Connecting Lab Experiments To A Design Project

Laura Genik, Craig Somerton
2009 Annual Conference & Exposition Proceedings   unpublished
Introduction A senior level heat transfer laboratory course incorporates a major design and build project competition which accounts for about 1/3 of the course. This project addresses the ABET Mechanical Engineering Program Criteria that requires graduates to possess the ability to design in the thermal engineering area. The remaining 2/3 of the laboratory course consists of standard thermal engineering experiments on such topics as thermocouples, convection, and power plants. A unique feature
more » ... of these standard experiments is the way in which they support the design project. With the variety of experiments available, the students run demonstration experiments that emphasize certain key features of the design project, such as geometry and heat transfer relations. This approach provides the students with a sense of continuity in the course and an understanding of problem solving in the experimental realm. This connectivity is further enhanced through the incorporation of a team building experiment that is a mini-version of the design project, which is conducted during one of the 2-hour lab periods early in the course. This paper presents the several different design projects that are used in the course and the supporting standard experiments for each of the projects. Resource implications for teaching a lab course in such a fashion are discussed. Finally, student feedback to this approach is analyzed.
doi:10.18260/1-2--5041 fatcat:lseft4rk6feulavybii7uf44iq