2019 Team11

Project Overview  |  Proof of Concept  |  Final Design  |  Fabrication  |  Testing and Results  |  Meet the Team  |  Acknowledgements

Project Overview

Team 11 is tasked with designing a modular fluid filtration system for Lincoln Electric’s Torchmate plasma cutting tables. The fluid filtration system needs to filter the cutting fluid of particulates and plasma cutting byproducts to improve the longevity and efficiency of the cutting fluid additive. The system is to be marketed around $1500 dollars so the cost needs to be around $750. This filtration system will need to be scalable in order to be compatible with all current Torchmate water tables. Due to it being used on existing tables, it needs to be freestanding and meet Torchmate specifications.


Proof of Concept

The product being developed belongs to a manufacturing industry that focuses on industrial filtration. Due to the fact that there are no specific CNC water table plasma cutter filtration systems on the market, the competition in this industry is centered around individual producers who create their own homemade filtration systems as well as major industrial filtration system producing companies.  As a team, Plasma Pumps by working with Torchmate, will more easily enter the industry by designing the filtration system specifically as an add-on accessory for Torchmate Tables. Pairing with an already established, large company such as Lincoln Electric and their Torchmate division, means a slightly lower barrier to entry because Plasma Pumps has their assistance in bringing the project to market. Plasma Pumps has also created Product Design Specifications, Functional Decompositions, Design Concepts, and conducted Patent and Literature searches to prepare for the projected industry. Even though there is no direct, specific competition in this industry, there are competing companies. These companies primarily consist of Eaton, Filtrasystems, and Keller Products. These companies specialize in producing filters for the manufacturing industry. Eaton for example had $20.4B in sales in 2017. Through research conducted by Plasma pumps, there are no definitive numbers for buying patterns regarding machining equipment filtration, only that there is an inherent need but with no single specific solution. Despite the large competition, Plasma Pumps seeks to design a filtration system utilizing off the shelf parts. The competing companies products could be utilized by Plasma Pumps’ filtration system as components to an entire system for future usage.


Final design




Testing and Results



Meet the Team

David Hughes

David Hughes is a fourth year Mechanical Engineering student at the University of Nevada, Reno. David was born and raised in Fallon, Nevada. During his time as a student, David has developed skills in Solidworks and using FEA analysis in it, Matlab, and is Autodesk Inventor professional certified.  Using his analytical techniques, he developed a worksheet for his father to use after he came to him for his “math skills”. Instead of it being a one-time solution it turned into a long-term solution that can be used even when David is unavailable with minimal user interaction. One thing he is proud of is giving back to the wrestling community by refereeing high school wrestling here in Nevada. David’s goal is to finish his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering in the Spring of 2019. Following graduation, he plans on pursuing a career as a design engineer for a company located in Northern Nevada.




Dylan Koppenhoefer

Dylan Koppenhoefer is a senior Mechanical Engineering student at the University of Nevada, Reno. He was born and raised in Las Vegas, Nevada. While progressing through his academic career, Dylan has learned how to effectively use Matlab, design control systems and record data in Labview, as well as use manufacturing equipment in the UNR Manufacturing Lab. Dylan was involved in an engineering project in another state that required the design of a sliding motor mount to engage a smaller motor with an antique engine flywheel for ease of starting. He, with the help of 2 previously retired professional engineers, developed a mount and sliding system that could handle the immense forces generated between the heavy equipment and could withstand the environmental elements of coastal california. Outside of school and work, Dylan is proud to volunteer at a therapy horse ranch that assists all age groups with mental, physical, and emotional needs as well as returning soldiers with PTSD. After graduation, Dylan’s goals include working as a design engineer for a manufacturing company and possibly working on with Boeing or Lockheed Martin on their defense aircraft.



Mitchell Van Patten

Mitchell Van Patten is a senior Mechanical Engineering student at the University of Nevada, Reno.  Mitchell was born and raised in Nampa, Idaho. Mitchell has developed several technical skills throughout his academic career including MATLAB and LabView.  Mitchell also attained SOLIDWORKS CSWA certification in October of 2018.  Mitchell has worked as an intern for Outerimpact where he operated a CNC mill.  Mitchell also worked as an intern for Southwest Gas in Carson City, NV where he worked in code compliance operating Field Office Management Systems software, Excel, AutoCAD, and collaborated with professional engineers to design natural gas meter sets and new business distribution plans.  Mitchell is the team captain of the UNR NCAA Rifle Team and has earned many national and conference titles through his collegiate shooting career including All-American and All-Conference honors. After graduation, Mitchell plans to work as a Mechanical Engineer, potentially in the energy, defense, manufacturing, automotive or utilities industries.






Justin Fisher

I am a fifth year senior at the University of Nevada, Reno. Engineering has been utilized in designing stereo systems for people. Making sure the cable is the right size for current to be passed through, calculating what kind of breaker the amplifier needs if there is too much voltage being supplied, and assuming the safety of the amplifier. This is just a portion of what goes into some of the systems that I’ve built but this was some of the hardest things to do. Conceptualizing these systems is  hard because electricity is a very problematic subject for engineers due to all its variables that need to be considered. I had to use my knowledge of systems and elecrical engineering to overcome the problems of the stereo systems I have designed. The use of analytical engineering has saved my clients and myself a lot of money. My academic career has taught me most about evaluating a situation and how to overcome problems from a thorough analysis of them. My electrical knowledge also grew due to the curiosity of the systems that I have built. Having to be a role model my whole life for my younger sisters is an accomplishment. Being a role model has shaped the way I think about my choices and grown into the hard working person that I strive to be everyday. Being a role model that my sisters can look up to is something that I am proud of. My goal right now are to get a internship. After graduation my goal is to be the hardest worker, best attitude person, and be the best at whatever I do or wherever I work, utilizing all of my knowledge to better the company and society.


Nathan Rodrigue

Nathan Rodrigue is a senior Mechanical Engineering student  at the University of Nevada, Reno. Born in Reno, Nathan is a 6th generation Nevadan and is the second generation  in his family to attend UNR. Nathan has worked with the city of sparks Parks and Rec department to improve the quality of local parks. Nathan uses his knowledge of Matlab, AutoCad, and solidworks to design small personal projects. Outside of school, Nathan works part time at a local bar and grill and is actively works during local events such as the Reno Rodeo. Nathan’s goal is to work for an engineering company in Northern Nevada or Northern California.