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2021 Senior Design Symposium

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2020 Senior Design Symposium

Due to the Virginia's Governors Order, Virginia Tech's Grado Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering will be hosting a virtual Senior Design Symposium via ZOOM, on Thursday, April 22.  Please join us for Symposium in the zoom meetings listed in your registration confirmation email.

SYMPOSIUM SCHEDULE
  • Opening Remarks        8:45 am
  • Project Presentations 9:00 a.m. - 12:40 p.m.

The Poster Session Monday, April 19 - Thursday, April 22

ITINERARY
2021 ISE Senior Design Symposium Schedule
SYMPOSIUM INSTRUCTIONS

1. The Symposium will be hosted via Zoom.  In order to attend, registration is required (https://bit.ly/ise-symposium21).  A confirmation email will be sent once registration is complete.  The email includes login information.

2. If you don't have a Zoom account, create it prior to April 22nd.  You can download the Zoom app from the Zoom Download Center (https://zoom.us/download). Otherwise, you will be prompted to download and install Zoom when you click the Join link on your Registration confirmation email.

3. Please update your Zoom to the latest version (5.3.0 or later), so you can move freely between Breakout Rooms.

4. Join the Symposium using your first name and last name.

5. Once you are administered to the Symposium Main room, you can choose to attend the project presentations at any of the 7 Breakout rooms by clicking the Breakout Rooms icon.

6. Each Breakout Room will have a Zoom host and a faculty moderator, who will manage the room and presentation times.

7.  Please mute your computer during all presentations. Each presentation will last for approximately 20 minutes then there will be 5 minutes for Q&A. At this time, feel free to use the chat feature or un-mute your computer to ask any questions to the team that just presented. You can also type your question on the Chat panel.

8. There will be a 5-minute break between presentations for transition.

9. Please a take a moment at the end of each presentation to fill out the feedback survey.

1. You will be prompted to enter the 11-digit meeting ID (in the Confirmation email) and press #.

2. The following commands can be entered via DTMF tones using your phone's dial pad while in a Zoom meeting:

*6 - Toggle mute/unmute
*9 - Raise hand

3. Visit Joining a meeting by phone page on Zoom site for more information.

 

BREAKOUT ROOMS
 TIME TEAM ABSTRACT
9:00 - 9:25 am 
Team 16 - Devils Backbone Brewing
Company
Advisor:  Kwok-Leung Tsui


View Poster  

Devils Backbone Brewing Company, located in Lexington, Virginia, has a need for decreased changeover and ramp-up times to increase consistency and efficiency. Using data analysis and lean manufacturing methods, this project addressed bottlenecks in the changeover process which exhibit inconsistencies. The team implemented detailed communication processes such as Standard Operating Procedures and a Kanban board to improve organization within the process. Starting with data from November 2020, an evolving matrix was created to show changeover times between combinations of products for ongoing analysis. The expected outcome of this project is to create changeover consistency and reduce both changeover and ramp-up duration to an hour and a half.
9:30 - 9:55 am  Team 32 - MedStar Health
Advisor: Alison Knight


View Poster

MedStar Health’s St. Mary’s and Southern Maryland Hospitals, located within 40 miles of each other, contain identical histology laboratories currently experiencing similar inefficiencies surrounding a shortage of qualified personnel and a lack of adequate work volume. While their turnaround times and daily performance rates are acceptable, there is opportunity for improvement in completion quality, equipment, and personnel utilization. After conducting a thorough analysis of both laboratory’s current performance with time studies, spaghetti diagrams, and process maps, the team developed a control simulation model in Simio to discover process bottlenecks as an optimal improvement solution among other alternatives including laboratory consolidation. Other solution alternatives were modeled in Simio to address the bottlenecks and make meaningful comparisons. The team’s recommendation was to consolidate both laboratories at St. Mary’s Hospital based on key metrics such as a 66% reduction in worker pressure and a 53% reduction in laboratories’ bottlenecks. If implemented, MedStar Health can expect an 8-12% improvement in turnaround time and client-estimated wage and machinery savings of $10,000 to $100,000.
10:00 - 10:25 am  Team 30 - Medeco / ASSA ABLOY
Advisor:  Zhenyu "James" Kong


View Poster

Medeco, a high security key system manufacturer, is suffering from diminished capacity from underutilized employees and improperly allocated tasks. To address this problem, Medeco requested that the team redesign the XT Intelligent line, a specialized electronic lock line, to increase throughput by a minimum of 30% without requiring any additional labor. Our team identified and addressed bottlenecks through task allocation and labor assignments. We developed a tool to calculate the labor hours required to achieve the daily demand, and designed a supplementary station to further alleviate the bottleneck through decreasing takt time. The application of the new labor and line configurations is expected to increase the line’s throughput by an average of 39% and reduce the yearly labor hours required by 8% to save the company $8,100,000 over the next three years.
10:30 - 10:55 am  Team 1 - Abbott Nutrition
Advisor:  John Shewchuk


View Poster

Abbott’s Ready-to-Hang (RTH) line’s robot machinehas frequent downtime due to machinefailures. The project consisted of performing a rootcause analysis (RCA), developing atroubleshooting guide, and making recommendationsfor machine investments and manpowerhours reduction. The result of this project is estimatedto be a reduction of Abbott’s downtime by20%. If implemented, the project recommendations couldresult in a cost reduction of $150,000and a final sales gain of $900,000 due to increasedefficiency in troubleshooting commonmachine failure modes.
10:55 - 11:10 am BREAK  
11:10 - 11:35 am Team 33 - Moog
Advisor: Matt Earnest


