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About ME


Spring 2018


All courses and descriptions can be found on SIS. For new elective course descriptions, please see below.

Special Topics Course Descriptions

ME 0093-01 Autonomous Intelligent Robots
Monday & Wednesday, 3:00-4:45 p.m.
Assistant Professor Jivko Sinapov

What is intelligence and how can it be implemented in a physical robot? If this question sparks your curiosity, then this course is for you. We will cover algorithms and representations that allow robots to operate autonomously and intelligently in the real world. Topics include mapping and localization, 2D and 3D visual perception for robots, planning and control, machine learning for robots, and human-robot interaction. Through the course, you will learn to program robot applications using the Robot Operating System (ROS), the largest and most popular open-source framework for autonomous robots.

Assignments will include several small C++ programming projects aimed at learning ROS, followed by a team final project on a topic of your choosing. For the assignments and final projects, you will use the TurtleBot2 mobile robots. At the end of the course, 1) you will have been exposed to the state-of-the-art in autonomous robotics; 2) you will have an understanding of the current research areas, challenges, and open problems; and 3) you will be able to write applications and software modules for robots using ROS.

Prerequisites: 1+ years of programming experience (C++ preferred, but any language counts)

ME 0093-02 Electronics for Mechanical Engineers
Tuesday & Thursday, 10:30-11:45 a.m.
Lecturer Brandon Stafford

A project-based hands-on electronics boot camp, focusing on the design and fabrication of printed circuit boards and interfacing with microcontrollers from the Arduino and Raspberry Pi families.

ME 0093-03 Launch Your Capstone
Monday & Wednesday, 4:30-5:45 p.m.
Professor of the Practice Josh Wiesman

Combining consumer research, technical product design, and business / operational thinking, students will get to push product concepts from the early stage designs and prototypes to (near) finished, market-ready products.

In this class, you will work with a multidisciplinary team to continue a product or concept from the Fall Semester and drive it forward. Each team will dive deeper in understanding the consumers, business, and technical constraints in order to present a product that is production and market ready. Topics will include design for manufacture, material selection, manufacturing strategy and implementation, and marketing and sales strategy.

ME 0093-04 Design for Emerging Markets
Tuesday & Thursday, 3:00-4:15 p.m.
Lecturer Natasha Wright

This course is restricted to students who took ME 0043-03 with Natasha Wright in Fall 2017.

ME 0123-01 Mechanics of Composite and Heterogeneous Materials
Monday & Wednesday, 4:30-5:45 p.m.
Professor of the Practice Michael Zimmerman

Mechanics of Composites is being updated to include the experience of building composites in a new lab in Bray. We will be using the vacuum bagging process to construct layups of composites using carbon, kevlar and glass fibers. In addition, the course will focus on the mechanics of composites using classical lamination theory, along with ANSYS finite element modeling in order to be able to design composite structures which have necessary properties. We will be partnering with the Tufts Electric Car Team to build components for the vehicle which will be used in their 2018 event. Students will gain the ability to design, analyze, build and test state-of-the-art composite structures in this class.

Recommendations: ME25

ME 0149-01/ME 0293-01 Scanning Probe Microscopy
Tuesday & Thursday, 1:30-2:45 p.m.
Professor Igor Sokolov

Scanning Probe Microscopy (SPM) is one of the major tools responsible for the development of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology. The unique combination of 3D resolution, ease of operation, and broad range of samples it can work with, make this the technique of choice for many applications in many fields of science and technology.

This course will give an overview of basic principles of SPM, concentrating on the most popular branch of SPM methods, known as Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM). AFM can be used to study surfaces of many different types of materials, form hard materials used in the semiconductor industry, to soft materials such as polymers or biological tissues. AFM can image samples which are attached to a surface, in both ambient and liquid environment. The AFM is far more than just a microscope. It is also a powerful analytical tool. Force measurements between an AFM probe and sample surface can be made with very high spatial resolution and force sensitivity. This can reveal information about the surface composition, mechanics, and structure.

Prerequisites: Senior or graduate standing

ME 0149-02 Biofluid Mechanics
Tuesday & Thursday, 4:30-5:45 p.m.
Lecturer Robert Peattie

This course provides a discussion of the fluid mechanical principles underlying the operation of physiologic systems, including the heart and circulatory system and the lungs and pulmonary system. Topics covered include blood rheology, mechanics of circulation, arterial wave propagation, oscillatory air and liquid flows and transport of dissolved or suspended solutes. Emphasis is placed on developing quantitative understanding of blood flow through the arterial system and air flow through the pulmonary system, both in health and in disease.

The course is taught at an advanced undergraduate / first year graduate level. Previous training in fluid mechanics is helpful but not required, as fluid mechanics is introduced from first principles with no expectation of past background. However, the course is highly quantitative, and mathematics at least through ordinary differential equations and some familiarity with partial differential equations is prerequisite. Principles of solving ODEs are presumed, though methods for addressing PDEs are introduced as needed. Indicial notation is introduced in the first class and used throughout the course, as are elementary principles of vector and tensor calculus. Grading is based on several major take-home homework problem sets.

Prerequisites: MATH 51 and ES 8 or graduate standing or permission of instructor.

ME 0149-03 Microfabrication in Practice
Wednesday, 6:00-9:00 p.m.
Lecturer James Vlahakis

A hands-on laboratory course that will utilize the capabilities of the Tufts Micro/Nano Fabrication Lab to teach students fundamental microfabrication processes including contact lithography, physical vapor deposition, plasma etching, wet etching, polymer deposition and more as time allows. Readings will supplement laboratory work and illuminate the fundamental physics driving each process. Class will begin with a brief lecture and the remainder of the period will be spent in the lab.

