Updates on the campus response to coronavirus (COVID-19)

Students Overcome Turbulence to Shine at Capstone

Atlanta, GA
Electromagnetic Material Melting Apparatus (EMMA)

Electromagnetic Material Melting Apparatus (EMMA)

Download Image More Photos

The Capstone Design Expo returned to McCamish Pavilion for the first time since the fall of 2019, with more than 500 students broken into 118 teams from seven schools and three colleges participating. While most participants were in-person, teams also had online representatives who were available to talk to online judges who could participate from anywhere in the world, broadening the judging pool. 

Recognizing the unique setup, extra awards were given out in two categories for those who impressed the online judges. At the end of the night, biomedical engineering teams took home both Best Overall Awards, and also had a student on one of the Best Interdisciplinary Project teams. Mechanical engineering also had a strong showing, with students on both Best Interdisciplinary Project teams earning awards along with prizes for best mechanical engineering project and best industrial design and mechanical engineering project.

The School of Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) had 20 teams participate in the Capstone Design Expo this year. Electromagnetic Material Melting Apparatus, or EMMA for short, won the ECE Disciplinary Prize. BASKeTS, a multi-major team with ECE representation, received the in-person Interdisciplinary Prize. Twenty-six teams participated in the interdisciplinary projects category.

EMMA is an electromagnetic induction furnace designed to deliver up to 30KW of inductive heating to melt various metals. The furnace runs on only electricity and does not require any gases to operate, making it a low long-term cost. It would be useful for DIY enthusiasts and small-scale blacksmiths. Members of the EMMA team are Nicholas Meyer, a computer engineering major, and Benjamin Bogard, Dakota Cobb, and Michael Probst, all electrical engineering majors. They were advised by ECE Associate Professor Lukas Graber. 

BASKeTS is a low-cost and locally fabricated and maintainable neonatal incubator for use in Ghana. The team worked on this device with William Okyere-Frempong, a physician and superintendent of a hospital in Accra, Ghana. Members of the BASKeTS team are Kennedy Houston, a computer engineering major; Alena Plaskett, a biomendical engineering major; and Sydney Grant, Brittney Krajcovic, Townley Meeske, and Sydney Streib, all mechanical engineering majors. 

Okyere-Frempong visited Atlanta during the 2019-2020 academic year as a participant in The Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship Program, locally hosted through Emory University. While here, he met Whit Smith, an ECE senior academic professional, and described his needs for his hospital, which included incubators for infants. That conversation eventually led to a senior design project advised by Smith that has been ongoing since spring 2020. To learn more about this effort, please see Interdisciplinary Senior Design Teams Create Low-cost Infant Incubator, an article that was published on the ECE website in August 2021. 

Read all about the Fall 2021 Capstone Design Expo, written by Ben Wright

Photo credits on this article and Wright’s article: Candler Hobbs and Andre Magyar

Additional Photos

Last revised December 9, 2021