHAR

    • Jose Rubalcava-Cruz ;
    • Sergio Pineda ;
    • Gerardo Diaz ;

    THU-741

    PROPERTY CHARACTERIZATION OF STEAM-ACTIVATED BIOCHAR

    Jose Rubalcava-Cruz, Sergio Pineda, Gerardo Diaz.

    University of California, Merced, Merced, CA.

    Activated carbon is usually used in filtration systems for air and water pollutants. The main source of activated carbon is coconut shells that are converted to biochar and then to activated carbon through industrial-scale application of high-temperature steam. Since this product is usually imported, it is estimated that $2 billion are spent in a year purchasing this product. This project intends to find out if biochar from local biomass can be activated producing properties similar to the commercially available activated carbon. The conversion of biochar to activated carbon was performed using a reactor designed specifically for this purpose at the University of California, Merced. The operating conditions of the steam-reforming reactor were determined by means of a series of tests with air and steam that determined parameters such as flow rate, operating temperature, and weight loss of the biochar sample. The flow rate of the steam was determined by using an orifice-tube configuration that was calibrated using air and steam as working fluids. The resultant activated carbon was compared with commercial grade activated carbon to determine its porosity, surface area, and fixed carbon. Using an electron microscope, the activated carbon produced with the reactor operating at low temperatures near 250 °C showed the formation of larger pores compared to that of the commercial-grade activated carbon.

    FRI-749 MECHANICALLY LIGHTWEIGHT TENSEGRITY SYSTEMS

    • Alejandra Martinez ;
    • Michael Tolley ;

    FRI-749

    MECHANICALLY LIGHTWEIGHT TENSEGRITY SYSTEMS

    Alejandra Martinez, Michael Tolley.

    University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, CA.

    Mechanically light tensegrity systems have typically been used in the scientific community to observe forces that satisfy configuration and equilibrium in the systems. However, connecting rigid bodies to tensile bodies has been typically conducted with metal wire and rods, which can be tedious and complex to manufacture. Therefore, we report the development of an alternative tensegrity system that is easily manufactured and can hold twice its original weight. Cardboard and polyethylene were manufactured in a layered function which allows the tensegrity system to transition from a 2-dimensional (2D) to a 3-dimensional (3D) system. Various software designs including different materials, geometries, and configurations were also tested using AutoCAD and evaluated for thoroughness. The results of this research will give support to tensegrity systems that simplify the manufacturing process. This has application in large scale self-assembly processes, for example, NASA tensegrity robots.

    FRI-739 INVESTIGATION OF THE MECHANICAL AND SHAPE MEMORY PROPERTIES OF POLYMER FIBERS FOR AN ARTIFICIAL, MUSCLE-BASED HEALING-ON-DEMAND COMPOSITE

    • Jerry Martinez ;
    • Pengfei Zhang ;
    • Guoqiang Li ;

    FRI-739

    INVESTIGATION OF THE MECHANICAL AND SHAPE MEMORY PROPERTIES OF POLYMER FIBERS FOR AN ARTIFICIAL, MUSCLE-BASED HEALING-ON-DEMAND COMPOSITE

    Jerry Martinez1, Pengfei Zhang2, Guoqiang Li3.

    1Pomona College, Claremont, CA, 2Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA, 3Southern University and A & M College, Baton Rouge, LA.

    Engineering polymers are designed for a specific service life, but with degradation over time, the lifespan tends to be shortened. As a result, materials that can self heal have become a popular area of study. Healing-on-demand composites are a current solution to this issue. They have the ability to close crack deformations with the aid of an external stimulus. In this study, we tried to improve a polymer, artificial, muscle-based healing-on-demand composite by finding a polymer fiber with improved mechanical and shape-memory properties. In our experiment, we tested 3 fishing line polymer fibers: nylon 6; nylon 6,6; and polyethylene (PE) and ionomer fiber. We tested the tensile strength of each of these fibers and found that nylon 6 and nylon 6,6 exhibited the greatest stress before break, with a break value at around 800 MPa. We also conducted thermoanalytical tests to determine the glass transition temperatures (Tg) and melting temperatures (Tm) of our fibers. Fibers were hot programmed to predetermined strains, and free-shape recovery tests were conducted on each of the programmed fibers. We found that nylon 6,6 had large shape recovery at strains above its yield point (35%) and that ionomer had the highest recorded shape recovery hovering around 70%. Tests are currently being conducted to find the fixed stress recovery of our programmed fibers. We hope to use our results to improve the efficiency of the shape-memory artificial muscles in our composite materials.

