Innovative Projects Around Every Corner at ‘Rose Show’

Wednesday, May 11, 2022
Student demonstrates a robotic arm at the Rose Show.

This year’s Rose Show had student teams from a variety academic departments showcasing innovative and creative projects that were designed, created and presented to clients during the 2021-22 academic year.

Student inventiveness, ingenuity and good old-fashioned know-how created a variety of projects during the 2021-22 academic year that applied lessons learned in class with technology from innovation and fabrication centers to address problems posed by families, organizations and companies.

Nearly 100 of those creative projects from several academic departments were featured in this year’s The Rose Show – the Institute’s rendition of The World’s Fair – which featured such interesting items as sustainability solutions, mobility devices, software applications, machine learning solutions, and projectile launchers. There also were an assortment of projects designed to give competition teams a winning edge.

That’s what happened with a robotic arm for the Rose-Hulman Rover Team that earned the William A. Kline Innovation Award as this year’s outstanding Rose Show project. Senior mechanical engineering majors Michael Hall, Colton McKay, and Nathan Lee along with senior computer engineering student Matthew Hummel created a remote-controlled arm that can lift heavy objects, type on a laptop keyboard and complete other assigned tasks. The arm was created for a rover that could explore Mars and the Moon. (Kline was the Associate Dean of Innovation and supervisor of Rose-Hulman’s Branam and Kremer Innovation Centers before his death in March of 2021.)

Other Rose Show projects filling the Sports and Recreation Center’s fieldhouse had biomedical engineering students developing a device that will be used by a variety of children with low motor control of their legs in therapy sessions with a physical therapist. The device can be attached to a treadmill to help children improve their walking gait and stamina. 

Senior civil and environmental engineering students designed multi-use trail for Carmel, Indiana; a new fire substation for Llaves, New Mexico; improvements to an outdoor entertainment venue; and enclave for a Ghana village. 

Meanwhile, a new greenhouse and rainwater collection system have been designed by mechanical engineering students for Terre Haute’s ReTHink organization to help bring food to community gardens.

Electrical and computer engineering students developed a way for students from the Indiana School for the Blind and Visually Impaired to play outdoors and get exercise into their daily routines.

Each project was judged by alumni, faculty and staff members, and other professional engineers, scientists and mathematicians. Projects earning departmental grand-prize honors were: 


The Motorized Leg Crane
Team Members: Abi Clayton, Gabby Davidson and Logan Jilek
Faculty Advisor: Alan Chiu, PhD

This assistive device has been designed to help a person with Primary Progressive Multiple Sclerosis (PPMS) get on and off a motorcycle independently. The client’s PPMS symptoms reduce his neurologic function, preventing him from participating in hobbies that he previously enjoyed. The device consists of a winch and a steel frame that can rotate across the motorcycle seat. The device is operated independently, powered by the client’s motorcycle, reduces the vertical distance the client must lift a leg, and reduces the effort exerted to move a leg horizontally. 


Scored Games
Team Members: Lucus Bendzsa, Alan Bruner, Will Feldman, and Elvis Morales Campoverde
Faculty Advisor: Kim Tracy, PhD

The Scored iOS app helps calculate scores of board games so that players better enjoy the game. The device’s camera and machine learning algorithms recognize the board and all the game pieces to keep score and store each player’s total in a popular board game database, BoardGameGeeks. Although the application currently only supports a few games, with the team’s easy-to-use framework allows additional games to be added easily in the future.

Prospective Student Welcome Project
Team Members: Keith Condray-Raderstorf, Jordan Hayes, Michael Nixon, and Shamus Sparling
Faculty Advisor: Steve Chenoweth, PhD

This project could be used by Rose-Hulman’s Office of Admissions to provide prospective students with information about their upcoming campus visits. Prospective students receive a message with a link to view the dashboard for their visit – covering such valuable information as arrival times, directions, scheduled meetings, and meal passes. This system was designed to give the clients flexibility in customizing what information is displayed to prospective students while tracking views of the dashboard for each visit.

Team Members: Sybil Chen, Wenze Ma, Henry Yang, and Darren Zhu
Faculty Advisor: Shawn Bohner, PhD

This web-based software application provides the Rose-Hulman community with a centralized location to find data pertaining to courses, students and instructors. App users can view their schedules within the Rose Data website directly, instead of navigating between Banner Web and the Schedule Lookup page. Rose Data can also retrieve data from the Degree Planner Database, which provides data for features related to the course section planner.


Attacking a CAN Bus Using Sub-Bit Pulses from a Custom Driver and FPGA
Team Members: John Bass, Brendan Boewe, Cory Snyder, and Sam VanDenburgh
Faculty Advisor: Jianjian Song, PhD

This protocol is a communication standard implemented in all modern vehicles. Sensors and controllers within the vehicle transmit and receive messages on a single bus. We have developed a sub-bit timing attack that exploits devices’ differing sample points. The attack uses an FPGA and custom CAN driver to allow an attacker to transmit messages, which devices interpret differently depending on their sample points. Testing the attack on a four-device CAN network yielded a 100% success rate at 100 kbps, but success rates dropped significantly at higher baud rates.

Real-Time Vehicle Identification by Embedded TPMS Demodulation
Team Members: Scott Busche, Ethan Carter, Brendan King, and James Werne
Faculty Advisor: Wayne Padgett, PhD

This project provides a proof of concept for a drive-through application where a device intercepts Tire Pressure Monitoring Systems (TPMS) signals and identifies the vehicle. The device uses a software-defined radio and Raspberry Pi to trigger TPMS sensors, receive TPMS signals, and then demodulate and extract the identification of the possible leak.

