Outcome: Researchers from Center for Advanced Communications of Villanova University working with the faculty members from the Mechanical Engineering and Civil Engineering departments have introduced an Engineering Interdisciplinary Project on Acoustic Fault Detection to a total number of 160 freshman engineering students.
Impact/Benefit: The course provides the freshman engineering students with broad applications of acoustic and ultrasonic technologies in nondestructively detecting and classifying man-made objects with different flaws and cracks from metallic and concrete materials. The students taking this course become familiar with the various mechanisms for measurements of real acoustic, ultrasonic, and vibration data through the use of strain gage, microphone, speakers, and ultrasonic transducers.
Explanation: This course provides an excellent opportunity to expose freshman students to real-world applications in electrical, mechanical and civil engineering applications, incorporating signal generation, collection, and processing techniques. During this course, the students enhance their abilities in problem solving, advanced computing, image generation, reporting, and professional presentations. The students enroll from all majors in the College of Engineering, including Electrical Engineering, Computer Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Civil Engineering, Environmental Engineering, and Chemical Engineering.
Students perform experiments and data analyses: a) Students make and crack concrete beams, install vibration sensors for data collection, and observe the spectrum results for crack classification. b) Students collect ultrasonic data for material faults and the imaging results.