View Poster

The Virginia Tech Learning Factory, an extension of the Grado Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, aims to provide an experiential learning environment for Industry 4.0 technology. The opportunity for this project is to showcase the capacity of the Learning Factory as a hand-on educational facility. With support and resources from our sponsor Moog, Aspen, the team assembled six manufacturing workstations to function as a Lean training cell within the Learning Factory. The team also developed a training course focused on hands-on applications of Lean principles through the assembly of a multi-tool. The training curriculum meets all customer requirements and through the assembly of the multi-tool, the participants demonstrated proficiency in applying all course learning objectives. This project benefits the Grado Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering by enhancing student learning opportunities, increasing awareness of the Learning Factory capabilities, and delivering a highly-marketable product with potential revenue of $21,600 a year in classes to external organizations.
11:40 am - 12:05 pm Team 23 - Lokar Inc.
Advisor:  Michael Madigan
 

View Poster 

Lokar is a manufacturer based in Knoxville, TN that produces aftermarket performance products for automobiles. Lokar has expanded its business model and has tasked us with optimizing its pick-pack-ship process to keep up with demand. We began by analyzing their entire procedure, pinpointing areas in need of improvement, and suggesting either products or procedures to rectify them. Using our recommendations, Lokar has purchased a scanner, a scale, and built a cart using a template that we designed for them. Additionally, they have completely rearranged their shipping area to utilize a series of roller tables and conveyor belts so that once a box is packed it never has to be lifted. Our efforts resulted in a noticeable boost in productivity in the form of greater employee efficiency, a tidier work environment, safer employee work practices, and fewer errors in outgoing shipments.
12:10 - 12:35 pm Team 44 - VT Advanced Engineering Design Lab
Advisor:  Kenneth Harmon


View Poster

The Advanced Engineering Design Lab houses 11 student design teams in the areas of rocketry, drone technology, aircraft technology and turbine energy in 6,500 sq. ft. of a 20,800 sq. ft. facility. By optimizing the space currently available and creating a methodology to be used to utilize the space in years to come, the design lab can expand into the available space as the requirements of the space evolve.  Producing 2D CAD drawings of the entire facility, redesigning the potential expanded space to fit additional engineering design teams, and creating a method in which to gather feedback from design teams about equipment and space, builds a reliable foundation for the success of any engineering student that wishes to gain hands-on experience in the lab. As a result of this project, the client can expect an increase in investment capital, capacity, and utilization while increasing the competitiveness of Virginia Tech design teams.
 TIME TEAM ABSTRACT
9:00 - 9:25 am 
 Team 17 - Duke Health
Advisor:  Weijun Xie


View Poster

Performance Services supports Duke Health's initiatives by improving processes within the hospitals. Their Patient Flow team has encountered problems in predicting surges in demand for service, and being unable to treat patients because they do not have space. This project analyzes the conditions surrounding these high occupancy days and diagnoses the leading factors in those surges in demand. The goal of the project is to provide Performance Services with a protocol to better handle patient flow decisions when these surges are expected. The implementation of this protocol is expected to improve patient care, decrease the occurrence of over-capacity days from 4% to 2%, and decrease denied transfers by up to 5%.
9:30 - 9:55 am 

Team 8 - Baxter Healthcare
Advisor:  Manish Bansal

View Poster

Baxter is an international healthcare company that supplies its products to hospitals, clinics, and the homes of patients. Baxter relies on using manual processes to manage and maintain proper inventory levels throughout warehouses and distribution centers to meet customer demand. Echelon stocking is a process to optimize inventory by looking at customer demand levels to determine when a product should be stocked at a determined warehouse. Currently, Baxter’s planning team manually gathers and analyzes past sales and inventory level data for echelon stocking, which takes around 20 hours per planner per month. The team developed an automated system for echelon stocking planning that improved Baxter’s existing manual process. This automated system involves documenting the process flows to identify key inputs and parameters needed, and implementing a new input screen for the new process. The automated echelon application process reduced the planning time from 20 hours per planner per month to one hour per planner per month, allowed employees to focus on higher priority analytics, which increased on-time-in-full key performance indicator (OTIF KPI), and saved $X in transportation costs and other aspects in the company.
10:00 - 10:25 am  Team 47 - VT Reimagining diVersiTy
Advisor:  Rafael Patrick


View Poster

At a societal level, Digital Divide and the lack of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion has created a critical and time sensitive need for carefully thought-out non-traditional approaches to recruitment in an effort to attract diverse student populations with socially conscious minds into STEM fields. As such, the Reimagining diVersiTy team was tasked with addressing issues of diversity recruitment into the Grado Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering. To accomplish this, the team sought to illustrate the department’s commitment to inclusion and diversity by developing and showcasing the creation of novel immersive environments to prospective Virginia Tech students.
The team chose to tackle these issues by designing an immersive virtual recruitment platform for the ISE Department that is easily accessible to a diverse population of students. The virtual space created will benefit the Industrial and Systems Engineering Department by allowing students to learn more about the opportunities and resources available while connecting with potential classmates. The platform will also encourage potential students thinking about attending Virginia Tech by showcasing the community. The virtual platform will increase recruitment by helping potential students get familiarized with the department without the need to visit campus, as well as increase diversity and inclusivity in the department by reaching a diverse body of users (potential students).
10:30 - 10:55 am  Team 36 - Naval Surface Warfare Center
Advisor:  Alejandro Salado