Custom Zynq Ultrascale+ Board Schematic Redesign and 100MHz Board to Board Communication and Signal Integrity Testing
Team Members: Nicholas Snow, Joshua Giambattista, Justin Heinz, and Anthony Sparks
Faculty Advisor: Jianjian Song, PhD

The schematics for an airport hangar have been redesign for a custom Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) Printed Circuit Board (PCB) that has the same form, fit and function as a current system being used by the project’s clients. Our goal was to replace a Xilinx Spartan-3an FPGA and embedded MicroBlaze processor with a new Xilinx Zynq Ultrascale+ FPGA with a hardware ARM core as well as provide hardware and software examples for the new platform for signal integrity testing.


Recipe Desktop App that Integrates Culture in Coding
Team Members: Zara Burns, Andi Fiani and Shelby Schipper
Faculty Advisors: Steve Chenoweth, PhD, and Annelise Watt, PhD

This project applied java coding to create a desktop app that features Lebanese food recipes. The app allows users to select ingredients and “cook” their dish. It lets the user to customize its recipes due to dietary restrictions and personal preference. Initial screens have been provided to implement additional features.

Automated Greenhouse
Team Members: Grace Eggers, Madeleine Klee, Brandon Marcus, and Chase Strother
Faculty Advisor: Patsy Brackin

This project will consist of building an automated indoor greenhouse that will remove the daily stress of watering plants and make sure that they will thrive in proper temperatures.


Image Processing
Team Member: Chengyu Qian
Faculty Advisor: David Finn, PhD

It is common for an image to contain noise and blurring, which can be removed through the practice of heat equation. To remove blurred pixels, the team can run the heat equation backward. After the noise has been removed on the image, the blurred pixels are sharpened while avoiding the noisy pixels from returning.

Building a CAS in Lua for Use in LaTeX
Team Member: Evan Cochrane
Faculty Advisor: Timothy All, PhD

(This project had a Non-Disclosure Agreement)


Powder Coating Furnace
Team Members: Jonathan Anstett, Harrison Finch, Christopher Jaeger, Ray Pasco, and Addison White
Faculty Advisor: Zac Chambers, PhD

Butch Marion, part-owner of Patricksburg Powder Coating, desired to expand his powder coating capabilities with a larger powder coating oven enabling him to service larger parts, such as truck frames. A prototype was developed and successfully tested that contains two burner tubes, an igniter and full controls. A thermal couple and multiple relays control gas flow while power controls handle various electrical components.

Design-Build-Fly Competition Plane
Team Members: Connor Chambers, Madeleine Hamon, Will Jordan, Taylor Lueking, Grayson Nemets, Ian Quick, and Zheyuan Zheng
Faculty Advisor: Zac Chambers, PhD, and Matthew Riley, PhD

A high-lift, low-speed, short-takeoff model aircraft was designed and built to distribute COVID vaccine vials, syringes and other fragile packages to otherwise inaccessible regions. A detachable payload bay was created for efficient loading and unloading.

Grand Prix Engineering
Team Members: Mackenzie Beasley, Rishav Khosla and Riley O’Connell
Faculty Advisor: Zac Chambers, PhD

Components of a formula-style racing vehicle were conceived, designed, fabricated, and implemented from scratch for this year’s Formula Society of Automotive Engineers’ student competitions scheduled May 18-21 and June 15-18 at the Michigan International Speedway near Brooklyn, Michigan.

EMT Cutting Tool
Team Members: Elijah Huff and Ben Warrick
Faculty Advisors: Rebecca Bercich, PhD, and Shraddha Sangelkar, PhD

(This project had a Non-Disclosure Agreement)

Long Ball Labs
Team Members: Nathan Burke, Brian Long and Adam Taylor
Faculty Advisor: Zac Chambers, PhD

(This project had a Non-Disclosure Agreement)

Wingsuit Performance
Team Members: Lyra Bailey, Grant Connolly, Zach Juday, and John Zhou
Faculty Advisor: Rebecca Bercich, PhD

Internationally ranked wingsuit pilot Joe Ridler relies on a  relies on precise suit modifications to fly further or faster. The ability to measure Mach number and angle relative to the free stream throughout a jump allows for better comparison between suit iterations and practice jumps. This project aimed to turn Ridler’s helmet into a data acquisition system to collect accurate speed, angle, temperature, humidity, and pressure readings without presenting a safety hazard. The developed solution uses a matrix of pressure sensors and nonlinear regression to estimate angle of attack, angle of sideslip and Mach number while an additional sensor collects temperature and humidity readings. 


Six DOF Robot Arm
Team Members: Michael Hall, Matthew Hummel, Nathan Lee, and Colton McKay
Faculty Advisor: Jay McCormack, PhD

A new iteration of a robotic arm was created for Rose-Hulman’s rover that competed in this year’s University Rover Challenge. Under remote control, the arm lifts heavy objects, types on a keyboard and plugs in a USB stick.


Ballista Projectile Launcher
Team Members: Cody Brelage, Brody Moore, Shawn Troike, and Jenna Voticke
Faculty Advisor: Hossein Alisafaee, PhD, and Dan Marincel, PhD

A ballista-style projectile launcher was designed, fabricated and tested over a five-week period. A lightweight, portable design and 3D-printed parts provided characteristics that improved the device’s performance and maximized user safety.