Students use modern equipment in the lab that includes computer-controlled LabVIEW data acquisition systems for heating power, temperature, fluid flow, and pressure measurement. Many of these instruments are updated periodically, and new ones are added regularly. During each lab students are placed in groups of three to perform experiment under the supervision of laboratory personnel for each session of two hours and fifty minutes. The data are later analyzed and compared with theory in the form of a comprehensive report, to be handed in, a week later. For every experiment, students are required to determine the uncertainties that are associated with their measurements. Typical experiments conducted in the lab are:
1. Temperature measurements systems and uncertainty analysis
2. 1-D Linear and Radial Conduction
3. Forced Convection over Extended Surfaces
4. Natural Convection
1. Calibration of pressure transducers and different types of flow meters.
2. Hydro static and pressure Variation in a rotational vessel using high speed camera.
3. Fundamentals of energy equation, Bernoulli’s principle.
4. Impact of a Jet.
5. Pelton wheel.
6. Major and Minor losses in pipes: (in an industrial scale setup).
7. External flows; Flow around a cylinder and Drag.
The Materials and Manufacturing laboratories are spread through 7 rooms in the lower level of the Academic wing of Texas A&M University at Qatar. The rooms are assigned as follows: 052 – Optical Microscopy (360 sq.ft), 051 – Metallographic Specimen Preparation (540 sq.ft), 050 – Welding Operations (900 sq.ft), 048 – Mechanical Materials Testing (660 sq.ft), 047 – SEM, XRD, XRF (480 sq.ft), 046 – Heat Treatment (450 sq.ft), 045 – Foundry, Rapid Prototyping, and MTS (630 sq.ft). A total of approximately 4,020 sq.ft is dedicated to the Material Science courses.
The laboratory session for MEEN 360 Materials and Manufacturing Selection in Design meets once a week during which experiments are conducted to reinforce lecture concepts. Typical experiments during the semester might include topics in heat treatment of steel, cold work and annealing, machining operations, welding processes, injection molding, and tensile testing, material hardness testing, fatigue testing, aging of materials and others. Workstations have been designed to support up to 20 students working in teams of two or three.
MEEN 360 laboratory facilities and equipment also support other courses in Mechanical Engineering. In particular, students in MEEN 404, a senior laboratory design course, frequently use the facilities. Students in the senior design classes (MEEN 401 and 402) will use the facilities as they develop their projects for clients and need access to machining and testing equipment. In particular, the rapid prototyping, injection-molding machine, machine tools, and testing apparatuses are put to considerable use.
Central Machine Shop
Top turn 2580 Engine Lathe
Emco Maxxturn 65
Famup MCX 1200
Basic 180 Super Engine Lathe
(2) Sinus 330/1500 C Engine Lathe
The MEEN 404 "Engineering Laboratory" course differs from the other required Mechanical Engineering laboratory courses in that the emphasis is on the process of designing, conducting, and reporting on experimental investigations rather than the demonstration, clarification, and application of engineering or scientific principles. Consequently, there are no laboratory facilities specific to this course. Equipment, instruments, and sensors commonly used for this course are stored in Room 049 and 050 in the Academic Wing of Texas A&M University at Qatar, having a total floor area of approximately 900 sq.ft.
All laboratory facilities associated with the Mechanical Engineering undergraduate program are available to students enrolled in this course, including the Heat Transfer Laboratory, the Fluid Mechanics Laboratory, the Dynamic Systems and Controls Laboratory, and the Materials and Manufacturing Laboratory. Faculty and technicians responsible for the various laboratory facilities of the Department cooperate with students allowing MEEN 404 students to use the facilities and resources on an "as available" basis. In addition, students are allowed, in some cases, to use equipment in some of the research laboratories if they identify a project associated with ongoing research and the professor in charge agrees. Occasionally, Mechanical Engineering students who enrolled in MEEN 404 have used equipment and facilities in other departments, who cooperate with our program.
In addition, students often design and build test apparatuses to conduct their experiments. There is a budget to support reasonable expenditures depending on the experiment. Instrumentation for experiments such as thermocouples, pressure gages, flow meters, voltmeters, wattmeter, video and still cameras, and other instrumentation is available from the MEEN instrument shop. If there are repeated calls for specific types of instrumentation or equipment, requests are made to the College administration for purchase of these items. Other instrumentation and supplies are purchased for Individual experiments.
Plans for improvement of the MEEN 404 – Engineering Laboratory over the next five years:
- Continued monitoring of instrument/sensor needs and which equipment should be purchased to fill out the inventory available to students for their experiments.
- Purchase of laboratory apparatuses that are not presently available in laboratories of the Mechanical Engineering Department, such as a small gas turbine test rig, a fuel cell test rig, a hybrid power system, or a MEMS test apparatus. These could be used for a multitude of experiments that students could conceive, design, and conduct.
Dynamic Systems and Controls
The Dynamic Systems and Controls Laboratory (MEEN 364) is located in Room 230 of the Academic Teaching Wing of Texas A&M University at Qatar. This lab has a floor area of approximately 1,500 sq.ft. The duration of each laboratory is 2 hours and 50 minutes. The enrollment limit for each section is 18.
Each semester a total of 12 experiments are conducted: