On the road or in the kitchen: Novel storage solutions top engineering design competition

Dec 18, 2012
On the road or in the kitchen: Novel storage solutions top engineering design competition
The Pendler is a durable, lightweight all-in-one commuter bicycling product that combines a carrying rack, light, fender and waterproof storage.

With a bicycle accessory that integrates several currently separate components, two University of Wisconsin-Madison mechanical engineering seniors won first place and $2,500 in the 2012 EMA/ME Design Competition, held December 12 on the UW-Madison engineering campus.

Joseph Maloney and Alex Cross developed The Pendler, a durable, lightweight all-in-one commuter bicycling product that combines a carrying rack, light, fender and waterproof storage.

Engineering mechanics and astronautics seniors Jennifer Hull, Aaron Riedel, Alex Schwartz, Kelly Scott and Peter Sweeney earned second place and $1,000 in the competition for the RotoRak, a customizable storage cabinet with rotating shelves that allow users easy access to items otherwise stored too high to reach. EMA seniors Ben Butler, Brent Kocken, Matt Mannebach, Matt Dhennin and Steve Wishau received the people's choice award of $500 for the Truck Trolley, a device that enables people to lift and load heavy objects easily into or out of a truck bed.

On the road or in the kitchen: Novel storage solutions top engineering design competition
RotoRak is a customizable storage cabinet with rotating shelves that allow users easy access to items otherwise stored too high to reach. 

The students were among seven teams of students enrolled in the engineering mechanics senior design (EMA 469) and mechanical engineering senior design (ME 349) courses who showcased products they designed and built throughout the fall 2012 semester. 

The competition, which also was broadcast live online, is intended to motivate high-quality, original design and reward students for hard work. In September 2012, each team chose an idea and spent the next three months developing, refining and building its solution.

UW-Madison engineering alumni Kathryn Clouse, Dustin Kaap and Ed Gisske judged the teams on the novelty of their idea, quality of their oral presentation, completeness of the design, market research, safety and compliance with codes or standards, drawings, written report and design notebooks, and prototype construction.

In addition to the winning entries, groups of students also presented the AutoShot, a soccer goalie practice device; the EvacuPac, a hiking backpack that converts into a stretcher; ReguFlate, a bicycle tire inflator that allows users to control the tire pressure; and Silver Sorter, a device for commercial kitchens that can sort large volumes of cutlery.

Mechanical Engineering and Engineering Physics Adjunct Professor Fred Elder coordinates the competition and says the senior course is an important milestone in the students' academic careers. "Each team worked hard and made good progress in that very important transition from student to engineering professional," he says. 

Explore further: Students take clot-buster for a spin

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Students focus on creating a better cervical collar

Apr 09, 2012

Undergraduate students at Rice University have come up with what they hope will prove to be a better and safer version of cervical collars to stabilize the heads and necks of accident victims. Cervical collars ...

Recommended for you

Students take clot-buster for a spin

24 minutes ago

(Phys.org) —In the hands of some Rice University senior engineering students, a fishing rod is more than what it seems. For them, it's a way to help destroy blood clots that threaten lives.

Finnish inventor rethinks design of the axe

5 hours ago

(Phys.org) —Finnish inventor Heikki Kärnä is the man behind the Vipukirves Leveraxe, which is a precision tool for splitting firewood. He designed the tool to make the job easier and more efficient, with ...

Lifting the brakes on fuel efficiency

Apr 18, 2014

The work of a research leader at Michigan Technological University is attracting attention from Michigan's Governor as well as automotive companies around the world. Xiaodi "Scott" Huang of Michigan Tech's ...

User comments : 0

More news stories

First steps towards "Experimental Literature 2.0"

As part of a student's thesis, the Laboratory of Digital Humanities at EPFL has developed an application that aims at rearranging literary works by changing their chapter order. "The human simulation" a saga ...

TCS, Mitsubishi to create new Japan IT services firm

India's biggest outsourcing firm Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) and Japan's Mitsubishi Corp said Monday they are teaming up to create a Japanese software services provider with annual revenues of $600 million.

Finnish inventor rethinks design of the axe

(Phys.org) —Finnish inventor Heikki Kärnä is the man behind the Vipukirves Leveraxe, which is a precision tool for splitting firewood. He designed the tool to make the job easier and more efficient, with ...

Meth mouth menace

Something was up in Idaho. While visiting a friend in Athol, a small town north of Coeur d'Alene, Jennifer Towers, director of research affairs at the Tufts University School of Dental Medicine, noticed ...