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 teams of students were required to design and manufacture mechanisms that would thrill an audience of pre-collegiate students. The constraints imposed upon this assignment were that each mechanism must incorporate at least one linkage, one gear set and one cam-follower combination. These engineering marvels will be demonstrated, and displayed with a complementary poster explaining the subtleties of each mechanism. MSU College of Engineering, Design Day, 5/1/2015

These projects are on display during Design Day from 9:00 until noon in Room 1240  Engineering Building. The team with the best design, as voted on by pre-collegiate visitors, is awarded the Sparty Plaque.


In ME 471 Mechanical Design II students were challenged to design, build and test a refrigerator door with a non-circular hinge system that steers the door around a fixed obstacle when it is opened. This design helps meet the trends of modern kitchen design. In addition, the hinge and door system must be as light as possible and safely support a 50 pound load at multiple opening positions without significant door sag.

The competition is held in Room 1345 Engineering Building from 8:00 until 11:25. 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 compressed-air-powered Ranque-Hilsch vortex tube—a mechanical device with no power input that separates a single inflow of compressed air into two outflows: one hot and one cold. The goal is to minimize the temperature of the cold outflow while maximizing the temperature of the hot outflow. The vortex tube must be manufactured by the project team. To test each vortex tube, an air compressor will be used to provide the air inflow. There are no restrictions on the dimensions of the tube but the compressor will operate at a fixed setting. Temperatures of the hot and cold outflows will be measured. Each team will have 20 minutes to set up their vortex tube, the operation of which they must demonstrate for at least 10 minutes. Each team is required to prepare a YouTube video to be presented to the audience during the competition, which explains the device’s operation and the principles involved

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

This competition takes place in Room 1252 from 8:00 until 11:40 on Design Day. Please see the Design Day Booklet for information on the competition schedule.