Aerospace Engineering – Rockets
With a primary focus on teaching computer aided design, flight dynamics, and systems engineering practices, students will work in groups to build and launch two rockets. The first rockets designed and produced will be computer modeled and 3D printed by teams of two students as they pass through the CAD focused first portion of the course. The high powered rockets will be roughly three feet in height, and constructed using materials chosen by the students. For the body tubes, students may opt to do a carbon fiber composite layup or use a kraft phenolic tube. As for the fins, students may use the Makerspace laser cutter to form fins out of plastic sheeting (ABS) or wood. They will also be allowed to 3D print fins if they wish to explore the benefits of fin air foiling. Nose-cone manufacturing will not have any commercial purchasing options, as students will be able to either print their final nosecones, or print a male/female mold which can then be overlayed with a fiberglass layup. Each team will receive one G or H class solid ammonium perchlorate motor, which will propel a well-built rocket to roughly 2,000 feet from an off-campus launch site reached during a day trip.
Aerospace Engineering – Planes
Students will be introduced to the basics of airplane engineering. Students work in teams to design and construct foam and 3D-printed fixed-wing aircraft to complete two missions. Students learn basic physics of aerodynamics, applications of MATLAB and Solidworks, how to use FOM charts to make design decisions, and manufacturing techniques. Test flights to ascertain flight stability, control properties, and airframe robustness drive design iteration. Planes will be flown on the UCLA campus.
Mechanical Engineering – GoKarts
This practical course aims to teach prospective engineers the thrill of a multi-discipline, end-to-end team-based engineering design. As with most large projects, they are broken into smaller cycles that will be solved independently, then integrated together. This project is constructed in such a way to optimize the student’s time in each step of preliminary design, Computer Aided Design, Finite Element Analysis, machining, detailing electric motor performance, and finally presenting their ideal Go-Kart. Students have creative freedom in the following areas: driver posture, steering and braking mechanisms, chassis layout and driver interface system. Over the course of the project students will learn how to give technical presentations and learn fundamental engineering concepts. At the end of the course, teams will participate in a competition where they will give a design presentation and drive their vehicle through a timed track. The presentation will allow students to consider their design process and consider ways in which they can be more efficient. The kart race provides the source of system goals for their go karts. The program’s design, build, test cycle will mimic working in a real-life, collaborative industry environment. Mentors will define the big picture and assist in removing impediments to progress.
Electrical Engineering – Rovers
Students use concepts and tools in mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, and computer science to design and build microcontroller controlled rovers under wireless command that are also able to autonomously navigate and respond to environmental cues. Students design and fabricate robot chassis, connect motors and control/sensory electronics, and program rover systems to map its environment and achieve mission objectives. Student team projects culminate in final competition including mapping and navigation through an unknown course and oral presentation.