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Engineering EXPO 2024 brings a dozen new innovative prototypes and projects to SUNY New Paltz

More than 60 SUNY New Paltz students in mechanical, electrical and computer engineering showcased 12 ingenious capstone projects and prototypes at the 2024 Engineering Design EXPO on Friday, May 3. 

This end-of-year tradition for the Division of Engineering Programs is the culmination of the Senior Design Project, a requirement for all undergraduates in New Paltz engineering programs. 

Through this capstone project, future engineers learn within a year how to work together to build on original ideas or improve upon existing structures from previous capstone courses. This process involves collaboration with faculty advisors who offer insight and expertise in refining their ideas. 

“To the 12 teams here today, you demonstrate and manifest through the work presented here the brilliance and the excellence of what this institution has to offer,” said SUNY New Paltz President Darrell P. Wheeler. “You work through complex problems and engage competing ideas in order to advance a vision that’s on display here today.” 

Projects at the EXPO bring students in mechanical, electrical and computer engineering together to craft a new or existing design.   

“Having expertise in all of these different disciplines where we could each bounce off ideas was crucial in creating our final product,” said Andrew Sykut ’24 (Computer Engineering), whose team designed an apparatus for recovering high-altitude weather balloons. “Through this exchange, I learned how vital each of these fields are to the engineering process.”  

Each year, these undergraduate engineering majors – most of whom are seniors on the eve of graduation – make time in their rigorous schedules to collaborate on projects that address common scientific issues, such as a boat apparatus for scientists testing water samples. 

“All of us had a strong interest in this project from the beginning, so even when there were challenges in managing each other’s schedules, it was easy to delegate tasks and see everything come together,” said Bianca Bermudez ’24 (Mechanical Engineering).  

Then, there are the project teams that conceive and design a potential commercial product that could fly off the shelves someday. 

“It can be difficult to eyeball how much to put into a drink when you’re making a mixed beverage, so our product is designed to make this pastime more efficient,” said Brett Hoenig ’24 (Electrical Engineering), part of the team behind the Drink and Mixing Unit, also known as DAMU, a computerized appliance designed to simplify making cocktails and mocktails. 

At the EXPO, students have a platform to showcase their products before an audience that includes their peers and professors as well as industry leaders and business owners. 

“Coming here always inspires me,” said alumnus Michael Lauchaire ’04 (Business Management), who currently works as the Senior Program of Research & Development and Innovation at Central Hudson®, one of the EXPO’s regular sponsors. “I enjoy hearing about new innovations that could potentially solve some of the biggest problems today.”  

The Division of Engineering Programs thanks Central Hudson® and ELNA Magnetics for their support of the spring 2024 Engineering Design EXPO. 

Click here for the full list of designs at the 2024 Engineering Design EXPO, along with videos outlining their creation.