Master Course Description

No: EE 401

Title: Engineering Design by Teams: Robotics I

Credits: 4

UW Course Catalog Description

Coordinator: Alexander Mamishev, Assistant Professor of Electrical Engineering

Goals: To learn techniques of engineering creativity, teamwork, mentoring, and product design.

Learning objectives: At the end of this course students will be able to:

  1. Apply techniques of enhancing engineering creativity and design process
  2. Explain and implement various aspects of high-tech company operation, including organization, project management, intellectual property, human resources, and team dynamics.
  3. Critically evaluate designs of competitive devices from national contests
  4. Demonstrate machine shop certification and basic experience.
  5. Solve basic problems in the fields of electromechanical design
  6. Apply basic mentoring and management skills.

Textbook: K. Otto and K. Wood, Product Design, Prentice Hall, 2001

Reference texts: Genrich Altshuller, The Innovation Algorithm: TRIZ, Systematic Innovation and Technical Creativity
Genrich Altshuller, 40 Principles: TRIZ Keys to Technical Innovation
T. Kelley, J. Littman, The Art of Innovation

Prerequisites by Topic:

  1. Circuit theory
  2. Calculus
  3. Introduction to differential equations

Class topics:

  1. Lectures and exercises with creativity techniques for concept development including, but not limited to, brainstorming, mind mapping, morphological analysis, pilot questions, synectics, analogy, biomimetics, TIPS (Theory of Inventive Problem Solving), and vector-field analysis.
  2. Theory and techniques of team-building and project planning (Gantt charts, financing, cost analysis). Project management activities.
  3. Concept selection (feasibility, criteria, ranking, iteration of solutions)
  4. Working with technical literature: forward and reverse avalanches, multi-parallel search, patent search and analysis
  5. High-tech industry aspects: S-curves, transilience matrix,
  6. Invited lectures from local high-tech start-ups
  7. Robotics design: prototyping, drive train, motor selection, power requirements (400R only)
  8. Machine shop certification (may be optional), electrical wiring
  9. Review of videos and animations from national and international design contests
  10. Overview of technical and entrepreneurial opportunities at UW and beyond, including E-teams, business plan competitions, undergraduate research, and national engineering competitions.

Course structure: The class meets for two lectures a week, each consisting of two 50-minute sessions. There is weekly homework due. There are an in-class closed-book midterm and final exams. There is one term project culminating in oral presentations.

Computer resources: There are two computer sessions conducted in general EE computing labs. No specialized software is required.

Participation and initiative (instructor evaluation) 5%
Participation (peer evaluation)5%
Homeworks (individual)15%
Team Project20%
Class presentation10%
Midterm 20%
Final exam25%
Outcome coverage:

This class covers all ABET-defined outcomes.

a. an ability to apply knowledge of mathematics, science, and engineering. Several lectures focus on engineering models and calculation of system parameters. (M)

b. an ability to design and conduct experiments, as well as to analyze and interpret data. Introduction to Design of Experiments is covered in one lecture. Students have to work with Pugh charts to different design prototypes (M)

c. An ability to design a system, component or process to meet desired needs within realistic constraints such as economic, environmental, social, political, ethical, health and safety, manufacturability and sustainability Several aspects of product design theory are covered, including innovation needs, originality, design for manufacturability, and design evaluation approaches. (H)

d. an ability to function on multi-disciplinary teams. Students are prepared to function as a highly interdisciplinary team of about twenty people, covering electrical, mechanical, and computer engineering, marketing, project management, video production, media relationships, and human resource management. (H)

e. an ability to identify, formulate, and solve engineering problems. Students are regularly given homeworks dedicated to identification, formulation, and solving of engineering problems. (M)

f. an understanding of professional and ethical responsibility. Invited lectures on intellectual property, mentoring, high-tech venture development cover a broad array of ethical issues. (M)

g. an ability to communicate effectively. Students have to prepare a variety of technical presentation materials, among them an "elevator speech," a "napkin engineering sketch", a traditional Power-Point oral presentation, and a 15-page long term project report. (H)

h. the broad education necessary to understand the impact of engineering solutions in a global and societal context. Engineering contests are designed to bring attention to the importance of technology in society, look for new applications of existing technologies (M)

i. a recognition of the need for, and an ability to engage in life-long learning. Early in class students are introduced to techniques of independent learning, advanced literature search, and independent idea evaluation. A portion of the closing lecture of class is dedicated to discussion of research opportunities on campus, graduate school, and experiences of industrial engineers. (M)

j. a knowledge of contemporary issues. Invited lectures by an intellectual property lawyer and by venture capitalists are based on the most recent examples of activities in these fields (M)

k. an ability to use the techniques, skills, and modern engineering tools necessary for engineering practice. Students are familiarized with rapid prototyping, CNC machining, computer assisted design, and a wide variety of formal creativity techniques. (M)

Prepared by: Alexander Mamishev

Last revised: 5/17/2007