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Interdisciplinary Engineering Design Course
John Callister & Marty Murtagh
NCIIA Conference
San Jose, California
March 21, 2014
Marty Murtagh
Material Sci.
Tobias Hanrath
Chemical Eng.
Rhett Weiss
Johnson School
John Callister
Mechanical Eng.
Cornell Engineering
Cornell Engineering
Acronyms
MSE = Material Science and Engineering
ChemE = Chemical Engineering
MAE = Mechanical Engineering
Background – Material Science at Cornell
• MSE had traditionally been focused on
preparing undergraduates for graduate school,
and on its graduate program
• But, some students went into industry after
getting their bachelors
• Employers noted that these students lacked
design skills
Background – Material Science at Cornell
Background – Material Science at Cornell
• Adjunct Professor Marty Murtagh, full-time
Corning Inc. engineer, was given the task of
updating the design courses in MSE.
• MSE 3070 Materials Design Concepts I
(junior level) and MSE 4070 Materials
Design Concepts II (senior level) were the
results of this.
Background – Material Science at Cornell
• While these courses were big
improvements, all of the
other MSE courses remained
very laboratory based
involving materials at small
scales.
• The students still tended to
have a lab rat approach.
Background – Chemical Engineering at Cornell
• Disclaimer: It is actually called the School of
Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering
• Recently, Professor Tobias Hanrath
introduced a new nanotechnology senior
product design class.
• Historically, the ChemE department had only
offered a senior process design class.
Background – Chemical Engineering at Cornell
Process Design
Background – Mechanical Engineering at
Cornell
• MAE does not have a senior capstone design
class.
• Seniors take add-on one-credit design
projects that are affiliated with courses.
• Or, seniors can take an independent design
project to fulfill this requirement.
• Students have to fill out the form….
Background – Mechanical Engineering at
Cornell
Background
• MSE has a new senior design class, but the
designs are a bit flat.
• ChemE has a new product design class, but
there was some dissatisfaction with it.
• MAE has a very flexible senior design
requirement, so one could quite easily extend
this to a new class, at least for awhile.
Background
• An anonymous
donor wants to fund
an interdisciplinary
design course or
program of some
kind.
• There are 7 digits in
the dollar number.
Interdisciplinary Design Course
• MSE students will provide the materialsenabled part of the design.
• ChemE students will be able to design a
large-scale process to make the new product
in quantity.
• MAE students will be able to help with CAD
and machining, as they learn this in the MAE
sophomore design class.
Interdisciplinary Design Course - Planning
• Can’t fit all the lectures on design AND the
business case material into one semester!
Interdisciplinary Design Course - Planning
• Solution: MBA Mentors! They will assist
students with the business case.
Interdisciplinary Design Course - Planning
•
•
•
•
MSE: “home” of the course
ChemE: cross-listed
MAE: cross-listed
Johnson: volunteer MBA mentors
Interdisciplinary Design Course - Planning
• MSE: most entrepreneurial department?
Interdisciplinary Design Course - Planning
• MSE: most entrepreneurial department?
Interdisciplinary Design Course – Course Design
• Form groups of five students
• Start the semester with 6 weeks of lectures
Lecture Topics
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
Innovation staging (1)
Design essentials (6)
Intellectual property (2)
Reliability (2)
House of quality (1)
Marketing overview (1)
Guest lectures (3)
– “Sustainability as guide to Product Development”
– “Theory of Inventive Problem Solving (TRIZ )”
– “The Startup Business Case”
(# of lectures)
Interdisciplinary Design Course – Course Design
• Case Study
• Each group studies an existing company and
reports on it.
• Focus is on innovation and intellectual
property.
26
Interdisciplinary Design Course – Course Design
• Startup Initiation Worksheet
• Each group proposes the product they will
design
• The scope of the invention is spelled out
clearly.
Interdisciplinary Design Course – Course Design
Interdisciplinary Design Course – Course Design
•
•
•
•
House of Quality
Each group surveys its target market
The voice of the customer is determined
This is used to find the product requirements.
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Interdisciplinary Design Course – Course Design
• Weekly Design Reviews
• Each group meets for 45 minutes (or more)
with faculty
• The objective is getting through the Level
One (proof of concept) and Level Two
(feasibility) gates
Innovation Staging
Innovation Product Development Hierarchy*
Decision Gate
I
Gather
Knowledge
R
II
Assess
Feasibility
R&D
III
Scrutinize
Utility
D&E
Startup focus
*Adapted from Corning Incorporated Global Innovation Effectiveness 2010
IV
Demonstrate
Profitability
E&M
V
Oversee
Life Cycle
M
Design Review
13 March 2013
Tesla Energy Systems
Justin Araway, Matt Boban,
Sophie Zhu, Nick Chartrain
Responsibilities
• Matt Boban: CTO
– Technology and IP
• Justin Araway: CFO
– Operations, Financial Projections, Supply Chain
• Sophie Zhu: CMO
– Market Research, Branding, Sales
• Nick Chartrain: CEO
– Business Plan, Putting it all Together
Design Gateway Level 1
• Market
– Customer Pull
– Problem customers experience is well defined
• Product
– IP position has been well researched, strategy not defined
– Product function has been well defined
• Process
– Process will be a vital part of our IP position
• Business Case
– Patent preferable to trade secret
– Has financial viability
Interdisciplinary Design Course – Outcomes
• Had 25 students, put into 6 groups.
• Not really enough MAE, ChemE students.
• None of the groups produced a working
prototype by the end of the semester.
• Progress was made by all.
• All groups followed the design process.
Interdisciplinary Design Course – Outcomes
Interdisciplinary Design Course – Outcomes
Interdisciplinary Design Course – Outcomes
• Process was a success
• It is difficult to get around roadblocks quickly
• There was a lot of pressure on the one MAE
student in each group to be really good at
CAD
• MBA mentors helped a great deal
• Student evaluations were very good
• Course is being taught this year…16 students
Interdisciplinary Design Course
• Q&A
• John Callister, [email protected]

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