Student Projects for Industry and Non-Profits

Industry partners, non-profits and international organizations support and provide mentorship for many of the hands-on, professional experiences that benefit Villanova Engineering students. Opportunities for students include:

Senior Mechanical Engineers worked on a fatbike for Christini Technologies

Senior Capstone Projects:

A graduation requirement for all civil, computer, electrical and mechanical engineering students, senior capstone projects reflect real-world challenges and demonstrate students’ acquired knowledge. Recent projects and partners include:

  • Selective adsorbents (Air Products)
  • Ad hoc communications with autonomous vehicles (Boeing)
  • Primary electric hybrid all-wheel drive motorcycle (Christini Technologies)
  • Green stormwater infrastructure (City of Knowledge in Panama City, Panama)
  • Unexploded ordnance remediation (Golden West Humanitarian Foundation, Cambodia)
  • 3-D underwater mapping with stereo sonar (Harris Corporation)
  • Malware data repository (Lockheed Martin)
  • Satellite communication channel simulator (RT Logic)
  • A campus renovation plan for Villanova’s SEPTA rail station (SEPTA)
  • Network errors on high definition video content (Verizon)

Senior Project Studio

A highlight of the Chemical and Biological Engineering program is the department’s two-semester Senior Project Studio through which Chemical Engineering majors can participate in an industry-sponsored design or research project.

Recent undergraduate research projects include:

  • Optimization of T cell growth and manufacture
  • Preparing LtEc-alginate hydrogels for animal cell culture
  • Synthetic production of plasmids for gene therapy
  • Optimization of wetland microbial fuel cells using novel electrodes
  • Solutions for loss of coating on the ball chain (Ball Chain)
  • Remediation treatment methods for per- and poly-fluorinated contaminants (O’Brien & Gere)
Undergraduates and graduate students conduct research in the Center for Energy Smart Electronic Systems.

Research in the Center for Energy-Smart Electronic Systems (ES2): Faculty and students engaged in this NSF Industry-University Cooperative Research Center work with industry partners to develop methodologies, tools and systems that will maximize energy efficiency for the operation of electronic systems, including data centers.

Current Villanova ES2 research:

  • Thermodynamic Tools for Holistic Analysis and Optimization of Energy Efficient Data Centers
  • Compact Models for Rapid Thermal Modeling of Data Centers
  • Waste Heat Recovery and Reuse from Data Centers
Graduate students in the Sustainable Engineering program regularly present to corporate partners.

RISE Forum partner case studies:  An initiative of the College’s graduate program in Sustainable Engineering, the RISE Forum is a vehicle for academic-industry collaboration, where graduate student teams work directly with member companies to identify and advance sustainable engineering practices.

Recent student projects:

  • Reducing the environmental footprint for Manayunk Brewery
  • Conducting a life cycle assessment for Longwood Gardens’ Greenhouse
  • Evaluating the sustainable supply chain for Hershey African Cocoa Farming
  • Designing solar headlamps for a community in Nicaragua
  • Assisting a local municipality with its Energy Transition Plan

“Villanova’s College of Engineering provides students with project-based experiences through the whole product lifecycle—from visioning to prototyping to testing and retesting, through producing a finished product and interacting with customers. Students also have to manage a budget and meet timelines. These experiences set Nova engineers apart.”—John Monahan ’86 EE, former President, RT Logic

 

“Working with an industry-leading company like Christini Technologies (owned by Villanova Engineering alumnus Steve Christini ’95 ME) was an incredibly rewarding experience that allowed our team to transition our work from the classroom to the real world. We utilized a diverse set of skills and perspectives to elevate our design and transform it into a working prototype.”—Ben Crawford, Mechanical Engineering

LEARNING BY DOING

Educational Partnership and Alumni Connections Draw Villanova Engineers to NAWCAD, Lakehurst

Educational Partnership and Alumni Connections Draw Villanova Engineers to NAWCAD, Lakehurst

An educational partnership agreement with the Naval Air Warfare Center Aircraft Division (NAWCAD) in Lakehurst, NJ, provides unique capstone project opportunities for engineering seniors, many of whom later find employment with the organization.  

Communicating with Frankie: Progress on a Nova Solution

Communicating with Frankie: Progress on a Nova Solution 

After a crowdfunding campaign helped raise more than $40,000 from Villanova donors, Computer Engineering seniors Michael DiGiacomo and Christian Berger made significant progress on a system to help Villanovans with spastic cerebral palsy communicate more independently.

Team VUDURU M.A.E. credits Emily Dupervil ’22 VSB for her artistic contributions to the mission logo.

Shooting for Mars: Villanova Team Named Finalist in NASA RASC-AL Challenge

In its first year in the competition, a team of students from Villanova, Drexel and Rutgers universities has been named a finalist in NASA’s Revolutionary Aerospace Systems Concepts—Academic Linkage (RASC-AL) program. Led by Villanova Engineering graduate student Nicholas Florio ’20 EE, ’21 MSEE, the team developed the Jemison Crewed Ascent Vehicle, honoring the first African American female astronaut, Mae C. Jemison. In June they will present their concept to NASA and other aerospace leaders.