Mechanical Engineering

Non-Capstone Projects

In addition to the ME 481 Senior Capstone class, there are four design courses required of all Mechanical Engineering majors. Three of those courses participate in Design Day. For the complete competition schedules, please see the Design Day Booklet.

In ME 371 Mechanical Design I students are required to design and manufacture mechanisms that incorporate at least one linkage, one gear set and one cam-follower combination.

MSU College of Engineering, Design Day, 5/1/2015

These projects are on display during Design Day from 9:00 until noon in Gold Rooms A and B Second Floor. The team with the best design, as voted on by pre-collegiate visitors, is awarded the Sparty Plaque.


Students in ME 471 Mechanical Design II were challenged to design, build and test prototype device for moving a 10 lb. weight along a particular path. The device must be manually operated by one person, and should satisfy several competing goals.

An optimization study is required to achieve an optimum balance among the following goals:

  • Minimize mass
  • Minimize cost (per unit, assuming 10,000 unitswill be produced)
  • Meet path constraints in the loaded and unloadedstate (kinematics and stiffness)
  • Meet failure constraints (static and fatigue)
  • Meet marketing constraints (integrate the product logo into the design)The total performance of each design is measured in terms of a weighted sum of these normalized objectives and constraints.

The competition is held in Balloom Second Floor from 8:00am until 11:30am. Please see the Design Day Booklet for information on the competition schedule.


In ME 456 Mechatronics Systems Design the students were challenged to develop, test, and demonstrate an innovative design for a commercial product that synthesizes mechanical, electrical, electronic, thermal and/or fluid components with an imbedded microcontroller. Typical applications range from automotive engine controls and robotic manufacturing systems to toys and consumer appliances such as microwave ovens. Each group will make a 20-minute presentation and demonstration of a working prototype of their product.

The competition is held in Lake Superior Room Third Floor from 8:00am until 9:40am. The winning team receives the Leonardo da Vinci Machine Design Award. Please see the Design Day Booklet for information on the competition schedule.


The ME 412 Heat Transfer Laboratory project is to design, model, build, and test

a heat transfer device to enhance
the defrost process as realized by the energy transfer to melting ice. The device may have
an active energy input, e.g. batteries or wall electricity, but the amount of active energy provided will be subtracted from the melting ice energy. To remain in context with the above described device, the ice may not be modified in any manner. The device must also begin at room temperature. The project team is to consist of no more than three students.

MSU College of Engineering, Design Day, 5/1/2015

This competition takes place in the Ballroom, Second Floor from 9:00am until 11:30am on Design Day. Please see the Design Day Booklet for information on the competition schedule.