View Poster

Dr. Salado’s Automated MBSE (Model Based Systems Engineering) research team is working on developing an intelligent assistant, named “Houston”, to help SE’s (systems engineers) at the NSWC (Naval Surface Warfare Center) in Dahlgren, Virginia build robust models that fulfill all requirements for systems developed by the US Navy. For “Houston'' to be effective, it needs to collect accurate senior level systems engineering expertise. Our senior design team developed a process for both eliciting knowledge from SE’s and parsing that knowledge into “Houston.”  For the knowledge collection process, the team developed, tested, and iterated upon two surveys using Microsoft Forms and Excel. The information collected was categorized in an ontological format for Houston’s repository. This senior design team’s work provides a foundation for the intelligent assistant to begin knowledge collection, and, when “Houston” is deployed, has significant impacts for NSWC SE’s model building accuracy and efficiency
10:55 - 11:10 am BREAK  
11:10 - 11:35 am Team 20 - Kennametal
Advisor:  Michael Taaffe


View Poster

Kennametal is an American industrial tool manufacturing company headquartered in Latrobe, Pennsylvania. Our project focused on their Asheboro, North Carolina facility that produces carbide drills, end mills, and taps. Our mission was to create a simulation model of the facility’s production operations. The simulation includes logic to route orders, machine processing, operator schedules, and setup events. We were successful in incorporating all the required features in a Simio model which produces accurate outputs. We validated the model using historical data on machine uptime, daily throughput, and on-time performance. The model will allow Kennametal to test various production plans and operator shift schedules more quickly and accurately than before. Kennametal is left with an effective tool that can be modified and improved for any further analysis.
11:40 am - 12:05 pm Team 38 - Republic Finance
Advisor:  Robert Hildebrand & Weijun Xie


View Poster

Republic Finance, a personal consumer loan company, tasked our team with the opportunity to optimize their client solicitation schedule. The team’s solution approach utilized python to perform analytics on historical data represented by an optimization model that generated an improved calling schedule. To ensure accurate results, the team tested the schedule in a simulation created within Python. The optimal solution allowed Republic Finance to prioritize clients based on created segments sorted by the clients’ probability of contact, probability of renewal, and expected profitability. This provided Republic Finance with an increased opportunity of customer contact, resulting in an overall increase in renewals (target $5M in 3 years) and an optimal allocation of employees. In addition, the team provided Republic Finance with a proof of concept for optimizing their solicitations. 
12:10 - 12:35 pm Team 35 - Northrop Grumman
Advisor:  Michael Taaffe


View Poster

Northrop Grumman’s Electronics Lab is located in Redondo Beach, California and is responsible for manufacturing test racks that analyze and verify the electronic payloads of other Northrop Grumman projects, such as the James Webb Space Telescope. The lab has identified the opportunity to improve their organizational practice of planning given their high-mix and low-volume of products with various deadlines. Our client requested that the team create a scheduling tool that optimally assigns workers to available jobs dependent on skill sets, job priority, and project deadlines. The team created a tool using Microsoft Excel and Gurobi Optimization that takes user inputted data, and returns both a completed schedule and a manpower forecast for a three month period. The tool implementation is expected to reduce idle time in the lab as well as save overtime costs. 
 TIME TEAM ABSTRACT
9:00 - 9:25 am 
 Team 14 - Marvin Windows
Advisor: Tom Winters


View Poster

Marvin Windows manufactures doors and windows across the United States. Our team focused on the warehouse in Roanoke, Virginia. Marvin has experienced a 45% growth in demand in the past year and expects another 15% this year. With Marvin’s current inventory management system, the warehouse is incapable of storing all products. The team developed a new inventory management system based on an economic order quantity model with random demands of Marvin’s inventory data over the past nine months, to optimize their inventory levels with minimal risks. To facilitate our system’s implementation, the team modified Marvin’s current inventory management software to utilize the order point and quantity per part calculated in our analysis. Our solution’s implementation is expected to reduce Marvin Windows’ inventory levels by 50% in 3 years, reducing the total parts by 1.2 million, equivalent to $500,000 in holding cost. 
9:30 - 9:55 am  Team 40 - Montgomery Floyd Regional Library
Advisor:  Niyousha Hosseinichimeh


View Poster

Montgomery Floyd Regional Libraries bought a bookmobile with CARES Act funding to increase library community impact in senior living facilities, underrepresented communities, geographically isolated regions, and youth centers. Our team gathered library card zip code data, income per capita data, location data, and community size data for each potential stop posed to set up a decision matrix. Using this approach, our team ranked the potential stops and determined a cyclical route that maximizes community impact among the two counties. The route was determined based on a variety of factors outlined by our client such as potential staffing availability and attempts to minimize travel time. Successful implementation of our team’s recommended solution will increase library usage and the number of active library card users. 
10:00 - 10:25 am  Team 42 - UPS
Advisor:  Eileen Van Aken


View Poster

UPS’s Global Brokerage Engineering division is responsible for customs brokerage transactions around the world and is deemed a vital part of UPS’s international shipping business due to increases in international trade. The team was tasked with assisting UPS in evaluating and improving the customs clearance process for small package shipments by focusing on the service metric known as On-Time Release (OTR). The team evaluated OTR by defining the current state process, analyzing UPS data to determine trends and potential causes for delays in meeting OTR targets, and identifying areas for improvement. Data was examined by customer, country, hold code identified for delayed shipments, and trade lanes. The team also conducted a global survey of UPS employees to identify recent improvements, potential causes for delays, and potential future process changes. Lastly, the team benchmarked UPS’s current clearance measurement system against industry standards and practices to define a future state process, focusing on additional metrics that UPS could implement to provide a more holistic and proactive view of process performance.
10:30 - 10:55 am  Team 43 - Uttermost
Advisor:  Kimberly Ellis


