Congratulations to Team 1463 for winning the Ventana Award for Innovation in Engineering at Engineering Design Day 2015!
The project was to design, manufacture and test fly an unmanned aerial vehicle with vertical takeoff and landing capabilities. Rincon Research Corp. wanted to develop a drone with the purpose of providing surveillance information for Sabino Canyon.
"It was a huge learning experience; since I was team lead, I learned a lot about being in charge," said May 2015 graduate and aerospace engineering major Steven Rishor. "I was able to keep up the team's morale and the pace of the project. Time was a big priority on this project because we had to build it from scratch."
In a departure from specs provided for other projects on Engineering Design Day, the team was given a mission profile, with no existing design for the VTOL which the team could model after.
The mission was to vertically take off and fly to a location four miles away, cruise around in a half-square mile, flying at an altitude of 500 feet and then return within 30 minutes.
“We were having a problem with the center of gravity, which was interfering with the quad copter. Whenever it took off, it would want to divert to the aft section, so it would go straight backwards,” said Rishor.
Professor Sergey Shkarayev mentored the project from his research on fluid structure interactions and unmanned aerial vehicles design.
Team member Rita Ezeugwu, who also majored in aerospace engineering, says that she spent most of her time at the University at the AME building just north of campus. “Dr. Shkarayev made us practice in front of him because he wanted us to know how to communicate with the judges and answer any questions that might come up,” said Ezeugwu. She will be travelling to Europe this summer for two weeks before she starts her new job at Honeywell as a project design engineer. “I interviewed with them right after Design Day."
Rishor was hired by Boeing in Oklahoma. He offered the following advice for future students in the senior design program: "I have done homework with other people, but the senior design project is working with people through hard times. Sometimes you might have an argument with your teammates and you just have to work through it and be patient with them ... Work diligently, and continue to try your best. To future students, I hope that they work on something they are passionate about. When the judges see that you were deeply passionate about your work, they take that into account."
Project: Sabino Canyon VTOL UAV
Team 1463 Members:
Sponsor: Rincon Research Corp.
Mentor: Sergey Shkarayev