    THU-739 ENGINEERING THERMAL PROPERTIES OF POROUS MATERIALS WITH NANOPARTICLES

    • Mouhamad Said Diallo ;
    • Ganesh Balasubramanian ;

    THU-739

    ENGINEERING THERMAL PROPERTIES OF POROUS MATERIALS WITH NANOPARTICLES

    Mouhamad Said Diallo1, Ganesh Balasubramanian2.

    1Des Moines Area Community College, Ames, IA, 2Iowa State University, Ames, IA.

    Porous materials are described as materials that have holes in them, making their thermal conductivity very low. Thermal conductivity is the ability of a material to conduct heat. Although the low thermal conductivity of porous materials makes them good thermal insulators, we want to know if there is a way to enhance that thermal property. Other researches have tried to study the thermal properties of porous materials and have come to a conclusion that the existence of pores in them makes their thermal conductivity low. In order to study the increase of thermal conductivity, we mixed metallic nanoparticles with a porous material in order to make the nanoparticles fill the pores, increasing the thermal conductivity of the system. As a result, we noticed an increase in the thermal conductivity of the mixture: aluminum nanoparticle and diatomaceous earth. Several explanations can be provided, but the most obvious is that the nanoparticles are filling the pores between the diatomic frustules. The filling of the pores plays a big role by increasing overall thermal conductivity. Although we have given explanations of our results, more analytical work is needed to support the experimental results.

    FRI-740 MEASUREMENT AND CALIBRATION OF CENTRIFUGAL COMPRESSOR PRESSURE SCANNING INSTRUMENTATION

    • Jose Rivas-Padilla ;
    • Fangyuan Lou ;
    • Herbert Harrison ;
    • Nicole Key ;

    FRI-740

    MEASUREMENT AND CALIBRATION OF CENTRIFUGAL COMPRESSOR PRESSURE SCANNING INSTRUMENTATION

    Jose Rivas-Padilla, Fangyuan Lou, Herbert Harrison, Nicole Key.

    School of Mechanical Engineering, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN.

    The compressor is a key component of a jet engine necessary to compress air for the combustion process. Research to optimize compressor efficiency through the understanding of air flow behavior has led to increased efforts in creating modern compressor test facilities. In collaboration with Honeywell, the High Speed Compressor Laboratory at Purdue University built a centrifugal compressor test cell with instrumentation to measure the temperatures and pressures of the air flow. This facility conducts experiments to characterize compressor performance at varying conditions. During prolonged experimentation cycles, it is difficult to acquire reliable pressure measurements of the flow, as pressure sensor drift increases the uncertainty of measurements over time. Pressure scanners must be calibrated periodically to maintain reliability, and these calibration services are costly. To reduce cost, a pressure calibration process was automated with the use of a CPC6000 pressure calibrator. LabVIEW visual instrument (VI) software was developed to interface with the calibrator and the Digital Sensor Array (DSA) pressure scanners. The CPC6000 determines the calibration range, and the VI software uses the calibrated pressure to overwrite the calibration coefficients of the DSA. The DSA was calibrated to measure pressures within 0.05% of full-scale measurement. Automating the calibration process will reduce the cost of periodic calibration by an external resource. It will also maintain repeatability in the uncertainty of the measurements through testing cycles that last beyond the 6-month guaranteed calibration period of the manufacturer.