View Poster

Uttermost is a major distributor of home décor merchandise. Uttermost operates a large (600,000 sq.ft) distribution facility with approximately 4000 stock keeping units (SKUs) and 120 employees. The current stocking configuration of the SKUs at the facility is not optimal, and customer orders are picked inefficiently, leading to wasted travel time for order pickers. This project provides more efficient approaches for selecting SKU locations, releasing orders for picking, and developing pick paths within the distribution center. The team implemented a zoning strategy for SKUs developed an algorithm to decrease travel distances for order pickers, and collaborated with the client’s software consultant to incorporate the strategies in their automated warehouse management system. The implementation of the strategy is expected to decrease the distance order pickers travel by 17%, increase orders picked per day by 37%, and enhance customer service levels.
10:55- 11:10 pm BREAK  
11:10 - 11:35 am Team 39 - Rize
Advisor:  Blake Johnson


View Poster

Rize is a Boston-based, next-generation additive manufacturing company working to redefine the 3D printing space with their use of eco-friendly materials and processes in the field. The team has an opportunity to showcase Rize printers in a university setting, which includes creating a model for distributed manufacturing. The model is flexible and adaptable, leveraging the capabilities of safe, full color functional 3D printing with smart workflows. This is done to identify replicable uses and create a community digital fabrication facility with spin off entrepreneurial capabilities. The team established a small-scale, online-based manufacturing venture within the Learning Factory, enabling Virginia Tech students and faculty to gain access to the newest technology, and print full-color items. This serves to both promote the usability of the Learning Factory, while serving as a case study for Rize to use in future business dealings and to broaden Rize technology usage.
11:40 am - 12:05 pm Team 41 - Roanoke City Public Schools
Advisor:   Sait Tunc


View Poster

Roanoke City Public Schools is one of the largest school systems in southwestern Virginia with 27 schools and approximately 14,000 students. With the increasing importance of renewable energy, Roanoke City Public Schools intends to set the standard for the Southwest Virginia area towards greater awareness of environmental impact by implementing solar panels into the schools with the highest annual energy expenditure rates that are present in the county. We provided a feasibility analysis for Patrick Henry High School, in which the physical implementation of solar panels was investigated through financial analysis, life cycle analysis, and system maintenance with respect to a 25 year time period. The research and analysis led to an optimal solution that included savings of $3,179,021 over the lifespan of the solar panel array. Although this study was focused on a single school, it can be extended to the other schools within RCPS’s district. 
12:10 - 12:35 pm

Team 46 - VT Learning Factory

Advisor:   Sean McGinnis


View Poster

The ISE Learning Factory is a realistically equipped production facility in Durham Hall that offers an educational platform for undergraduate hands-on learning and is a testbed for new Industry 4.0 technologies and systems. This project assessed the feasibility of using renewable energy as the primary power source for the Learning Factory in pursuit of a net zero carbon footprint. The team compared various renewable energy sources, and ultimately designed, developed, and oversaw installation of a suitably sized solar array and all of the necessary components (battery, inverter, racks, etc.). Per year, the implementation is expected to reduce overall carbon emissions by 100%, saving $132.14 in related social costs for 2.62 tons CO2e, increase Learning Factory publicity/ attention to approximately 100 visits, and save $311.28 in related energy costs, producing 107% of the Learning Factory’s energy requirements at half capacity. Over the next three years, the total impact is expected to be $1,330.26, excluding all unmeasurable impacts (increased attention from investors and new students, global warming and human health factors).

 

 TIME TEAM ABSTRACT
9:00 - 9:25 am 
 Team 7 - Baxter Healthcare
Advisor:   Laura Savage


View Poster 

Baxter International is a global healthcare company and leading producer of medical products. The company is driving digital transformation and Robotic Process Automation (RPA) implementation to deliver products and manage systems better than ever before. The team has identified and evaluated several opportunity areas to automate using RPA within Baxter’s supply chain. The solution involves a two-phase approach to create a proof of concept bot which automates opportunities with the highest ROI, including planning parameter alignment and pallet factor optimization. This proof of concept will translate to RPA and drive operational efficiencies, repurpose labor hours, reduce associated costs, and contribute to furthering Baxter’scommitment to digital transformation. 
9:30 - 9:55 am  Team 9 - Beans & Rice
Advisor:  Michael Taaffe


View Poster

Beans and Rice Inc. is a non-profit organization located in Radford and Pulaski, Virginia that provides a variety of services to people in the New River Valley Area. The three main issues that Beans & Rice, Inc. was hoping our team could address were: (1) limited visibility into how participants progress through their workforce development program - a lack of data, (2) a duplication of efforts between other organizations - potentially wasting very limited funding, and (3) clients are unable to successfully land and keep a job. Our team created a system that effectively coordinates Beans & Rice, Inc. efforts with other local organizations to allow participants to flow seamlessly between organizations and services depending on their needs. We built a standalone web application using a javascript-based stack called MERN that includes MongoDB, Express, React, and NodeJS. There were 4 different user types incorporated: participants, partners, employers, and administrators. Participants were job-seekers looking for training and employment, partners were organizations that offered training or programs, employers were organizations with available job positions, and administrators were Beans and Rice staff who administered the application. This system has and will continue to help better prepare potential employees in the New River Valley to find and keep jobs, increased the appeal for prospective companies to relocate to Pulaski county, and reduced the labor and overhead costs for Beans & Rice by approximately $57,000 over a three year period.
10:00 - 10:25 am  Team 10 - Beans & Rice
Advisor:  John Shewchuk


