At the College of Engineering’s annual Celebration of Engineering Design Day held June 8, 2017, a freshman design team comprised of three Materials majors: Mark Petrovic, Kirsten Snodgrass, and Anna Desch, along with Jean-Luc Cassagnol and Mika Away, won Best of Freshman Design for their poster entitled “Exploring Thermal Expansion” describing their “Materials MacGyver” project.
The Celebration of Engineering Design Day includes senior design teams presenting solutions they have developed for engineering challenges they have researched and defined throughout the year, followed by a poster presentation session by senior design and freshman design teams. Faculty, students, and staff then vote for Best of Senior Design and Best of Freshman Design. The Best of Freshman Design first place award includes a cash prize of $2,000.
The winning Freshman Design team’s project aimed to design and create a simple, safe and highly visual model to demonstrate the concept of thermal expansion for use in classroom outreach and Drexel Experiences in Materials Outreach (DEMO) activities. The design included examples of thermal expansion of a solid metal using a ball and ring example, and of liquids using a bottle + graduated scale indicator. The underlying theory of expansion was studied, and a ball and spring model of an atomic arrangement was developed, along with data sheets that can be used in a school classroom environment.