Department of Technology

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UNI Solar Panthers Team

UNI e-Boat project's mission is to promote eco-friendly boat technologies in Iowa lakes and rivers. This unique project is part of an undergraduate senior design requirement in the Electrical and Information Engineering Technology Program at UNI. Many of us are well aware of pollution of Iowa Lakes and Rivers due to the massive agricultural production. However, a hidden fact known as “oil and gas spills” by inefficient two stroke boat motors, constitute a significant pollution in the Iowa Lakes and rivers. Worldwide 236,000 metric tons of oil & oil products are leaked into the water through these types of boats, “more then seven times the amount spilled by Exxon Valdez Spill in Alaska in 1989!”. We are proud of our solar e-boat project and our sponsors to keep Iowa lakes and rivers clean for our future generations!

Click Here to visit the UNI EBoat webpage where you can find past year's results and more information about the Solar Boat team.

Electrical Engineering Technology

UNI Robotics Team

The UNI ATMAE student chapter has a robotics team that competes every year at a nation wide competition against other universities around the U.S. ATMAE, The Association of Technology, Management, and Applied Engineering, sets standards for academic program accreditation, personal certification, and professional development for educators and industry professionals involved in integrating technology, leadership and design. ATMAE serves faculty, students, and industry professionals dedicated to solving complex technological problems and developing the competitive technologist and applied engineering workforce.

The UNI ATMAE student chapter robotics team participated in the Robotic Manipulator Contest at the 2008 NAIT conference in Nashville, TN and won the Best Electrical/Control Methodology award. To win the Best Electrical/Control Methodology award, teams are evaluated on use of sophisticated electrical/control components, design innovation, soundness of design methodology, craftsmanship and documentation.

Click Here to download a PDF file to see pictures and information to explain more about the UNI Robotics team at UNI.

ATMAE UNI robotics team won the grand prize in the ATMAE 2011 student robotics competition held in Cleveland, OH, on November 11, 2011. The task objective is to fetch 36 colored Ping-Pong balls placed on a table, sort them based on colors autonomously, and then deliver them to designated destinations. The UNI robot is named Panther – Collect Analyze Transfer (P-CAT). P-CAT is a semi-autonomous 2ft by 2ft vehicle designed to efficiently complete the retrieval, sorting and disbursement of the Ping-Pong balls. See news report and videos of the team on Youtube.

Click Here to visit the ATMAE UNI student chapter webpage to learn more about the program.

MSETI Area Project

The MSETI Project describes a partnership on Math-Science-Engineering Technology in Iowa on Applied Renewable Energy Areas (MSETI - AREA) between UNI College of Natural Sciences and Cedar Falls-Waterloo community schools, specifically NI Price Lab School, Holmes Junior High School, and Waterloo community schools. The immediate goals of the UNI and area middle schools and junior high schools partnership for the improvement of students’ mathematical and scientific skill sets, improve their technological literacy by creating an environment where they must understand and figure out relationships among basic mathematics, science and engineering technology applied to renewable energy fields in order to mentor and manage effectively, and to give them a professional skill-set for successfully applying mathematics and science to technical projects with diverse teams throughout their careers. Another goal is to use a number of renewable energy based hands-on projects to promote mathematics and science for middle school teachers and students.

UNI Electrical and Information Engineering Technology (EET) program (www.uni.edu/indtech/eet) is Iowa’s first and only state institution that grants a BS degree in the electrical engineering technology area. Engineering technology is the profession in which knowledge of mathematics and natural sciences gained by higher education, experience, and practice is devoted primarily to the implementation and extension of existing technology for the benefit of humanity. Renewable energy applications such as wind, solar, hydro, and hydrogen-fuel cell theory and applications are covered in the program in a number of classes and projects. One of the recent senior design projects successfully completed in the EET program is design and construction of an energy bike “UNI e-Bike” project. The UNI e-Bike is a human-powered stationary bicycle equipped with a permanent magnet direct current (DC) pollution free (zero-emission) generator. The generator delivers electricity to a display board with a number of electrical loads of varying energy efficiency values. It allows the student cyclist to power incandescent and compact fluorescent light (CFL) bulbs, a radio, tape player and other small appliances either directly from the generator or from a deep cycle battery used as energy storage. The cyclist in fact may feel the difference in energy efficiency of the different loads such as energy efficient CFLs and inefficient incandescent light bulbs.

UNI e-Bike will be used in this MSETI – AREA project extensively. This project is a fun, hands-on learning tool and an appealing way to engage young people in conversations about the environmental and economic benefits of energy efficiency and the use of energy efficient products. This bike also offers an opportunity to emphasize a link between saving energy, therefore consumers can make informed energy choices.

A series of weekend professional development workshops will be held in the fall semester of the academic year. Teachers who have completed the workshop will then be able to implement the energy concepts in their classrooms with the e-Bike, creating an environment where students must understand and figure out relationships among basic mathematics, science and engineering technology applied to renewable energy fields.

Click Here to visit the MSETI-AREA webpage for more information.

Hickory Hills Project

Starr Hydro and e-Wind Power Energy Project is a collaboration between the faculty, staff, and students of the Electrical Engineering Technology (EET) Program and the Manufacturing Technology Program at the Department of Technology and Hickory Hills Park.

Starr-Hickory Hills Renewable Energy Station is a small-scale green electricity generation plant. It uses wind, solar, and hydro (water) resources available in Hickory Hills Park to generate electricity. The electricity goes to a power house, which monitors, regulates, and stores the power. Then, the power house sends electricity to park facilities and the local power company.

Click Here to learn more about this project.