View Poster

Beans and Rice Inc. is a not-for-profit organization that improves the economic well-being of low-to-moderate income families through a variety of welfare programs. Their food security program involves a food distribution process that proved to be cumbersome and inefficient for both employees and customers. The team reviewed the previous sign-up procedure and created a streamlined system that simplifies the tasks and reduces the number of overall steps. By reducing the number of applications and transitioning to more user-friendly platforms, the new food distribution sign-up process promotes a seamless operation that was employable in both the weekly food pick-up events and the new Mobile Food Market program. With the implementation of this new process, employee process time reduced by 88%, customer sign-up time decreased by an estimated 83%, customer sign-ups increased by 59%, and process costs reduced by $1,602 per year (a significant amount for a not-for-profit organization).
10:30 - 10:55 am  Team 12 - Carilion Clinic
Advisor:   Nathan Lau


View Poster

Carilion Clinic is a non-profit healthcare organization that currently has over 200 practice sites. Since the coronavirus pandemic, the emergency department (E.D.) in the Roanoke Carilion Clinic Hospital has experienced an influx of patients while having to decrease the capacity in their waiting room. To alleviate dissatisfaction among patients and their caregivers, our team created a survey to collect qualitative data on patient experience. In addition, we gathered data from hospital staff regarding patient arrival, process of care, and discharge time to aid in the formation of a simulation that models trends of patient flow through the E.D. We expected the qualitative analysis to better inform Carilion staff of the preferences of patients and their caregivers while waiting in the E.D., allowing the hospital to prioritize suitable adjustments to be implemented in the waiting room to improve patient satisfaction. The simulation provided great insight on how long patients, and in turn their caregivers, are waiting to move through the process of care within the E.D. and in turn allowed us to provide better feedback to our clients on how they can better their patient and caregiver experience during their time in the E.D.
10:55 - 11:10 am BREAK  
11:10 - 11:35 am Team 18 - Emerson
Advisor:  Kenneth Harmon


View Poster

Emerson Electric’s Charlottesville manufacturing plant faced the problem of an outdated and ineffective label printing system. The printers in use are discontinued, and the current printing applications cannot run on newer printer models. Only one employee understands the label system in depth, making it difficult to upkeep. Programs run in Visual Basic 6 and pull data from Microsoft Access; both of which have been outdated for over 10 years. Old printers and old code forced Emerson to continue to run the antiquated programs, and the program will be completely obsolete in a matter of months. Our team’s mission is to design and plan for the implementation of a new label printing system by updating the code language and eliminating the need for Access. As the project evolved throughout the year, we discovered the label program’s code complexity would require a more agile approach while working with Emerson, rather than a traditional waterfall design methodology. Our final deliverables are a full system specification of the current printing system which is vital to the implementation of a new labeling system and recommendations to aid their major update. This documentation will contain many flowcharts to provide a full visualization of the current program execution. The visualization of pseudocode will allow Emerson to continue forward with the operational update of their system, either in-house or by a third party.
11:40 am - 12:05 pm Team 22 - Kyocera
Advisor:  Myounghoon "Philart" Jeon


View Poster

Kyocera-SGS is a branch of Kyocera that manufactures industry leading solid carbide cutting tools. There is a lot of information needed to create an accurate quote for a customer in a timely manner, which is difficult for the sales representatives to capture in a single customer interaction. This project specifically addresses the inefficient process when sales representatives submit customer and tool information to the quotation team for Request for Proposals (RFQs). Working closely with the client through an Agile Software Development Life Cycle, the final product(s) are an Android app and a website form. These platforms are utilized by sales representatives to collect all the required information for the quotation team to accurately create a tool quote. Based on the estimation, this multi-platform RFQ system is projected to retain $150,000 worth of sales, and a total of $750,000 increases in company’s revenue over the next three years.
12:10 - 12:35 pm

Team 48 - VT Transportation Institute
Advisor:  Xi Chen


View Poster

Virginia Tech Transportation Institute (VTTI), one of Virginia Tech’s premier research institutions, utilizes an online database to provide a space for researchers to view and purchase sections of their naturalistic driving study. This study includes 800+ data variables and caused unnecessary rework between VTTI analysts and customers due to its lack of a streamlined data request process. The team developed a website and robust web form that minimized the amount of rework an analyst experiences and simplified the request process. This solution allows customers to select, review, and submit their requested data variables directly to a VTTI analyst instead of communicating vague requirements via email. Implementation of this prototype improved employee satisfaction and standardization by 33% and 100% respectively, as well as decreased the estimated amount of rework by 63%; thus, leading to expected savings in labor costs of $40,000 annually, for a total impact of $120,000 over three years.
 TIME TEAM ABSTRACT
9:00 - 9:25 am 
 Team 2 - Abbott Nutrition
Advisor:  Joseph Gabbard


