This pathway connects the ASK, IMAGINE, PLAN, CREATE, & IMPROVE engineering design process with real world learning. Workforce connections include professional sharing in a public power environment, using digital design and iteration, material testing and procedures like Lock Out Tag Out, and a culture of safety.
Foundation

Open Sourced Learning

Pathway: Engineering Design w/ 3D Printing

Having a shared learning community is essential in today's fast paced world. Public power by nature is a shared community where ideas, safety tips, lessons learned, and new innovations are shared to benefit the public. This activity utilizes shared learning communities to help you learn the basics of 3D printing correlated with workforce skills including the "Ask" and the "Imagine" stages of the engineering design process.

Intro to Open Sourced Learning

Find out what open sourced learning means in a classroom and in the utility industry. Using the shared knowledge of a learning community inspires you to "ASK" questions and "IMAGINE" new ideas - the first two stages of the engineering design process.

Innovation is taking place all around you - especially in the utility industry. Public Power is a unique partnership between energy providers, service providers, consumers, and other public power organizations! Your task is to explore some of these partnerships to discover how public power utilizes the idea of "open sourced learning" to improve electrical safety, electrical efficiency, and electrical service.


1. Visit - http://eprijournal.com - this is a publication from the Electric Power Research Institute. While you are there find one innovative project that excites you and record some basic information in your engineering journal.

2. Visit - the American Public Power Associations DEED Digest to see what energy related sharing is going on. Pick two projects and write down 3 questions you have about the innovations in the articles.

3. Visit your local utility website and search for innovation happing right in your area. If you need a place to start visit NPPD.com's Powering Innovation page. Sketch out an idea that has been inspired by one of the projects in your local area.

Using 3D Repositories

Where to go to get inspired.

1. Visit ThingiVerse 

2. Search on the term "electricity" and explore the possibilities - record any projects you are interested in by sketching a quick picture and recording the thingiverse.com information.

3. Search on a term of your choice and explore the possibilities - record any projects in your engineering notebook.

4. After selecting a few potential projects - ASK yourself questions about each one - recording them in the notebook. Questions such as "how big is this thing?" "Where could I use it?" etc.


Introduction to Afinia H800 Printer

The NPPD STEM Connections Lab utilizes the Afinia H800 printer. Please review their overview video before you print!



ANALOG

Notebook Scale & Design

Pathway: Engineering Design w/ 3D Printing

Learning the "PLAN" stage of the engineering design process through a challenging reverse engineering project. Get your hands on an electrical insulator and see if you can replicate it using the engineering process - in reverse!

Engineering Notebook Example

Engineering notebooks are essential in many technical careers. 

Reverse Engineering Challenge

Description Here

1. examine the object to be reverse engineered

2. using the calipers and rulers measure the primary structure

3. Scale the object to a size that will fit within your engineering notebook then sketch and label the object

4. Observe the object to determine if it is one solid structure or made of multiple pieces. If it is made of multiple pieces do your best to draw each piece individually - including how the pieces fit together.

1. examine the object to be reverse engineered

2. using the calipers and rulers measure the primary structure

3. Scale the object to a size that will fit within your engineering notebook then sketch and label the object

4. Observe the object to determine if it is one solid structure or made of multiple pieces. If it is made of multiple pieces do your best to draw each piece individually - including how the pieces fit together.

DIGITAL

Tinkering is a Skill!

Pathway: Engineering Design w/ 3D Printing

Iterations in the digital world not only improve efficiency it also saves resources. In this activity you will utilize the DESIGN stage of the engineering process and learn to use digital software to design your product.

TinkerCAD introduction video

The NPPD STEM Connections Lab utilizes the free TinkerCAD software. This video will give you a quick introduction on how to use TinkerCAD for your STEM Connections projects

LOGIC

Procedures in 3D

Pathway: Engineering Design w/ 3D Printing

3D printing seems easy - when it works. To avoid sticky situations in the utility industry, we plan for possible challenges. Your task is to create a flow chart that will incorporate the steps for a successful print and at least 3 contingency plans for possible problems that you might face during the printing process.

Draw IO

Check out this free flow chart design app and create your own flowchart!

DATA

It's a Material World

Pathway: Engineering Design w/ 3D Printing

One of the biggest potential gains in wind power rides on the engineering design of the blades. Longer. Stronger. More efficient. These are all challenges you can TEST during this phase of the engineering design process.

  1. Use the Build a Tower blueprint to create a testing unit
  2. Design and print two different blade sets
  3. Test efficiency with digital multi-meter

The Power of Wind

How is electricity made from wind?

Build a Turbine Blueprints

Here is what you need to build your scale model wind turbine!

INNOVATION

Improvement = Innovation

Pathway: Engineering Design w/ 3D Printing

The engineering design process doesn't exclusively take place on the development of new inventions. Our challenge in the energy industry isn't to dream of the next big thing - it is to continuously improve existing processes, while working towards the next big thing! Take this challenge to improve upon an existing product using the entire engineering process and implementing your new ideas!

The Process of Innovation

It is not as easy as Invent then get rich. The innovation process is just that a process. Using the 3D printer prototype improvements to your best blade design!