    FRI-742 MACHINING DISTORTION IN QUENCHED ALUMINUM PARTS

    • Susana Ramirez Perez ;
    • Destiny Garcia ;
    • Barbara Linke ;
    • Michael Hill ;

    FRI-742

    MACHINING DISTORTION IN QUENCHED ALUMINUM PARTS

    Susana Ramirez Perez, Destiny Garcia, Barbara Linke, Michael Hill.

    University of California, Davis, Davis, CA.

    Dimensional instability, a deviation from desired part dimensions, is a critical problem in manufacturing. The causes of dimensional instability, or distortion, are forces applied during machining and residual stresses in the material. Given the desire for high weight-to-strength ratios in parts, aluminum is a preferred material used in the aerospace industry. This experiment focuses on the distortion of 7061 multipurpose aluminum in comparison to 7050 quenched aluminum. Aluminum is a light material, and the process of quenching strengthens its properties. In order to observe the distortion in the 2 materials, blanks of the same dimensions are machined into U prismatic-shaped parts. Then, using a Taylor/ Hobson Talyscan 250, a plane is created to compare the distortion of the part before and after machining. Quenched aluminum has higher amounts of residual stresses and, therefore, it is expected to have higher levels of distortion than multipurpose aluminum. The results of the experiment will provide an analysis of the advantages and disadvantages of quenched aluminum in comparison to multipurpose aluminum through the study of machining distortion in each material. The overall goal of the research is to minimize distortion so manufacturers can provide parts with better quality and higher strength at lower costs.

    FRI-743 CRASHWORTHINESS OF UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLES AND METHODS OF IMPROVEMENT

    • Andres Carrillo III ;
    • Selahattin Ozcelik ;

    FRI-743

    CRASHWORTHINESS OF UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLES AND METHODS OF IMPROVEMENT

    Andres Carrillo III, Selahattin Ozcelik.

    Texas A&M University-Kingsville, Kingsville, TX.

    Given the popularity of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), also referred to as drones in the civilian market, the demand for innovation is increasing at a high rate for the hobby drone industry. However, instances occur during operation when drones crash causing severe damage to expensive and vital equipment such as microcontrollers, cameras, and batteries. Research regarding crashes will provide different methods that are proven more efficient in crash protection systems for future use in drone designs. By designing an attached structure composed of engineering materials (thermoplastics, non-Newtonian fluids, or polymer composite materials) to specified positions on a drone, we plan to reduce the effects of destroying internal vital and expensive equipment during a crash. This study compared prior research involving high velocity impact resistance and shock absorption using engineering materials in CAD software to simulate collision scenarios in order to design an alternate, more effective, method to protect drones when crashing. Materials such as ABS plastic, PVC, PLA resin, CPVC, natural rubber, PVC rigid, and polyester resin went through simulations where different forces were applied at ranges up to 30-N to study the effects of the force exerted on the material. Data analysis revealed that ABS plastic and PVC rigid stress, displacement, and strain simulation values behaved similarly high suggesting a composite material of the 2 would be sufficient for crash protection. Further research could potentially uncover numerous variations of composite materials that would be effective in providing crash protection of drones.

    THU-748 UPDATE OF THE EPOXIDATION OF C60 WITH M-CHLOROPEROXYBENZOIC ACID

    • Melvin Lorenzo ;
    • Kamran Ghiassi ;
    • Alan Balch ;

    THU-748

    UPDATE OF THE EPOXIDATION OF C60 WITH M-CHLOROPEROXYBENZOIC ACID

    Melvin Lorenzo, Kamran Ghiassi, Alan Balch.

    University of California, Davis, Davis, CA.

    Preparation of C60On peroxides have been achieved through means of ozonolysis, photooxygenation, and other chemical processes such as reaction with methyltrioxorhenium-hydrogen peroxide, a metal system capable of oxidizing arenes. Here, we report the inaccuracy of chemical profiling for the reaction of C60 with m-chloroperoxybenzoic acid (mCPBA). High-pressure liquid chromatography (HPLC) chromatograms of mobile phases with eluents of toluene, 1:1 toluene:hexanes, 1:1 toluene:n-pentane, and 1:1 toluene:n-heptane indicate a formation of possible fullerene oxides, but separation was not possible suggesting a possible error within the literature procedure. Furthermore, changes in parameters of column pressure, wavelength of detection, and flow rate were individually varied. Although these variations slightly increased separation, literature results were not achieved.