View Poster
 
The Nutrition Division of Abbott laboratories manufactures pediatric, adult, medical, and performance nutrition products. Abbott identified an opportunity to harness mixed reality technology to improve their Lockout/Tagout safety training program. The team developed a comprehensive safety training package with Microsoft Dynamics 365 Guides and the HoloLens that better simulates the Lockout/Tagout procedures. Mixed reality environments were populated with 3-dimensional models of equipment, instructions, and visual aids. This Mixed Reality approach improved the usability and immersiveness of the training program and received positive feedback from employee surveys. The implementation of the training package is expected to result in a significant decrease in safety-related incidents including saving on injury costs and lost time.
9:30 - 9:55 am 

Team 3 - Abbott Nutrition
Advisor:  Deborah Dickerson


View Poster

This project focused on improving the onboarding system Abbott Nutrition uses for new hires to increase comprehension of their Good Manufacturing Practices (GMPs) by making the system more interactive. The solution provides a story-based training experience created in a Google Forms that demonstrates to new hires GMPs as they could encounter them in a day at the facility. The implementation decreased time needed for employee comprehension of GMPs, increased new hire engagement, and increased employees’ retention of GMPs. Along with investing in workplace practices, the project impacts Abbott by increasing sales, promoting cost savings, and decreasing employee turnover.
10:00 - 10:25 am  Team 15 - CPWR
Advisor:  Natalie Cherbaka


View Poster

CPWR is a nonprofit center for construction research that aims to reduce occupational injuries and fatalities through safety training. The current, outdated silica training platform fails to influence decision-makers of large construction firms to purchase safer equipment, specifically dust shroud attachments for angle grinders. To increase the effectiveness of silica training, the team developed an interactive website that incorporates multiple user-experience design techniques: fear-based messaging, gamification, health safety information, cost benefit analysis, and visual comparisons. The new website is expected to increase engagement in safety training, ultimately increasing dust shroud use. The increase in dust shroud use will decrease illnesses caused by respirable silica dust, thereby supporting the mission of CPWR.
10:30 - 10:55 am  Team 45 - VT College of Engineering
Advisor:  Scott Sink


View Poster

The purpose of this project was to improve the new employee onboarding process for the Virginia Tech College of Engineering. In doing so, the goal was to analyze the existing process, identify any and all critical pain points, and provide recommendations for improvement. Process problem areas in several engineering departments were identified based on multiple discussions and workshops with departmental onboarding coordinators, and any improvements thereof were based upon the maximization of stakeholder satisfaction, simplicity of completion, and the Process Maturity Level (or to how great of a degree a process is formalized). Solution improvements were created based on discussions and benchmarking research and assessed by several onboarding coordinators and other stakeholders in the College. Upon assessment of our proposed adjustments and refinements, the satisfaction, simplicity, and Process Maturity Level of each proposed solution were reassessed and compared to the initial scores, resulting in a recommendation for the implementation of all proposed improvements starting with the Fall 2021 hiring cycle.
10:55 - 11:10 am BREAK  
11:10 - 11:35 am Team 4 - Altria
Advisor:  Divya Srinivasan


View Poster

Altria produces different types of tobacco flavors by implementing an ingredient compounding mixture process. The current process requires associates to lift a 55 pound box of ingredients from a pallet to a table, open the box and crush the ingredients inside, then dump the crushed ingredients into a mixing bin. Over their 8-hour shift they can be subjected to around 100 boxes. The team collaborated to form a fishbone diagram to recognize each task that is affected by this process, analyzed the stress/strain of the current process using stress indexes, and mapped solutions on an impact/effort matrix. After solutions were narrowed, the exoskeleton solution was culled to reduce risk of work-musculoskeletal disease, increase productivity, and reduce fatigue all while maintaining or improving the workplace environment. 
11:40 am - 12:05 pm Team 49 - Systems Engineering Research Center (SERC)
Advisor:  Charlie Klauer

 
View Poster

Our client is the US Navy, and we are working on measuring pilot cognitive and physical performance in a dry combat submersible for a Navy Seal vehicle delivery team. As this project is centered around a curated human performance study, our solution and recommendations were dictated by the anticipated results. The team prepared and submitted an IRB which received approval mid-February. After receiving IRB approval, the team conducted the human performance study which consisted of a list of required tasks which mimic those of the DCS environment as well as a list of cognitive assessments to be administered throughout the duration of the study. Following the study, the team utilized the data collected to produce guidelines for an optimum shift schedule and a viable list of fatigue monitoring tests which can be utilized in real-time. These recommendations can be used to increase mission efficiency and help operators of the DCS have prime cognitive function throughout the mission.
12:10 - 12:35 pm Team 25 - Lokar Inc.
Advisor:  John Casali


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Lokar Performance Products’ Packaging department suffers from a bottleneck in their production process as well as a high rate of customer dissatisfaction with packaging. The solution to these problems came from first determining a baseline packaging “score”. We created a rating scale based on Lokar’s packaging needs and then used that scale to survey previous customers. We used the average score from the customers to compare against ratings of potential new packaging solutions. Using a Meister’s Plan to then break ties, we arrived at the following solutions: Custom multi-sized tubes for dipsticks and tab locking boxes for throttle cables and small bracketry, with die-cut foam inserts for all products. Our solution, curated with customer experience and Lokar’s specifications, led to an elimination of Lokar’s bottleneck, increase in customer satisfaction, and 15% increase in sales.
 TIME TEAM ABSTRACT
9:00 - 9:25 am 
 Team 21 - Kennametal
Advisor:  Xiaowei Yue


