Miller—Pulsejet engine. A jet engine discharges a fast moving efflux of gas
that generates thrust in accordance with Newton’s third law. In a pulsejet engine, thrust is generated by combustion that occurs
in pulses. I adjusted inlet geometry, outlet geometry, and fuel-to-air
ratio to determine the effect on thrust.
Rachel Haas—Lift and drag of an
airfoil. Aircraft are designed for a variety of
purposes, such as transporting passengers, flying stealth missions, and
militarily engaging an enemy. No single airfoil design is optimal for all
purposes. Rachel tested the following airfoil types: NACA 2515, 0015, and
6716. My project is related to my summer internship at Raytheon.
and the Pioneer Anomaly. Pioneer 10
and Pioneer 11 are two spacecraft NASA sent to the outer Solar System in
the 1970s. The Pioneer anomaly is a small discrepancy between the actual
path and the path predicted by classical physics. Thie
discrepancy can be explained by adding a small additional acceleration
toward the Sun. One proposed explanation lies in Einstein’s theory of
general relativity, which I used to calculate the theoretical positions
of the spacecraft while they passed Jupiter. My results showed moderate
agreement with the experimental data.
Satterfield—The proper motion of the neutron star
in Cassiopeia A. I used data from the
high-resolution camera on the Chandra X-ray observatory to measure the
proper motion of the neutron star in Cassiopeia A
over 10 years. My measurements indicate a motion of 400 m/s in a
south/southeast direction. This motion is consistent with the inferred
proper motion based on the offset of the neutron star from the center of
the expansion of the optical ejecta. I
gratefully acknowledge NASA’s support for my project.
Kyle Allard—Pulsed Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy of
Organic Compounds. The pulsed NMR
apparatus allows two types of investigations: relaxation time analysis
and spectra of atoms in magnetic fields. I measured solutions of various
concentrations, molecular dynamics, and ionization states. Solution
structure is a method for atomic-resolution of structure of
macromolecules dissolved in water or membranes. Molecular dynamics is a
technique for quantifying motion of macromolecules. Ionization state
measurements determine the chemical properties of macromolecules. I also
made measurements of hydrogen-rich materials such as glycerin versus
Biggs—Impurity diffusion of cesium in silver chloride. Impurity diffusion involves movement of an impurity from a
high-concentration area to a lower-concentration area. Chris placed a
drop of solution containing radioactive cesium-137 on a cube of silver
chloride and then placed the cube in a furnace. After several hours, he
removed the cube, ground the top surface, and measured the radioactivity
as a function of depth from the top to obtain a penetration profile. Norm
obtained the activation energy by comparing penetration profiles at
Johnson—Footfall energy harvesting.
When a person is walking, power is expended at about 324 W, but only about
25% of this energy produces useful leg output. Other outputs include arm
motion, breathing, and heat exhaled. My objective is to design a device
to harvest a portion of the remaining 75% to charge
a battery and power a cell phone. I modified a pair of shoes to retract
alternating cables on each footfall. I designed a transmission box to
convert the cable motion to rotational motion to generate electrical
power to charge a battery. Design limitations include low power output;
low durability of the modified shoes, and the user’s range of motion is
Heather Graffius—Kelvin’s thunderstorm and the breakdown
potential of air. My device uses two
streams of water falling through the air to produce static discharges
similar to lightning in a thunderstorm. I measured spark rate for
different spark gaps as a function of water flow rate. I used my results
to calculate the breakdown of the electric field of air. Heather is
studying for an M.S. in Atmospheric Physics at Creighton University.
turbine efficiency. I investigated the
idea of improving the efficiency of a hydroelectric generator system by
placing additional turbines in series to capture energy from the water
that the previous turbine did not capture. I found that each successive
turbine generates less power, so that the investment in the first turbine
is most cost effective. Jason is studying for an M.S. in Civil
Engineering at WVU.
Bartleman—Efficiency of a scale model oscillating water column. Water wave energy is one of the most
underutilized forms of renewable energy. One design is called the
oscillating water column, in which waves enter a tube, causing pressure
oscillations that rive a turbine. My scale model used a motor to produces
waves. Input variables included motor power, wave height, wave frequency,
equilibrium water depth, and wave pressure. I measured the effect of each
of these on output power. Tom is working toward an M.S. in Civil
Engineering at Stanford University.
