Engineering Clinic

The Engineering Clinic Program started in 1963. It is a sponsored Third-/Fourth-Year capstone project course. A good deal of information can be found here. A brief history can be found here. Clinic has grown from its start in Engineering to include Computer Science, Physics, Math, and a Global Program. The concept of Clinic has been copied widely but was radically different from the prevailing engineering pedagogy in 1963.

Each student-led project has a Faculty Advisor who is a coach or a mentor to the team, and not a typical Principal Investigator. However, the Faculty Advisor typically learns as much as the students do about the sponsor and the project. I’ve put both information about my time as Engineering Clinic Director and about the projects for which I’ve been the Faculty Advisor.

Engineering Clinic Director

From July 2010 to July 2015 I was the Engineering Clinic Director. The Engineering Clinic Director’s primary responsibility is recruiting of Clinic Projects for the students. The total number of projects required varies from year to year depending on the number of Engineering Majors. During my time the count in Engineering varied between 20 and 26. The total annual budget for the Engineering Clinic Program is in excess of $1,000,000. I am happy to discuss the details of the budgeting on an individual basis.

Barry Olsan, the Director of Corporate Relations initiates contact with most of the sponsors. Once he has a potential sponsor willing to either meet or or have a teleconference, the Engineering Clinic Director gets involved for the site visit or teleconference. A good fraction of my time was spent on site visits and teleconferences. The Clinic Director helps the sponsors edit the project statements and get the business agreement in place. The Clinic Director then assigns the students and the Faculty Advisors to the teams, and deals with the logistics.

I had the great benefit of having David Harris as the Associate Director for the first two years, Qimin Yang as the Associate Director for the next two years, and Lori Bassman as the Associate Director for the final year. My job would have been impossible without the support of Lorena Gonzalez, the Engineering Clinic Program Coordinator, and the rest of the Engineering support staff.

My time as Engineering Clinic Director gave me both practice at and great insight into what it takes to manage a $1,000,000 program.

Clinics I’ve Advised

Again, the Faculty Advisor is a coach or a mentor to the team, and not a Principal Investigator. Nevertheless, I’ve learned a great deal from the projects I’ve advised and I’ve learned a lot more engineering than I otherwise would have.

Year Sponsor Title
2017/2018 Ceremod Inc. Deep Brain Cooling
2015/2016 BiMBy Big Mass Battery: Engineering Challenges and Feasibility
2015/2016 AT&T (DIRECTV) Smartphone-Powered DIRECTV Antenna Installation
2014/2015 Rocketry Organization of California Multi-Channel Wireless Launch Controller
2013/2014 Project A Cappella Characterization of Acoustic Noise Generated by Capacitors on Printed Circuit Boards
2012/2013 Los Alamos National Laboratory Monitoring and Management Strategy for Liquid Cooling of LANL’s Data Center
2011/2012 Paramount Pictures Implementing Regenerative Braking on Launched Roller Coasters
2010/2011 Los Alamos National Laboratory Construction of X-ray Diagnostic Subsystems
2010/2011 M2 Renewables, Inc. Mechanical De-watering Device
2008/2009 Cobham; Sargent Fletcher Inc. Design of Test Firing Apparatus for Pneumatic Ejection Racks
2007/2008 Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory Optimizing a Water-Based Muon Detecto
2006/2007 Edwards Air Force Base Design and Construction of a Dynamic Long Range Laser Telemetry System
2006/2007 Honeywell International, Inc. Pressure Drop Characterization of Congealed Oil Flow in Compact Heat Exchangers
2005/2006 Edwards Air Force Base Design and Construction of an Optical Telemetry System
2005/2006 Southwest Research Institute (SwRI) Designing a Low Power and Lightweight Digital Camera Array
2004/2005 Lockheed Martin Advanced Technology Center Creating a Computer-Controlled Active Tracking Heliostat
2004/2005 Northrop Grumman Navigation Systems External Fiber Optic Modulator
2003/2004 Bourns, Inc. Development of Lead and Cadmium Free Thick-Film Resistors
2003/2004 Grobecker Associates & The Center for Environmental Studies Design of an Organic Waste Bioreactor
2002/2003 The Boeing Company/Phantom Works Quest for a World Record in Laser-Based Wireless Power Transmission
2000/2001 Loma Linda University Medical Center Sequential Alignment and Positioning Verification System for Functional Proton Radiosurgery
1999/2000 Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) Infrared Interferometer
1999/2000 The Boeing Company/ES&MD, Marine Systems A Thermal Control Method for the IFOG Navigation System
1998/1999 Center for Integration of Medicine and Innovative Technology (CIMIT) Minimally Invasive System for Detecting Hepatic Shock
1998/1999 Eastman Kodak Company High Speed Digital Video Disk Array Recorder
1997/1998 Orbital Sciences NIR Spectrometer
1996/1997 Accel Technologies, Inc Transforming Electronic Components into a Usable Form
1995/1996 Aerojet Electrosystems Design of Low Cost 3-Axis Stabilized Platform
1995/1996 Science Applications International Corporation Design of a Reaction Block for an Automated Combinatorial-Chemistry System
1993/1994 Northrop Grumman Corporation Novel Tooling Technologies Applied to Battle Damage Repair of Composite Structures
1993/1994 Southern California Edison High Albedo Paint Additives for Air Conditioning Energy Conservation
1991/1992 Aerojet Electrosystems Metal Hydride Compressor Characterization
1991/1992 Walter Reed Army Institute of Research (WRAIR) Development of the Experimental Space-Based Centrifuge
1990/1991 Aerojet Electrosystems Vanadium Hydride Compressor Characterization
1990/1991 Walter Reed Army Institute of Research (WRAIR) Space Based Fluorimeter
1989/1990 General Dynamics/ San Diego Fast Optical Switch
1988/1989 Southern California Edison Ultraviolet Curing