Prerequisites or Co-Requisites: ES 5, ES 8 and MATH 51 or graduate standing.

ME 0149-04 Human Centered Design
Tuesday & Thursday, 6:00-7:15 p.m.
Senior Lecturer Gary Leisk

This course fulfills the second design core for graduate students in the Mechanical Engineering Department. Working on interdisciplinary teams (including Occupational Therapy and Human Factors), students will be matched with human clients and will apply a user-centric design approach to develop tangible solutions to open-ended problems they identify. While proper tool usage and process are important, the overarching goal is to provide each client with an impactful solution, satisfying their value-based needs.

ME 0149-05 Architectural Acoustics
Monday & Wednesday, 6:00-7:15 p.m.
Lecturer Kelsey Hochgraf

This interdisciplinary, project-based course will investigate the acoustical design of rooms for music performance and speech. Beginning with the fundamentals of sound waves and human hearing, students will discover how to characterize, measure, and design the acoustics of a space to meet programmatic goals. Students will explore the physical theories and practical applications of room acoustics, auralization (acoustical simulation), and sound isolation design, with a focus on case studies from professional practice. Throughout the course, students will draw from the disciplines of engineering, physics, music, and psychology, to correlate quantifiable acoustical characteristics with perceptual experience. This course will feature multiple hands-on labs and trips to local concert halls, culminating in a final project in which students auralize a space of their own design.

ME 0149-06 Optimal Control for Robotics
Tuesday & Thursday, 6:00-7:15 p.m.
Lecturer Matthew Kelly

Students taking this course will learn the basics of optimal control for robotics applications. There will be a strong focus on trajectory optimization and trajectory-tracking controllers, and assignments will focus on applications and implementation, rather than on theory. In the first part of the course students will learn the core concepts of optimal control: programming, simulation, control, and optimization. In the second part of the course the students will put these concepts together to design and stabilize reference trajectories in simulation. The topics covered in this course are used in a variety of applications, including aircraft, satellites, robot arms, legged robots, quad-rotor helicopters.

ENP 0149-03 Emotional Design
Tuesday, 6:00-9:00 p.m.
Lecturer Jennaca Davies

The creation of meaningful products and systems requires comprehensive understanding of people’s needs, their specific environment, and awareness of the impact that user-sensitive design can have. In order to develop creative solutions to real-world issues, engineers and human factor designers must gather, analyze, and apply information that allows them to make sketches, design iterations, and prototypes. Ideas can then be tested and modified by observing how a user engages with the proposed innovation. In this hands-on, studio-based course, students are asked to investigate interdisciplinary approaches to the design process using the United Nations 17 Sustainable Development Goals as the starting point. Through a series of explorations and assignments that encourage empathic design methodologies and approaches, students will brainstorm and propose projects that consider the context of a user’s environment and ways that improvements can be made. Topics discussed will include design assessment, the physical and emotional forces that can affect a product, materials choices, and possible manufacturing methods. During the second half of the semester, teams will be created and students will make functioning prototypes that can then be presented at a final critique which will include visiting design professionals who will test and assess the designed innovations.

ENP 0149-04 Medical Fundamentals
Tuesday, 6:00-9:00 p.m.
Professor of the Practice Michael Wiklund

This course primarily serves the needs of students who plan to work in the medical industry and focus on technology development. They will gain a working knowledge of basic human anatomy, major medical conditions (i.e., the "great diseases"), and the related medical technologies and care delivery processes. When working in industry, such knowledge can accumulate slowly over many years through occasional opportunities to visit clinical environments and observe medical procedures. Meanwhile, the knowledge can be essential to the discovery of new product opportunities and matching technologies to both the clinicians' and patients' needs, suggesting that gaining it early and in a comprehensive manner would be advantageous. This course serves this purpose through classroom instruction, direct exposure to pertinent technologies, and technology assessment and design assignments.

ENP 0149-07 Industrial Design
Thursday, 6:00-9:00 p.m.
Lecturer Eric Bogner

The study of industrial design (ID) will prepared human factors engineering (HFE) and mechanical engineering (ME) students to either (1) work effectively with ID professionals, able to communicate using a common design language, or (2) apply ID principles in their own user interface development work. This course will introduce students to the history and current state of ID, the ID process, and specific ID design principles. Students will gain the ability to recognize opportunities to apply ID to help ensure that products meet users needs and expectations, as well as to help ensure that products can be used safely, effectively, and with satisfaction. Additionally, students will learn ID techniques that can be blended with HFE and ME techniques to springboard design innovation.

ENP 0149-08 Human Factors in Transportation Safety
Tuesday & Thursday, 1:30-2:45 p.m.
Lecturers Mary Sterns & JK Pollard

This course focuses on how human error, dysfunctional organizations, and fault-intolerant designs for systems and components can converge to result in accidents and near accidents, and sometimes amplify their adverse consequences. The cases to be discussed and analyzed all concern the transport of persons and/or goods. Because such cases are well documented in the media and in official investigations, they provide us with a rich body of evidence to investigate and understand. However, the issues that will be raised in these case studies apply across a broad range of industries of concern to engineers. The course objective is to understand how the numerous and complex factors present in the real world can compromise the safety of products or systems thought to represent good design practices.

ENP 0293-01 Graduate Capstone
Wednesday 6:00-7:15 p.m.
Lecturer David Aurelio

A graduate-level, capstone project design course, led by faculty from Engineering. Students participate in individual projects in human factors design problems set by industry sponsors, employers and other sources. In conjunction with Instructor, each student will choose his or her project that will either amplify an existing human factors skill, or add a complementary one. Professional-level work is required, including weekly oral report preparation, and written research proposal and report.