Roberts—Organic photo-voltaics. I investigated the efficiency of new organic photovoltaic
technology with different doping. I also investigated the effect on
efficiency of thin film silicon photovoltaics
after irradiation by a femtosecond laser.
Hughes—Raman spectroscopy of polymers. When
a laser encounters a material, the scattered wavelength has a different
wavelength that the incident wavelength, an observation called the Raman
effect. Raman measurements give information on the material’s molecular
bonding. I used a nitrogen laser and a Nd:Yag laser to make Raman spectroscopy studies
of four polymers: high-density polyethylene, polyhexamethylene
Denny Vincent—The flow of fracking fluid through geological formations. Denny’s objective was to determine the rate water flowed through a
horizontal cross section of clear PVC pipe that simulated flow in the
Marcellus shale geological formation. Denny applied the Navier-Stokes equation to simulate advanced drilling
conditions in the petroleum industry. Denny is a natural gas field
engineer at Weatherford.
Matthew Edwards—Non-lethal kinetic
ammunition. My study involved projectiles from firearms
designed to incapacitate a person without causing permanent damage. I
evaluated baton rounds, beanbags, fin stabilized rubber projectiles,
multi-ball rounds, and sponge grenades. I made my target using ballistic
gelatin and latex to simulation of human tissue and skin. I measured the
impact velocity, acceleration, and impact area. If the latex was
penetrated, I measured the penetration depth. I calculated the energy
density, pressure, and the Blunt Criterion Rating. I was able to evaluate
the lethality of each type of projectile when fired at distances of 5,
10, and 15 yards.
Powell—Efficiency analysis of a compressed-air power system. The control system of a nuclear power plant requires electricity.
In an emergency, the control system may require a backup source of
electricity. I investigated compressed air as a source of energy for
generating backup electricity. A backup system should have reasonably
good energy efficiency, so I studied a compressed air power system’s
efficiency as a function of air pressure.
Defibaugh— Efficiency of an air conditioning system powered by a solar
panel. Solar panels convert free energy from the Sun
into electrical energy with no greenhouse gases. Recent developments have
made solar panels more economically competitive. I measured the energy
losses in a system consisting of a solar panel with backup batteries an
air conditioner as a function of cooling rate.
Wes Marsh—Improving internal
combustion efficiency using electrolysis. Electrolysis involves separating water into hydrogen and oxygen by
using electrical current. Wes introduced the gases into a gasoline engine
and measured the effect on thermodynamic efficiency.
Kate Turner—Production of copper-61
using a proton-induced nuclear reaction on zinc for PET imaging. To produce the protons to induce this reaction, I placed paraffin
blocks over the opening of an americium/beryllium neutron source. The
bombardment of neutrons on hydrogen-rich paraffin produces a nuclear
reaction that produces protons. The protons are then irradiated onto a
zinc foil. A gamma detector and a silicon surface-barrier detector are
interfaced to Spec-Tech software to record the copper-1 spectrum.
Rogers—Thermal neutron absorption and fast neutron analysis. Chera studies neutron absorption by several materials using an
americium-beryllium neutron source. She also studied fast neutron
analysis using neutron-proton reaction. Chera is pursuing an M.S. in
Medical Physics at the University of Cincinnati.
Wilson—Cell kill rates in HT1080 cancer cells irradiated with cesium-137. My objective was to use cesium-137 to induce chromosome breaking
in cancer cells. Chromosome breaking occurs when a high energy particle
encounters deoxyribonucleic acid and destroys the bonds that hold the
chromosome together. I used the linear model of cell kill rate, which is
applied to the fast-growing cells in tumors. I grew my cells in MEM and
glutamate. I irradiated them for 2 hours at 6.86 rads.
I used a centrifuge to isolate the cells and counted the number of
Thomas Holtschneider—Boron neutron capture therapy. The ideal cancer treatment would destroy all
turmor cells without damaging normal tissue. But real cancer therapy
damages healthy tissue. Using boron capture therapy, damage to healthy
tissues may be reduced. I irradiated boron carbine with neutrons from an
americium-beryllium alpha source. I determined the energy of the neutrons
produced and the stopping power.