Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Cooling Group Starts Testing

Today, the Computer Cooling group began to test their prototype to see if there were leaks anywhere in their system. They poured in the deionized water through the top, and using a small pump, they were able to run it through the system. It was discovered that so far, there are no leaks. They were also pleased to see that the fan was very quiet! They are now expecting to run a performance test on Monday.

Posted by Renee Martin

RPI Presentation

Today we had a run through of the RPI presentation. Aaron, Sam and Liam all did a really good job and with the few corrections the class offered they'll do really well! Next Wednesday we will be going to RPI to meet with other InvenTeams and to watch a grant presentation. We will also have the opportunity to speak with some of the professors and students at RPI. This will be a great chance for us to get suggestions and feedback on our projects!

Posted by Kelley Florence

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Keep Working Hard

"The only man who never makes a mistake is the man who never does anything." -Theodore Roosevelt
One of the most wonderful experiences in engineering and in life is making a mistake. Recently I have made a few mistakes, slowing our accomplishments but helping me none the less. Learning that the Maker-bot was not fully functioning after all our hard work was disheartening to say the least. Through examining each component of the machine to see if it was functioning we can learn a lot more about how 3D printing works. Narrowing down which part had complications led to the conclusion that the chip that allows the nozzle to heat up did not work. It was discouraging for me especially as Paige and I did most of the soldering on the part. This has allowed me to examine my techniques and learn what needs to be done differently. Even if I had successfully soldered the chip the first time by chance I would not have learned as much through that experience. Making a mistake really implants in your mind what needs to be done and how to do it correctly.

However, for every disappointment there is a triumph. The triumph of the week goes to the Campus Security group who has successfully accomplished a milestone in their work, making the app function perfectly.
Posted by Emma Rocco

Head of the Fish Plaques

Although we are not 100% sure that we have a deal with Head of the Fish, we still are taking steps to prepare for the job. Today after school we made a 3D model of the plaque in Autodesk Inventor. We plan to use this file and cut out a template on our CNC. To ensure uniformity in the roughly 150 plaques we have to cut out, sand, stain, engrave, and poly-coat each base. We have high hopes that we will get the job and if we get the go ahead, the wood shop will become a busy assembly line.

Posted by Will Fortin

One Milestone, One Setback for Computer Cooling

Today the Self-Contained Submersion cooling group completed work on one of two designs! We finished tapping threads into the 3D-Printed complex design, and assembled the base, pump, radiator, and fans into the case of a broken computer so leakage testing can begin next class.
Amid the joy of completing the initial assembly phase of one design though, came the heartbreak of finding out that another design needs an overhaul. The fittings we ordered to attach coolant tubes to our base were larger than we had accounted for, and as a result they did not fit on the simpler base that we had milled in class. This simple base design will need to be altered over the next few days before we can test it out.
-Post by Aaron Batker-Pritzker

Plotter Disassembling

Yesterday the Makerbot group took apart the plotter by removing all the uneccessary chips that we won't be using. We plan to use the x and y axes from the plotter and build the z axis on our own. These axes will eventually come together to make our own 3D Printer. The benefit of using the plotter will be to have a much larger build surface compared to what the Makerbot currently offers. We have a good handle on this project and look forward to making progress and creating a finished product of a new 3D Printer.
-Post by Celia D'Agostino

Friday, February 17, 2012

InvenTeam Co-op

We are very excited to form relations and interact with other Inventeams at different high schools. This past week, we skyped with the Berlin InvenTeam, and gave each other feedback and suggestions to our designs. Moving forward, we plan on assisting newer InvenTeams to the best of our ability, and sharing all that we have learned through our experiences in project lead the way classes.

-Post by Paige Waechter

February Break

The upcoming week is February vacation, so while we don't have class we'll still be working hard on our projects! The 3-D Printer group plans to meet to finish the 3-D printer and discuss plans for turning the 2-D plotter into a printer with a larger build area. The Campus Security group will also be meeting to work on their programming skills. A small group of the class is also going to meet to make plaques for the Head of the Fish, a crew race held locally, to raise funds for our team. Speaking of funds, I've recently updated the books; we have a total of a little under $3,000. So, we are still going to be looking for companies interested in investing in us so we have enough money to complete our projects and to leave a comfortable amount of money for next years team! Along with that, I will also be contacting our local Lion's Club and Rotary Club so we can increase our network.

-Post by Kelley Florence

Thursday, February 16, 2012

3D Printer Progress:

Today in class, the 3D printing group split up to work on separate tasks to optimize our time and move forward with the project as quickly as possibly. The Maker-bot is in it's final stages of wiring. Kelly, Sam, and Celia finished soldering all the necessary wires and it looks spiffy. It'll be up and running very soon and it will be great to see it print. Paige, Will, and I spent the class modifying a 2D plotter to prepare for the addition of a third axis and a new extruder nozzle making the plotter into a large 3D printer. We decided that taking the back panel off would allow us to turn the plotter on it's side for a great range of motion. This was no easy task as all the bolts and screws have rusted. Using many tool we did manage to remove the board and fully clean the dusty plotter frame. The two pictures show the circuitry of the x and y axis on the plotter and team mates Paige and Will holding the clean and modified frame.

- Post by Emma Rocco

The Self Contained Cooling Group Update

Today we achieved many small goals. We successfully tapped the practice holes we made, so we are fully confident in tapping aluminum. For steel we are not as confident so will have the local hardware store Allerdice do our 3d printed part. We also began the last finishing routine for the simple part. Lastly, we looked into alternate attachment methods while working to finish the program for the one we already designed.

-Post by Josh

Skype meeting with Berlin, New York

We had a skype meeting with another group of students participating in project lead the way this past Tuesday, February 16. Hopefully this is a sign of what's to come for the project lead the way students attending Saratoga Springs High School, and other high schools. Ideas could be exchanged between students with ease and it would make learning about engineering more comprehensive. Students would also have to learn to be able to speak in front of groups of strangers, which would also teach them important skills for their upcoming careers as engineers.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Elevator Pitch Review

Today, each of the 3 project groups presented the "elevator pitch" that they've been working on. An elevator pitch is basically a short, 2 minute video describing a problem, their solution, and why their solution would be effective.

John Howe and Aaron Batker Pritzker presented for the computer cooling group, Jeff Hrebenach presented for the firefighter notification app group, and Sam Hyatt and Kelley Florence presented for the 3D printer group.

Besides some minor presentation issues and technical problems, all pitches went relatively well.

Each group will have their pitch revised and finalized by this Friday.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Makerbot Nearing Completion

The 3D printing group is hard a work nearing completion of the makerbot. Thus far, the frame, as well as the extruding platform have been completed and assembled. We are hoping to finish the step-struder by the end of this week, and complete the makerbot soon after.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Students to Record Elevator Pitches

EDD students are currently working on creating and recording two-minute videos explaining our projects and the problems they solve. Called "elevator pitches," these short speeches are designed to emulate the kind of arguments we would present to investors if we had to convince them in only the time span covered by an elevator ride. Links to these videos will be provided as soon as they are done.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

A Minor Set Back

Recently, the air conditioning unit in our room had one of its pipe rupture. The room is being fixed and we are working in an alternate classroom. The room should be ready sometime next week.