Application of pbl in the course fluid and electrical drive systems, case study: Manufacturing an automated punch machine
The PBL unit of fluid and electrical drive systems is taught in final semester of undergraduates in mechanical engineering department of the Australian College of Kuwait (ACK). The recent project on an automated punching machine is discovered more appealing to both students and instructors in triggering new ideas and satisfaction end results. In this case study, the way this PBL unit is coordinated and facilitated is explained. Two examples of student works are presented. The aim is to expose the students to real world engineering problems but in a satisfying manner. Similar to real life problems for engineers, restrictions are applied for the students on costs, availability of ACK facilities, and application of automation tools. Students are directly engaged by using technical standards on punching heads and dies, standard tensile testing of plates, and so on. Arduino microprocessor programming, an open-source hardware and software electronic platform, and electro-pneumatic devices are adopted for developing the automated punching machine. The goal of the PBL course is to acquaint students learning based on the concepts of team working, engineering design, professional manufacturing, and sequential testing of the end product. It is found that students achieved their best and developed new skills in this PBL unit as reflected in their portfolios.
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