The culmination of the spring semester’s Interprofessional Projects (IPRO) Program was held on IPRO Day on April 26 when nearly 100 IPRO teams exhibited their semester-long work throughout Hermann Hall. Dedicated panels of workplace professionals, faculty, and graduate students spent the day judging the IPRO projects, and voting on the best exhibits.
The IPRO Program would like to thank all of the students, faculty, Illinois Tech partners, guests, judges, and sponsors for making this the best IPRO Day yet.
Following the exhibit judging, IPRO Day participants gathered in the Hermann Hall EXPO for the closing award ceremony where the winners of the Dean’s Choice and the Top Tracks were announced (see below for results).
In addition to announcing the student project awards, a moment was also taken to honor and thank Thomas Jacobius, director of IPRO operations, for his 24 years of exemplary leadership in the IPRO Program and 42 years of service to the university. To honor his exceptional contribution, an inaugural faculty award was unveiled: The Thomas Jacobius Award for Excellence in IPRO Instruction. The award will be presented every semester to recognize an exemplary IPRO full-time faculty member who strives to embody the interdisciplinary and collaborative spirit of the IPRO program. This semester’s awardee for spring 2019 is Mahesh Krishnamurthy, associate professor of electrical and computer engineering, who has taught in the IPRO program for many years and has been consistently recognized by the students for his teaching style and mentorship. This semester Krishnamurthy instructed two IPRO teams, IIT Motorsports and The NASA Robotic Mining Competition. Congratulations!
Dean’s Choice Awards
- Lewis College of Human Sciences: 10C. Boccia Team: A transportable court system for the adaptive Boccia sports team. This project is inspired by the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab. (New)
- Stuart School of Business: 6C. Pretzel: This team aims to improve financial literacy through an engaging digital format, i.e., a mobile game simulating life.
- Armour College of Engineering: 4E. All-Sky Camera with Adler Planetarium Focus on Instrumentation & Data Management: This project is a collaboration with Adler Planetarium, supported by Motorola Solutions Foundation. The overall team has been tasked with creating an all-sky camera for the purpose of measuring light pollution in the night sky. The instrumentation and data management teams are working in parallel to develop their own devices and data pathways for them. The third team, focusing on a citizen science strategy, has developed the network for future distribution and integration of these devices with local STEM partners, including high schools. (New)
- School of Architecture: 12C: Dream Team: In collaboration with the Environmental Law & Policy Center, this project team aims to create an extremely transitory, interactive, flexible creative gallery exhibition experience within the Chicago Pedway system. At its core, the gallery represents an armature, employed to host eclectic ensembles of exhibitions always in flux and never permanent. The proposed intervention explores concepts of flexibility and disrupts the daily flow in space, creating interactions among people. Movable walls along the ceiling of the pedway create a field of spaces within it. A modular system along the ceiling creates varying spaces within the pedway that interact with elements within the existing space. While retaining the functionality of the pedway, art work along the walls and adjacent to partitions of the pedway elevates the subterranean experience.
- College of Science: 11A. Red Cross Enterprise Analytics: This represents one of three projects in collaboration with American Red Cross, sponsored by Motorola Solutions Foundation. This project offers a collection of tools that facilitate obtaining, saving and sorting disaster-related tweets as well as a web front-end. Collected tweets are analyzed and filtered based on an internally developed text classification model in order to better understand patterns associated with fire emergencies. (Continuing)
- School of Applied Technology: 1F. NASA RMC Team: Scientists have found that Mars has frozen water beneath its soil. The NASA Robotic Mining Competition (RMC) prompts university-level teams to design robotic prototypes capable of navigating the martian surface and mining this frozen water. Here at Illinois Tech, Scarlet Spacehawks presents Clive, a robot designed to autonomously navigate extraterrestrial environments and mine for frozen water below the soil using its featured ice auger. (Continuing)
Track 1: “Make No Small Plans”
- Winner—1E. VTOL: The VTOL team designed a heavy lift vertical takeoff and landing aircraft with a 30-mile range, 2-kg payload and advanced reconnaissance capability. (New)
- Honorable Mention – 1D. IIT Motorsports: IIT Motorsports team has developed a high performance, single-seat Formula-style vehicle as its entry in the Spring 2019 SAE International Formula Hybrid Competition. (Continuing)
Track 2: Home is Where the Heart is
- Winner—2G. IPROPonics: A consumer friendly, modular Hydroponic Gardening Kit that is simple to use, self-sufficient, and can grow food, flowers or houseplants indoors throughout the year while using very little space. (New)
Track 3: Local Sustainable Solutions to Global Challenges
- Winner—3D. Agricultural Effects on Indian Air Quality: The aim of this project is to address the disastrous air quality problem in the region of New Delhi that kills millions of people each year. By targeting improvements in farming, a major source of this pollution, and reducing the amount of potential pesticide drift in the atmosphere, we believe we have an intuitive, yet effective, solution. We have constructed a prototype of the product and show these results backed by several additional studies, indicating promise. (New)
Track 4: Museums + STEM = Inspiration!
