Lake Superior State University
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Alum Success

“The material covered in LSSU's engineering program provided me a solid foundation for graduate studies. The systematic approach and communication skills needed to tackle engineering projects were taught and then practiced over and over again. In particular I appreciate the many hours spent by the faculty to develop oral presentation skills in each student. As a graduate student now, these skills have proven to be highly beneficial and, to my surprise, obviously not taught to the same extent at many other universities.”

Mark Reese, Mechanical Engineering 2005
Hawaii Natural Energy Institute
School of Ocean & Earth Science and Technology
Graduate Student, University of Hawaii at Manoa

School of Engineering

Senior Projects 2006-2007

Team SDS Logo

Team Superior Drivetrain Solutions

Members:

  • Clifford Cook
  • James Dilworth
  • Andrew Kissick
  • Price McAllister

Faculty Advisor:

  • Dr. Wael Mokhtar

Company:

  • Lake Superior State University
    Society of Automotive Engineers - LSSU Chapter

Industrial Contact:

  • Ray Adams and Paul Duesing

Project Description: SAE Mini Baja Competition - Drivetrain

The Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) Mini-Baja Competition has been a long-standing collegiate contest that challenges the skills of both graduate and undergraduate students. The competition takes place over a weekend with 140 teams participating in the events. Briggs & Stratton, Timken, Polaris Industries and Igus, Inc. are the sponsors for the summer 2007 competition.

LSSU's School of Engineering and Technology, in conjunction with the local SAE student chapter, has assembled design teams to prepare for the summer 2007 event under the umbrella of Laker Racing.

The project has been broken into two main tasks: drivetrain and chassis. Design constraints, team management, budgetary limitations and work place procedures are all components of the project process. Superior Drivetrain Solutions (SDS) will handle the drivetrain responsibilities which include designing, building and testing the Mini-Baja engine, transmission, rear axle assembly, steering, brake, controls and throttle. SDS' sister team, Twisted Off Road Chassie (TORC), is responsible for the chassis.

Laker Racing expects to compete at the SAE Midwest Regional competition at Rochester Institute of Technology (Rochester, NY) in June 2007.

Links to the 2006-2007 Teams:

Optim- ization of Salmon DNA as an Internal Standard for qPCR

Elaina Murray

The Escherichia coli species is a human fecal contamination indicator and as such is used in beach monitoring efforts. Quantifying E. Coli presence in local beach waters helps the health department determine if a beach should be closed. The current method of determination, Colilert, takes 18 hours to produce data. Quantitative Polymerase Chain Reaction (qPCR), which measure genetic DNA, is also method used to quantify the number of E. Coli, but it can be done much faster than Colilert. In order to standardize the qPCR results, an internal standard is included which is salmon DNA. This project goes through the process of optimizing the salmon standard curve. Each of the components was modified and the resulting standard curve was analyzed for improvements; the primers and probe were purchased new and the concentrations were varied, the DNA was purchased new and the standard curve concentrations and dilution methods were varied, the DNA was cleaned with a Qiagen kit, and new master mix and bovine serum albumin were purchased and prepared. We found that changes to the concentrations of primers and probe and cleaning the DNA showed an increase of optimization, and that changing the dilution methods had no effect of optimization. A combination of the above modifications may be able to produce an optimized salmon DNA standard curve.

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