Integrated System Build & Test
Table of Contents
Team Vision for Integrated System Build & Test Phase
During this phase of the design the team planned to work through most of our system build and begin testing and validating the systems functionality. The schedule below details the plans that our team had for design completion at the end of our last design review.
After this discussion, the team was able to make good progress developing the remainder of the build materials and prepared all the system parts to be welded. Upon departure for spring break on 3/9/2020 the team had established a welding schedule to begin development of the main system parts. At this point it was understood that the team would likely be behind the planned schedule and would need to do most of the system testing during the final build phase. However, at this point there was no reason to believe the project could not be completed as planned. During the beginning of the system build, team members were also working through the completion of the technical paper and the poster for the established design. Our team was able to complete approximately 75% of the paper with a draft ready for review on 4/9. The team also successfully completed a rough draft of the imagine RIT poster. However, during the break, the team was informed that spring break would be extended considering the COVID 19’ pandemic, at which point the build progress planned was delayed. The team initially planned to reschedule our welding activities and crash the project to ensure the finished system could be built. At this point, there was still no reason for the team to believe the project would not be completed by the end of the semester.
This was until unexpected changes in the semester plan resulted in campus closures for the remainder of the semester. As a result of campus closures, our team reworked our semester schedule for the phase and came to the difficult decision that the finished prototype would not be able to be completed. Rather, a revised semester plan was created to document the teams progress and create a manufacturing plan for the next team to work through the articulating toilet design.
Below is a list of activities put on hold as a result of the campus closure.
In light of the inability to complete these activities, our team created a revised semester schedule to ensure all project progress up until the campus closure was documented. Below is the revised schedule that was established considering the circumstances. The team was able to successfully complete all activities shown below and intends to continue progressing
As discussed, the manufacturing of this prototype is unable to be completed this semester. Instead, a manufacturing manual will be created to guide any future teams in manufacturing this design. The manual will include a drawings package for manufacturing at the component level, an explanation of the welding plan for subsystem manufacturing, and a final assembly manual to get the prototype to a functional state. Critical design details and high risk manufacturing steps will be highlighted to give future manufacturers the best chance to create a successful prototype.
One design detail in particular is critical for this prototype to function well. While the vertical position and mass is supported by the hydraulic pistons, the bearings constrain the seat for the remaining degrees of freedom. The gap between the bearings and the surface that they ride on must be kept as small as possible to keep the seat level and minimize play or tilting that could lead to discomfort or binding of the system.
There are several measures in place to ensure that the bearings are positioned as close to the rails as possible. First, when welding the box tube that makes up the seat structure, the seat plate can be used as a guide to position the steel tubes accurately. The seat plate is cut from a sheet of steel using the waterjet, so the positions of the holes should be accurate. The figures below show how the tubes fit together on the steel plate.
To account for any dimensional variations that result from the welding process, the frame can be welded using the seat structure as a guide. The upper cross bar of the frame defines the distance between the vertical frame rails, which needs to match the positioning of the bearings on the seat. When welding the brackets onto the upper cross bar, brackets should be bolted onto the vertical frame rails and the frame rails should be positioned onto the bearings as shown in the figures below. This should ensure that the bearings provide a consistent ride on the rails.
The full manufacturing manual document can be viewed by clicking here.
Risk and Problem TrackingThroughout the duration of this phase, the team was able to add to the list of risks for MSD 2. We came up with 10 additional risks, bringing our current total for MSD 2 to 40. The majority of the new risks that we came up with were related to the school closing early due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The live risk document can be seen by clicking here.
During this phase, the team was able to close out a few of the problems that were encountered in previous phases. However, we did run into an additional 4 risks that manifested themselves into problems. The problems that we ran into are as follows:
- A global pandemic occurs, which halts team production and greatly affects MSD.
- Team is no longer able to meet in person.
- RIT closes for the rest of the semester.
- Imagine RIT is canceled.
The live problem tracking document can be seen by clicking here.
Budget/Bill of MaterialsDuring this phase, no additional parts or materials were purchased. The team had initially planned on purchasing a part for the back support component of our design. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the university was closed for the rest of the semester, which led to all prototyping and building being concluded. Given this, no additional parts or materials are going to be purchased and we were able to finalize our bill of materials and our budget. During MSD, the team spent $310.20 of the $500 budget, leaving $189.80 left. The live bill of materials document can be seen by clicking here.
Plans for next phase
Moving into the final phase of the project, our team has a lot to accomplish in order to ensure the future of this project is successful. It is anticipated that another team will adopt this project, as a successful build was not possible given our circumstance.
The majority of the next phase of this project will include detailed documentation of our teams intended build and test plans, as well as detailed steps as to how to complete what our team had hoped to accomplished this semester.
The below schedule has been established to ensure all of the remaining documentation is possible before the final deadline of 4/23.
As the semester has moved online, the team has established twice weekly meetings on Tuesdays and Thursdays as well as communication as needed through slack to ensure the project documentation proceeds as planned.
Discussed in these meetings were the following 3 week plans for the project team members.