This year has taught me many things about the intersection of design and engineering. As an engineer, design often gets put in the background of many of the projects that I complete. A great example of this is my senior design project. This project is a gantry system that detects weld completeness in medical devices. The project was great to work on and ended up working well. Overall it is a very successful project, however, aesthetics were not taken into consideration at all. This mainly has to due with the fact that this was a proof of concept and having wires exposed would allow Medtronic to iterate on our design.
This class got me thinking about the importance of aesthetics in all designs, even the ones that we don’t originally see as needing an aesthetic touch. I got to thinking about the way that we could have added aesthetics to our senior design project. For the most part, I thought that the design of the Ligasure device itself could be replicated in the design. This is a sleek design with modern curves and an ergonomic handle to ensure surgeons don’t encounter any discomfort during surgery.
The projects that I completed in this class also taught me a lot about success and failure. I believe that I was very successful in my upcycling project. I created something that has continued to work every day and still sits in my house. My final project, however, was not as successful. I have a newfound respect for amateur tank builders because creating a tank that can support life and can function consistently is very difficult. I was able to create something that looks aesthetically pleasing, but I am not comfortable putting my fish inside of the tank. In addition, the need to support life severely decreases the amount of materials that can be used for the project.
While I was able to create something that is beautiful and unique, I was not able to successfully make a fish tank. I am not comfortable keeping my fish in the tank because there seems to be problems with leaking that had to be fixed with materials that are not safe for fish.
In the end, I was able to make a tank with the aesthetic that I was going for but in the process managed to kill every plant that I put inside. If I were to redo this project, I would use thick glass to create the tank so that I would not have to worry about the tank breaking or leeching chemicals into the water. I did a ton of research but continued to have leaks in the tank.