The Alarmed Wheel Chocks will decrease accidents accidents and terminations due to misplacement of wheel chocks. They will reliably notify the operator when the wheel chocks are missing or not placed correctly. They also must perform basic duties that regular chocks do, such as preventing wheel movement in large vehicles.
Proof of Concept
The industry the team plans on expanding into is the safety industry. Big players in the industry include international companies such as Uline and Granger Industrial. These companies have large international bases and supply safety products for many industrial and technical occupations. Many team members have personal backgrounds in areas that require safety gear and have first hand exposure to many of the regulations regarding workplace safety. In preparation to entering the industry, the team performed SWOT analysis on many of the key players and did extensive research into any patents filed regarding technology considered when designing the concept of the product. General buying and distribution patterns for wheel chocks show that during the end of the winter season, more chocks are produces and bought to replace old chocks that have reached the end of their lifespan in the harsh weather.
Team 22A’s Proof of Concept goal was to show that the team could create a system that would yield and alarm when a sensor was moved beyond a set distance. For this, the team used an Arduino microcontroller to collect data in an X, Y and Z axis, paired via Bluetooth with an RF sensor. Once the Arduino was moved beyond a set distance, an alarm was queued from the team’s LabView program. Team 22A’s Proof of Concept test proved successful, and the system will be applied to a set of wheel chocks in the future as a prototype for real-world use.
The final design of the product meets the requirements and standards set by the product design specification. As outlined in the PDS, the product’s primary use and market is for safety in construction sites and high risk job sites. The primary user of the product will be those workers in the high risk job sites that operate heavy machinery. The product also meets all specifications set by both MSHA and OSHA with regards to endorsing and the aid of current regulations. The product also abides by the specifications set by the FCC regarding unlicensed radio spectrum use by industrial, scientific, and medical applications. The use of the arduino board in the product allows for the communication between the wheel chock and the key fob in the event of an improper securing of the work machinery. The product is designed to withstand consistent use in outdoor and industrial environments as specified in the PDS as well as being able to be used effectively and efficiently by a single worker.
The expected outcome of the project is widespread use and a reduction in the injuries caused by improperly secured vehicles in the work space. The secondary purpose of the project is the reduction in costs to businesses as a result of broken equipment and damages sustained due to unsecured heavy machinery in an industrial zone. The project would help reduce both costs and injuries due to improper securing by alerting the operator, via a sound cue from the key fob, if the chocks are not properly placed and secured.
Figure 1: SolidWorks Assembly Drawing
Testing and Results
Meet the Team
Erin Massey grew up in Granite Bay, CA and moved to Reno to attend UNR in 2015. Her most challenging engineering project was inventing inexpensive insulation panels to be put in windows that receive direct sunlight. She was able to create an effective solution using simple items that can be found at the hardware store. Erin currently has an internship at Jensen Metaltech where she creates models for products to be sent to production. Through her academic career, she has greatly improved her communication, time management, and critical thinking skills. Erin intends to pursue a career in test engineering after graduation to work on hands-on engineering projects.
Tyler Campo was born and raised in Roseville, California before moving to Reno in the year of 2015 to pursue an academic career in mechanical engineering at the University of Nevada, Reno. Growing up, one of the main life lessons he was taught was that success comes from hard work and learning from failures. With this in mind, he approaches everything in life from home projects like building a table from scratch to preparing for exams in his classes. Tyler started his career in the workforce at Finance of America Mortgage LLC where he served as a Compliance Intern. Over the course of four summers, he learned about the internal controls that a company needs. Through his experiences at the University of Nevada, Reno and in the workplace he has improved his communication abilities, recognized the real-life applications of studied concepts, and increased his knowledge about the field of Engineering. In the future, Tyler hopes to study and redesign the mechanical aspects of automobiles.
Kyle O’Donnell was born and raised in central Nevada before moving to Reno to attend UNR in 2014. He was raised in a family of skilled laborers, and learned skills through hands on experience with heavy machinery and vehicles through family business, which led to his interest in mechanical engineering. Typical engineering projects that Kyle worked on included anchoring and moving heavy drilling machinery on steep mountain sides in order to help improve the family business. Kyle worked as a mechanical engineering intern at Kinross Gold Corporation over summer 2018 in which he was under the direct mentorship of the lead mechanical engineer on a $240 million dollar expansion project. In the future, Kyle intends on pursuing a career in mechanical design implementation to perform field work and testing.
Throughout Jake Steffanich’s academic career, he has honed his ability to find solutions to engineering based problems. Whether it be simple fixes around the house or textbook problems, he has developed very strong problem-solving skills while studying this discipline. Jake is 22 years old and from Las Vegas, Nevada. As an undergraduate, Jake is striving to branch out and make contacts and friends in as many sectors as he can to expand his job horizon as well as develop useful connections in the professional world. After graduation, Jake plans on designing something that his mind created, hopefully a rollercoaster.
Henry Grace was born and raised in Roseville, California before leaving in 2015 to pursue an undergraduate degree in mechanical engineering at the University of Nevada, Reno. Throughout his academic coursework, Henry has learned to think critically, communicate effectively, and take each problem one step at a time. Outside of school Henry works on his old car, performing maintenance and rebuilding parts. As an undergraduate, Henry’s goals are focused on expanding his education with a graduate degree and make contacts in his field. Beyond education, Henry’s goal is to use his knowledge and technical skill to design and create technologies to further explore the universe.