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Kennametal is an American supplier of tooling and industrial materials that require very precise machining to meet tight tolerances. They previously used a manual inspection process to verify the specifications of a carbide component, which led to waiting, transportation, inventory, and motion waste. Using a repurposed six-axis Fanuc robotic arm and a vision system, our team was able to accurately and repeatedly move these carbide components from a handling tray to the measurement fixture and back fully autonomously. This project enabled Kennametal to implement an automated vision inspection process to replace the manual inspection process and save around $400,000 in labor costs over a span of 3 years.
9:30 - 9:55 am  Team 26 - Maag Gala
Advisor:  Laura Savage


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Maag Gala Industries in Eagle Rock, Virginia creates equipment to pump, filter, pelitize, pulverize, and control quality for viscous materials to process plastic. They have the opportunity to increase their potential sales and decrease manual labor risk, cycle time, and cost for the centrifugal dryers with the stellite application process. The team utilized a decision matrix and cost analysis to compare robotic arm vendors to replace the current semi-manual process. When cost, functionality, opportunities to grow, and service are compared for nine vendors against the current process, the team strongly recommends the solution provided by Yaskawa America Motoman Robotics Division. Along with the 3.5 year ROI for the implementation of the fully autonomous solution, it yields $118,000 annual savings in labor costs. 
10:00 - 10:25 am  Team 19 - FlexMetrics
Advisor:  Ran Jin


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FlexMetrics creates solutions for production environments by providing digital engineering capabilities. One solution type they provide are data-driven dashboards for clients to monitor key manufacturing metrics such as speed, uptime, and yield. Access to these metrics enables manufacturers to improve production lines in a quantitative manner. Currently, a FlexMetrics client sets goals for jobs and equipment manually, costing excess labor hours and inefficient equipment usage. Our team developed a statistical approach to automate this process based on historical data. In our solution, historical production data is analyzed to predict and recommend job and equipment goals that maximize throughput. The presentation of this statistical method is through a user interface that allows FlexMetric clients to easily interact and rerun the statistical analysis under multiple scenarios to generate future goals and throughputs. The statistical analysis was verified on multiple client datasets and achieved a RMSE of less than 10% and R2 above 85% across all equipment. Implementation of the user interface and statistical method is expected to benefit both FlexMetrics and clients. It will improve the customer service FlexMetrics provides clients and enable future contract opportunities. Clients operating the software will experience improved equipment and labor efficiencies. The expected impact of our model with FlexMetrics is $135,000 over the next three years, with $115,000 being from new business and $20,000 being from cost savings.
10:30 - 10:55 am  Team 31 - Medeco
Advisor:  Maury Nussbaum


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Assa Abloy – a group of companies that specializes in doors, locks, and access solutions – faced financial strain at their Rockwood, Pennsylvania facility due to increased demand for labor during both the inspection and rework of their stainless steel kickplate parts. Medeco, a member of the Assa Abloy group, tasked the team with automating these processes. The team replicated the inspection capabilities of a commercial vision system with a Raspberry Pi camera unit and OpenCV package. After the Raspberry Pi unit collects defect locations, it passes the coordinates to a 6-axis robotic arm for rework. These automated processes reduced the cycle time and required labor hours, and are expected to create significant savings in labor costs over the next year. This solution will also save $10,000+ when compared with the cost of a normal vision system.
10:55 - 11:10 am BREAK  
11:10 - 11:35 am Team 37 - Collins Aerospace
Advisor:  Andrea L'Afflitto


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The Collins Aerospace division assigned to this project is the Aerostructures division based in Chula Vista, California. This division focuses on nacelle systems, flight control surfaces, naval composites, and other material and structural components. Collins Aerospace currently performs the assembly of the A320 Inlet by hand which takes significant time to finish and is not cost effective. The team examined the current process and identified the operations that would benefit most from automation. To provide the best result, the team developed a plan to automate the process through the implementation of a robotic arm and modular tooling head outfitted with a drill and rivet gun attachment. With the implementation of this automated solution our team predicted a cycle time reduction of 15% and a cost reduction of $400,000 over the next five years.
11:40 am - 12:05 pm

Team 28 - Medallia
Advisor:  Navid Ghaffarzadegan
 

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Medallia is an experience management software company based out of San Francisco utilizing artificial intelligence, machine learning and other forms of predictive technology to form insights for their clients. Medallia’s software products can track and analyze the experience of the customers, users, and employees. In 2020, U.S companies expensed an estimated $600B+ for quitting employees with 78% of the reasons being preventable. Seeing this as an opportunity, the team developed a predictive attrition model using employee surveys. The team created a generalized pipeline that can one; predict attrition signals with 75% accuracy and two; provide insightful survey feedback and key drivers of attrition in stakeholder’s data. This model is expected to prevent costs after implementation, saving an estimated $15,000 per employee deterred from leaving. 
12:10 pm - 12:35 pm

Team 29 - Medallia
Advisor:  Konstantinos Triantis


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Medallia is an experience management company, leading the market in capturing, managing, and understanding the experience of customers and employees. Medallia is unable to provide clients operating the Feedback Management product with a quantitative analysis of the product's benefits. The process for illustrating these benefits is inefficient, manual, and therefore ineffective. The team developed an automated tool using a combination of Python and Excel to improve this process. Initial results demonstrate that the tool reduces the time it takes for Medallia to complete the quantitative analysis by 50% and increases the efficiency of the process by 60%. The implementation of the new tool is expected to save Medallia $225,000 in labor and increase sales by $520,000 over the next three years.
 TIME TEAM ABSTRACT
9:00 - 9:25 am 
Team 5 - Association for Manufacturing Technology
Advisor:  Zhenyu "James" Kong


