Combining renewable energy and design-for-manufacturing research in an undergraduate research project

John T. Tester

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Northern Arizona University's (NAU) College of Engineering and Technology (CET) is integrating the traditional topics involved in design-for-manufacturing research and education with the re-emerging field of renewable energy. In particular, student research projects were conducted for the optimization of injection molding process parameters for a small wind turbine blade to produce the fewest manufacturing defects. The defect of interest was "warp" - the level of part distortion predicted after the molding process. Deviation from the designed turbine blade geometry degrades the predicted energy output far the system, thus inspiring this research. The research activities involved manufacturing simulation and design-of-experiments (DOE) in order to create and examine a mathematical response surface. Presented herein is a background to the NAU Sustainable Energy Solutions research and education activities, the particular problem formulation for the undergraduate research, the educational approach necessary to support the undergraduate researchers, the implementation of the research activities, and the project outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)S1E10-S1E15
JournalProceedings - Frontiers in Education Conference
StatePublished - 2003
EventEngineering as a Human Endeavor: Partnering Community, Academia, Government, and Industry - Westminster, CO, United States
Duration: Nov 5 2003Nov 8 2003


  • DFM
  • DOE
  • Design of Experiments
  • Injection molding
  • Renewable Energy
  • Simulation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Education
  • Computer Science Applications


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