    FRI-741 AN EVALUATION OF QUADRATIC AND BILINEAR INTERPOLATION PROCEDURES ON A QUADTREE DATA STRUCTURE

    • Newton Nguyen ;
    • Arthur Guittet ;
    • Frederic Gibou ;

    FRI-741

    AN EVALUATION OF QUADRATIC AND BILINEAR INTERPOLATION PROCEDURES ON A QUADTREE DATA STRUCTURE

    Newton Nguyen1, Arthur Guittet2, Frederic Gibou2.

    1University of California, Berkeley, Berkeley, CA, 2University of California, Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara, CA.

    By tracking the 0-contour of a moving boundary through the level set method, changing boundary problems can be solved numerically. This includes problems applied to multiphase flows, compressible flows, and image processing. In this study, the level set method is computed over an adaptive 2-dimensional mesh using the quadtree data structure; octrees are used in 3 spatial dimensions. In studies of moving boundaries, the quadtree and octree meshes are refined such that a finer resolution is located near the boundary. In this study, a function f(x,y) = sin(x)cos(y) is represented over a square domain from 0 to 2π by sampling its values at the nodes of the quadtree. Because the mesh is discrete, it is necessary to design interpolation procedures in order to provide a smooth description of the function. Two different interpolation methods are considered in this study: the bilinear piecewise interpolation and the Lagrange quadratic interpolation. We generated 1,000 randomized points in the domain and interpolated. The root-mean-squared error was then computed. The procedure was repeated with increasing resolutions to find the following conclusions:  the bilinear piecewise interpolation is 2nd-order accurate, and the Lagrange quadratic interpolation is 3rd-order accurate.

    THU-743 IMPACT-TESTING THE INTEGRITY OF 6-STRUT TENSEGRITIES

    • Kimberley Fountain ;
    • Lee-Huang Chen ;
    • Alice Agogino ;

    THU-743

    IMPACT-TESTING THE INTEGRITY OF 6-STRUT TENSEGRITIES

    Kimberley Fountain, Lee-Huang Chen, Alice Agogino.

    University of California, Berkeley, Berkeley, CA.

    Tensegrity robots are a revolutionary generation of soft robotics, designed to operate safely and effectively alongside humans. For space exploration purposes, these robots have a much better chance at confident landing than traditional robots. Due to the natural compliance and structural force distribution properties of tensegrity structures, these robots are able to absorb significant forces upon impact, making them an effective replacement for traditional space rovers. Designing the first controlled drop test for tensegrity robots will further improve the framework of these structures and develop an optimized means of observation of their behavior upon impact, allowing for recognition of opportunities for improvements for subsequent versions of the robot. The design focus of this study was on testing 6-rod tensegrity structures, but the design will be modular for developing and testing other tensegrity structures. Video analysis and motion tracking tools were used to perform detailed falling and impact analyses of the structure deformation and center of gravity during drop tests. By observing the results of the structural deformation per height drop upon different surfaces, scientists and engineers will be able to build a superior 6-strut tensegrity robot for planetary exploration.

    THU-742 LINEARIZATION OF MOVEMENT AND IMPROVEMENT OF MANUFACTURING TECHNIQUES FOR PNEUMATICALLY OPERATED SOFT-ROBOTIC ACTUATORS

    • Alexander Alvara ;
    • Huichan Zhao ;
    • David Khan ;
    • Robert Shepherd ;

    THU-742

    LINEARIZATION OF MOVEMENT AND IMPROVEMENT OF MANUFACTURING TECHNIQUES FOR PNEUMATICALLY OPERATED SOFT-ROBOTIC ACTUATORS

    Alexander Alvara1, Huichan Zhao2, David Khan3, Robert Shepherd2.

    1Henry Samueli School of Engineering, University of California, Irvine, Irvine, CA, 2Sibley School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY, 3School of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY.

