Undergraduate Labs

The Undergraduate Laboratories, occupying an area of approximately 6,000 square feet of floor space, are the site of experiments ranging in complexity from basic instrumentation and fundamental exercises to advanced experiments in such diverse areas as automatic controls, heat transfer, fluid mechanics, stress analysis, vibrations, microcomputer-based data acquisition, and control of mechanical systems.

Equipment includes microcomputers and microprocessors, analog-to-digital and digital-to-analog converters, lasers and optics for holography and interferometry, a laser-Doppler velocimetry system, a Schlieren system, dynamic strain indicators, a servohydraulic material testing machine, a photoelastic testing machine, an internal combustion engine, a dynamometer, subsonic and supersonic wind tunnels, a cryogenic apparatus, a computer numerically controlled vertical machine center (VMC), a coordinate measurement machine (CMM), and a rapid prototyping system. A CNC wire electrical discharge machine (EDM) is also available for the use of specialized projects for students with prior arrangement. The undergraduate laboratory also houses experimental setups for the understanding and performance evaluation of a complete, small, steam-power generation system; a heat exchanger; and a compressor. Part of the undergraduate laboratory is a staffed machine shop with machining tools such as standard vertical milling machines, engine and bench lathes, programmable surface grinder, bandsaw, drill press, tool grinders, and a power hacksaw. The shop also has a tig welder.

The Mechatronics Laboratory affords the opportunity for hands-on experience with microcomputer-embedded control of electromechanical systems. Facilities for the construction and testing of analog and digital electronic circuits aid the students in learning the basic components of the microcomputer architecture. The laboratory is divided into work centers for two-person student laboratory teams. Each work center is equipped with several power supplies (for low-power electronics and higher-power control), a function generator, a multimeter, a protoboard for building circuits, a microcomputer circuit board (which includes the microcomputer and peripheral components), a microcomputer programmer, and a personal computer that contains a data-acquisition board. The data-acquisition system serves as an oscilloscope, additional function generator, and spectrum analyzer for the student team. The computer also contains a complete microcomputer software development system, including editor, assembler, simulator, debugger, and C compiler. The laboratory is also equipped with a portable oscilloscope, an EPROM eraser (to erase microcomputer programs from the erasable chips), a logic probe, and an analog filter bank that the student teams share, as well as a stock of analog and digital electronic components.

The CAD Lab is a modern computer-aided design laboratory equipped with 30 Dell Precision 670/650 workstations with Wildcat 6100 or Quadro FX 3400 video cards. Machines have software for design, CAD, FEM, and CFD, including Pro Engineer, Maya, IDEAS, FLUENT, and FEMLAB.


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