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The Association of Manufacturing Technology (AMT) represents 647 US manufacturing technology creators and provides resources to advance the field of digital manufacturing. Expanding upon previous design team work, the team produced an additional industry handbook on the process of implementing digital manufacturing via open-source standards. The industry information model standard, MTConnect, was implemented in Virginia Tech’s Learning Factory to collect, filter and consolidate data from multiple machines into a database and subsequent dashboard for visualization and analysis. This work will allow the manufacturing industry to employ MTConnect in a way that results in less data clutter, automated analysis and increased industry 4.0 capabilities. By using the industry handbook the team generated, manufacturing companies will realize between $1,250 and $3,250 in implementation time savings.
9:30 - 9:55 am  Team 6 - Applied Felts
Advisor: Andy Hansborough


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Applied Felts is a cured-in-place pipe manufacturer that operates out of Martinsville, Virginia. Applied Felts’ products are custom in that they are made to order for the customer. There is a large variety of sizes ordered and these ordered sizes are not predictable, thus creating an excess of waste. The team is looking to optimize a process so the liners are cut with maximum efficiency. This model is based on the cutting stock problem to output the best cut for raw materials to minimize wastage. The implementation of this model is expected to reduce waste by 48% and reduce monthly waste costs from US$225,000 per month to approximately US$117,000. It saves the company nearly $1,296,000 each year. 
10:00 - 10:25 am  Team 11 - Cadence
Advisor:  Kimberly Ellis


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Cadence is a contract manufacturer of specialty blades, with headquarters and a manufacturing site in Staunton, VA. Cadence anticipates growth for existing products and the introduction of new products, providing a need to evaluate the facility layout and process flows. The team analyzed both the current state data and the predicted impact of new demand by developing value stream maps, spaghetti diagrams, and a dependency diagram to determine a baseline for improvement. This initial analysis, along with cost and infrastructure requirements, resulted in three new layout alternatives which provide a range of feasible opportunities for Cadence. The proposed layouts, paired with a business case analysis, balance the resource costs with reductions in lead time, inventory level, and material movements. After implementing the selected layout alternative, Cadence will expect reduced direct labor hours, lower inventory days on hand, and less time from raw materials to finished goods, while meeting current demand. In addition, the new layout will increase production capacity to enable future product growth.
10:30 - 10:55 am  Team 13 - Carter Machinery
Advisor:  Hanumanthrao "Rao" Kannan


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Carter Machinery is one of few dealers for Caterpillar Inc. offering reconditioning services for six cylinder engines, due to the engine size’s tight profit margins. Our approach involved speaking with technicians, analyzing historical data, and observing the process to identify the problem areas to focus on. The team prepared solutions to reduce variation in total labor hours, and created standard procedures on how to implement them, which involved a standard work instruction and impact models. The team provided Carter with improved facility standards, and a process control mechanism to achieve uniformity and accountability, all of which reduced their lead times by 54%, reduced assembly area variation per engine by 20%, and reduced total engine time by 4%.
10:55 - 11:10 am BREAK  
11:10 - 11:35 pm Team 24 - Lokar Inc.
Advisor:  Subhash Sarin


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Lokar Performance Products is a company that manufactures custom aftermarket vehicle parts. Their line of automatic shifters has expanded, and they continue to see rises in product demand. The goal of this project was to combine the shifter product line into one production cell while making drastic cuts to cycle times. The team accomplished the goal by redesigning the cell layout and workstations. Using Lean, Ergonomics, and other principles, the team designed and modified four workstations within the cell, designed fixtures for these stations, wrote new work instructions, and rewrote stocking procedures for the cell. This new production cell is expected to prevent lost sales and canceled orders totaling over $100,000.
11:40 am - 12:05 pm Team 34 - Kollmorgen
Advisor:  Subhash Sarin


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Kollmorgen, a corporation that manufactures electronic motion control products and systems has been experiencing an increase in overdue mechanical gauges for calibration. The team determined the root causes of this problem to be the lack of accountability, capacity, and communication, as well as the scheduling of gauges for calibration at their facilities. To address these issues, the team has implemented a complete barcode system, a centralized schedule, a restructured gauge list, and has trained new calibrators to aid in the calibration process. The implementation of these solutions is expected to streamline the calibration process by decreasing the amount of overdue gauges to less than 1% and reducing the cycle time by increasing throughput. This will result in savings of $163,500 over the next three years.
12:10 pm - 12:35 pm Team 27 - Maag Gala
Advisor:  Michael Madigan


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MAAG Gala assembles large centrifugal dryers for use in the plastics industry. Their facility in Eagle Rock is encountering safety and efficiency problems relating to rotating these dryers during the manufacturing process. Specifically, the size and weight of these dryers is causing concerns in the welding and peening areas of the manufacturing facility. The team researched solutions to similar problems that are already implemented in other industries and used this knowledge to design two fixtures in AutoCAD Inventor to remedy these concerns. The team then created two documents describing the time savings and safety benefits that MAAG will realize by implementing these fixtures. Implementation of these solutions will improve safety by reducing the likelihood of catastrophic events that lead to injuries, increase efficiency by shortening the cycle time of assembling dryers, and standardize employee practices associated with the rotation process. By implementing these improvements to the centrifugal dryer manufacturing process, MAAG can anticipate saving $11,000 over the next three years.