    The necessity for controlled directional actuation in high force soft robotic actuators is addressed in this research. In order to facilitate the linearized control of motion for pneumatically operated rubber actuators, the direction of non-necessary movement must be constrained. By implementing a strain limiting layer in these non-necessary areas of the actuation, all motion in those directions is restrained to minimal, or to zero, inflation. In addition to restricting the motion of the actuators, the implementation of the mesh serves several improvements. These improvements include that of manufacturing consistency and, by allowing the viscous material to adhere to the mesh, a more consistently made and durable actuator can be produced. The results show a more than 2-fold increase in strength at lower pressures of actuation over currently available pneumatically operated soft robotic actuators. This lower pressure of actuation provides a more mobile device that is not constrained by the bulk of large pressurized tanks. Some possible uses include that of prosthetic hands. (Patent pending; data not finished.)

    FRI-744 PHYSICAL PROPERTIES OF MULTI-SOLITON SOLUTIONS TO THE KADOMTSEV-PETVIASHVILLI EQUATION

    • Angel Paucar ;
    • Rey Andrade-Flores ;
    • Alicia Machuca ;

    FRI-744

    PHYSICAL PROPERTIES OF MULTI-SOLITON SOLUTIONS TO THE KADOMTSEV-PETVIASHVILLI EQUATION

    Angel Paucar, Rey Andrade-Flores, Alicia Machuca.

    University of St. Thomas, St. Paul, MN.

    The Kadomtsev-Petviashvilli (KP II) equation is a nonlinear partial differential equation that can be used to model shallow-water waves. We used a recently developed method to construct a large class of multisoliton solutions to the KP II equation. These multisoliton solutions consist of solitary waves that maintain their velocity and direction while far apart but react nonlinearly when colliding with another solitary wave. This multisoliton formula depends on a quadruplet of matrices: A, M, B, and C with sizes n x n, n x n, n x 1, and 1 x n, respectively. The focus of this project was to investigate these matrices and their relationship to the physical properties of these multisoliton solutions. We have found certain conditions on A, M, B, and C that can determine the velocity and direction of these solitary waves. To illustrate our results we used the software Mathematica to animate the soliton waves.

    THU-744 IMPLEMENTING MICROFLUIDICS AND SURFACE-ENHANCED RAMAN SPECTROSCOPY IN THE DETECTION OF PAPAVERINE

    • Kristine Lai ;
    • Rustin Mirsafavi ;
    • Carl D. Meinhart ;
    • Martin Moskovits ;

    THU-744

    IMPLEMENTING MICROFLUIDICS AND SURFACE-ENHANCED RAMAN SPECTROSCOPY IN THE DETECTION OF PAPAVERINE

    Kristine Lai, Rustin Mirsafavi, Carl D. Meinhart, Martin Moskovits.

    University of California, Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara, CA.

    The papaverine molecule is found in opium poppy latex, which is the precursor to illicit drugs like opium and heroin. Being able to detect papaverine in the saliva or urine of drug traffickers and producers is beneficial for drug enforcement agencies. Flow-focusing microfluidics and surface enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) have been used to detect trace amounts of methamphetamine in saliva. Using this system, we hypothesize that it would be possible to detect larger molecules like papaverine. Silver nanoparticles (AgNPs), salt (LiCl), and papaverine are run through the flow-focusing microfluidic device, which causes the silver to aggregate and, when interrogated with a laser, the SERS signal is observed. Using 20 nm AgNPs, we performed a salt concentration study by varying the salt concentration from 0 to 50 mM by increments of 10 mM. Preliminary results showed that using 20 through 40 mM LiCl yielded the best Raman signals. For the deionized water, there was little or no aggregation and therefore no signal. Using 50 mM LiCl led to over-aggregation, which decreased the Raman signal. All of our experiments used a relatively high concentration of papaverine, 1,000 ppm. Future experiments will involve lower concentrations of papaverine to determine the lowest detectable concentration. These results show that SERS is a sensitive and elegant system for detecting papaverine.