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07-06-2011

Clarkson University Design Team Wins Second Place in Competition

[A photograph for media use is available at http://www.clarkson.edu/news/photos/integrated-design-mae-2011.jpg.]

An integrated design team from the Department of Mechanical and Aeronautical Engineering at Clarkson University has won second place in the inaugural Undergraduate Design Project Competition in Rehabilitation and Assistive Devices.

An integrated design team from the Department of Mechanical and Aeronautical Engineering at Clarkson University has won second place in the inaugural Undergraduate Design Project Competition in Rehabilitation and Assistive Devices for their project The device proposed in their project, "A Partial Weight -bearing Reminder Device for Gait Rehabilitation After Lower Extremity Surgery," addresses an important need.

Following lower-extremity surgery, such as a hip replacement, patients are often instructed to avoid loading the affected leg while it heals. This is often challenging for older patients. 

When complete, the proposed device will feature a combination of aural, visual, and tactile alerts to remind the patient to follow the doctor’s orders. The device includes an insole that can be inserted into any shoe (or slipper) and will be manufacturable at a low cost. 

To participate in the competition, the students prepared a short paper describing their proposed device in mid-January.

Under the direction of assistant professors Kevin Fite and Laurel Kuxhaus, mechanical engineering majors Elsbeth D. Adams '11 of Evans Mills, N.Y., Travis L. Kiser '11 of Orlando, Fla., Rochelle S. LaPorte '11 of St. Albans, Vt., Tracy M. Roux '11 of Roxbury, Vt., and engineering & management major Caitlin C. Storey '11 of Clinton, N.Y., researched the product need, market potential, and economic plan in addition to their device design.

The final competition was held in late June at the 2011 American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) Summer Bioengineering Conference in Farmington, Pa. The students gave an oral presentation and demonstration of the prototype.

Clarkson University came in second place, while competing against teams from Purdue University, Rice University, Western Carolina University, Wayne State University, and the New Jersey Institute of Technology.

The team received a monetary award from the ASME Bioengineering Division and the National Science Foundation to be used for prototype development and to defray the costs of traveling to the conference. 

More information about the competition can be found at http://www.asmeconferences.org/SBC2011/UndergraduateCompetition.cfm

Clarkson University launches leaders into the global economy. One in six alumni already leads as a CEO, VP or equivalent senior executive of a company. Located just outside the Adirondack Park in Potsdam, N.Y., Clarkson is a nationally recognized research university for undergraduates with select graduate programs in signature areas of academic excellence directed toward the world’s pressing issues. Through 50 rigorous programs of study in engineering, business, arts, sciences and health sciences, the entire learning-living community spans boundaries across disciplines, nations and cultures to build powers of observation, challenge the status quo, and connect discovery and engineering innovation with enterprise.

Photo caption: An integrated design team from the Department of Mechanical and Aeronautical Engineering at Clarkson University has won second place in the inaugural Undergraduate Design Project Competition in Rehabilitation and Assistive Devices for their project "A Partial Weight -bearing Reminder Device for Gait Rehabilitation After Lower Extremity Surgery." Above, team member Travis L. Kiser '11, a mechanical engineering major from Orlando, Fla., affixes a device prototype to the leg of Katelynn M. Hackett '14, a mechanical engineering major from Corfu, N.Y.

[News directors and editors: For more information, contact Michael P. Griffin, director of News & Digital Content Services, at 315-268-6716 or mgriffin@clarkson.edu.]

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