Nano Nerds



Nanotechnology is a new and exciting field that has opened many doors when it comes to science and engineering. Have you ever experienced a road rash type injury? As it turns out, most people have. Unfortunately, there is no truly convenient off the shelf product that can be used to cover and treat road rash like wounds. Therefore, the goal of team Nano Nerd’s project is create a medical dispenser that can be used in conjunction with a nanoshell medical gel. The gel, while still in the early stages of development, is intended to act as a band aid and healing ointment that can be immediately placed on a road rash injury. Nano Nerd’s dispenser is a convenient and easy way to apply this gel and cure it with the required Near Infrared Light.. The end goal is to illustrate that nano-particles are not simply a work in progress, but rather a working technology that has endless possibilities. Looking at our project, we will be demonstrating our medical device and showing how it can be applied to many different applications.


Phase I Design Inputs

The first step of Phase I was to identify a market need. This raised the question of where an alternative bandage was marketable. The next step was researching the science behind nanotechnology and how we might use it. Once concepts were established on how to use nanotechnology, a hazard identification was performed on all the concepts. This process was completed for both nanotechnology concepts and the tissue welding device. Later in Phase I Project requirement specifications were established and final design concepts were established.


3D printer used to create device

Phase II Design Outputs

Phase I revolved around a design synopsis and the design decisions made the final project outputs. Our team wanted simplicity in the final design to keep the device effective and cheap. The device also needed to be easy for anyone to use. Much like a bandage, instructions are not required to patch a wound.



Device with extra refill cartridge



Case and device painted red with white cross to be identified as a medical device


Phase III Verification and Validation

In Phase III we analyzed our project by making sure it met customer requirement needs and was well built. Our specifications were checked to meet customer needs and the device was checked to meet our specifications. This extensively determined in our Test Plan and Design Control Trace Matrix.



Exploded view of the full assembly

Phase IV Introduction to Manufacturing

The Purpose of Phase IV for this project was determine how the product might be introduced into market. Secondly Phase IV encapsulates our manufacturing process of the prototype and changes moving forward.


ABS plastic center piece next to aluminum machined piece


Manual lathe used to make center piece

Future Aspirations 

The future of this type of device is dictated by the ability of nanoshells to be a viable option for treating road rash injuries. Nanoshells will also need to be made cost effective for users to considered healing wounds with this technology. If a cost effective nanoshell gel can be formulated to fit this application, this device will serve as a viable means to heal road rash type injuries. Some limiting factor may include battery life and nanoshell volume capacity. The device’s infrared light will limit the battery life significantly based on desired light intensity. This light intensity will be determined through trials of curing nanoshell gel.

Meet the Team


Team Captain

Taylor Glasgow’s role in the group is team captain. After graduation in December 2016, he plans to work in the field of renewable energy, preferably photovoltaic. He is currently working for IGT as a mechanical engineering intern. His future aspirations include creating a woodworking shop and building furniture.


Research and Development

Torrey Dion’s role in the group is research and development. After graduation this May, he plans to relocate to the California Bay area. He wants to discover small tech firms and startups that coincide with his engineering mindset. Torrey wants to continue expanding his skills in the product development field. His future aspirations include building an engineering firm specializing in mechanical design, product development, and prototyping.


Drafting and Prototyping

Ryan Gilpin’s role in the group is drafting and prototyping. After graduation this May, he plans to find an engineering position in a company that will allow him to explore one of the branches of engineering that he is interested in. Ryan’s future aspirations include having a job he can walk into everyday with a smile on his face because he loves doing it.


Assistant Captain

Erika Nielsen’s role in the group is assistant captain. After graduation this May, she hopes to focus on renewable energy or biomedical engineering. Her future aspirations include industrial design and traveling.


Technical Writer

After graduation this fall, Erik plans on staying in Reno to pursue jobs regarding automotive or unmanned technology. His future aspirations include working for a defense contractor such as Lockheed Martin or Boeing. In his spare time he enjoys skiing, mountain biking, movies, off-road driving and working on his 1986 Toyota Pickup.