- Winner—4A. All-Sky Camera with Adler Planetarium: Focus on Instrumentation & Data Management: This project is a collaboration with Adler Planetarium, supported by Motorola Solutions Foundation. The overall team has been tasked with creating an all-sky camera for the purpose of measuring light pollution in the night sky. The instrumentation and data management teams are working in parallel to develop their own devices and data pathways for them. The third team, focusing on a citizen science strategy, has developed the network for future distribution and integration of these devices with local STEM partners, including high schools. (New)
- Honorable Mention—4C. STEM & African Penguin Exhibit: Alpha: Lincoln Park Zoo is in the process of developing innovative exhibits that educate and enhance the guest experience. STEM Team Penguin, sponsored by Motorola Solutions Foundation, aims to develop a life-size African Penguin exhibit, to display life-like features of African Penguins. African Penguins rarely make an appearance in public at the zoo, so the purpose of an African Penguin statue is to fill the void when visitors are visiting the zoo and there aren’t any African Penguins in sight. The display incorporates the autonomy of African Penguins to educate our age group about STEM. The statue of the African Penguin will have natural feathers that kids can feel and communicate fun facts about African Penguins. (New)
Track 5: Improving Quality of Life
- Winner—5D. Public Health: Emergency rooms are flooded by people who cannot afford to go to the doctor for checkups or are too inconvenienced to use primary care facilities. This makes the entire healthcare system inefficient and more expensive for everyone.The team is developing an information service system concept that identifies locations in communities that administer basic, preventative health care in a comfortable and safe setting. This information service system reduces the number of people going to the emergency room for preventative care and thereby increases the health and wellness of the neighborhood. (New)
Track 6: Managing Life Experiences
- Winner—6D. Equip Your Vision: This team aims to empower people to effectively manage their devices to reduce adverse health effects. Home, school and work environments are heavily technology based. People view screens and displays for significant portions of their day and may often suffer from eye strain and other tension as a result. Our concept creates a device that is convenient and easy to use to ease the everyday strain due to use of technology. (New)
- Honorable Mention—6E. Healthify: A service that connects students facing stress, burnout, or other mental challenges. It connects grad students, who will serve as mentors, with the student population that faces these challenges. (New)
Track 7: Solar Powered
- Winner—7G. Li-Ion Thermal Management System: Thermal runaway is a major problem facing the Li-Ion battery industry. To prevent thermal runaway and optimize efficiency, battery systems need active cooling to keep batteries operating at their ideal operating temperature. The team created a modular thermal management system for use in a residential photovoltaic power system. (Continuing)
- Honorable Mention—7D. Battery Storage: A comprehensive summary for finding the most optimal way to capture solar energy from panels to then be stored efficiently and cost-effectively for later use in off-grid households. The project showcases the team’s methodology and findings to illustrate all the design considerations that went into the process of designing battery storage system. (Continuing)
Track 8: Inventions that Rock!
- Winner—8E. Potnia: This project represents a smart pot plant that will notify a group of care-taking users of the plant’s environment, including light, temperature and humidity. (New)
Track 9: Tools for School, Etc.
- Winner—9D. Environments for Chicago 2050: This team’s focus is on environmental change from 2019 to 2050. What is the City doing to improve Chicago’s environment and what “actors” is it ignoring? The two actors that are being ignored are bees and children. We envision Chicago in 2050 if it focuses on our two actors:
• FUTURE ACTOR #1: A bee highway system offers a network of green spaces and green roofs throughout Chicago that will help make bees in Chicago a tourist attraction and a destination for visitors to “see the bee” highway and walk away with honey and other “souvenir bee keepers.”
• FUTURE ACTOR #2: Pollution is purposefully removed from the south and southeast side of Chicago where it currently is the most prevalent. The Robo-Guardian system represents a child-like robot living in a neighborhood, acting as the guardian for all the child residents. The robot possesses early-warning child-like organs that detect pollution and are affected by it before a child would be. (New)
- Track 10: Innovating Solutions to Meet Life Challenges – 10C. Boccia Team: A transportable court system for the adaptive Boccia sports team. This project is inspired by the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab. (New)
- Honorable Mention—10D. Sled Hockey: This concept improves the Sled Hockey experience for people with disabilities. This project is inspired by the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab. (New)
- Track 11: Enabling Public Safety—11A. Red Cross Enterprise Analytics: This represents one of three projects in collaboration with American Red Cross, sponsored by Motorola Solutions Foundation. This project offers a collection of tools that facilitate obtaining, saving and sorting disaster-related tweets as well as a web front-end. Collected tweets are analyzed and filtered based on an internally developed text classification model in order to better understand patterns associated with fire emergencies. (Continuing)
- Honorable Mention—11D. POEMS (Power over Ethernet Master Solutions): Inadequate disaster alert and visual evacuation systems for commercial and public buildings has led this project team to pioneer the development of a centralized system in collaboration with Hubbell, Inc. This includes a fire sensor and visual LED alert system that alerts first responders to the fire location(s) using a Power over Ethernet System and room LED’s. The system will also guide occupants in safely evacuating the building. (Continuing)
- Honorable Mention—11G. Energy Efficiency Strategies for Chicago Buildings: The team conducted an energy audit of the Provident Hospital Chicago as part of the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) National Green Energy Challenge competing against 35 universities across the United Stares and Canada. The audit included lighting, heating and cooling, solar, and other areas of energy usage. The team made recommendations for improvement. (Continuing)
- Track 12: Renovate Chicago—12B. Trees for Brownfields: Trees for Brownfields: Industrial pollution and improper waste disposal practices have created large swaths of land in the Chicago Region that are polluted and constrict normal uses. This project aims to create beneficial uses for Chicago’s brownfields through bioremediation with plants and trees. (New)
- Track 13: Tourism +Leisure—13E. Laser Tag in the Pedway: The Chicago Pedway is a fragmented network of public space with some portions that close for the night. In collaboration with the Environmental Law & Policy Center, this project team aims to repurpose these areas as a public entertainment asset at night, transforming the zones into laser tag arenas. (New)