2014 Senior Design Projects

The projects below are for BSEN 4310. Nine student design teams are currently working on these projects in Biosystems Engineering Department this spring semester.

Corley Building Sustainability

senior designWilliam Chaplow, Emily Vogelgesang, Kyle Williams

Team Poster

Project Statement:

The Corley Building on Auburn University’s campus is home to the Biosystems Engineering department. Since the department’s mission involves integration of sustainability into engineering design and building applications, it is paramount that the department be a leader in the campus and community wide sustainability movement.  However, due to Corley’s age, the building’s efficiency lags far behind current sustainable building practices.  This project will implement rainwater harvesting from the roof of the building in order to meet irrigation needs of the front lawn off the city water grid, implement solar harvesting on the roof of building in order to meet electrical needs of the irrigation pumps, and inform the community on the impact Biosystems Engineering is having in regards to on-campus sustainability via displays showcasing project and water/electrical savings.  The front lawn will require a collection of a maximum 5,000 gallons to be used every four days with storage capacity accounting for seasonal changes in rainfall; the implementation of drip irrigation will reduce horsepower requirement of the pumps insuring the solar panels will collect enough energy. Overall, using an off-the-grid irrigation system will serve as an example to the campus and community on where Biosystems Engineering stands in the sustainability movement.

Poultry House Attic Inspection Device

Gatlin Thornberry, Trey Tidmore, and Ben Bazemore

Team Postersenior design

 Problem Statement:

The Alabama Cooperative Extension Service has requested assistance with energy auditing procedures performed on poultry houses in the state of Alabama. Currently, a significant portion of each farm audit is spent in the attics of poultry houses with considerable difficulty due to cramped space and limited footing. Access into the 500 ft. long attics is through a 3 by 3 foot ceiling entrance, with inspection by foot across trusses on 5 ft. centers. The objective is to design a conveyance apparatus to carry a 250-lb load along the attic to allow inspection of structural integrity and energy efficiency using video, photographs, and notes for documentation. The design must provide a lightweight, adjustable, and durable mechanical device that will assist the inspector’s maneuvering over the attic trusses allowing them to safely and proficiently perform energy audits. The device should be manually powered and allow the operator to sit down during the inspection of the poultry house attic.

Fertilizer Deep Placement (FDP)

senior designZac Lee, Jim Farmer, and Win Timberlake

Team Poster

Project Statement:

Rice farmers in Bangladesh and other developing countries utilize a fertilizer application method called fertilizer deep placement, which is the process of inserting compressed urea briquettes to a depth of 7-10 cm into the saturated paddy soil. One device for urea briquette placement developed by the International Fertilizer Development Center (IFDC) is the Guti urea single-row applicator. The goal of this project is to address the limitations of the current design of the Guti urea single-row applicator, namely size, consistency/accuracy of application, storage capacity, and ease of use/repair. IFDC has expressed interest in increasing the hopper capacity up to 12.5 kg. Also, more accurate metering and placement of the briquettes has been requested. Materials to repair the applicator must be lightweight and readily available to farmers in Bangladesh. In addition to these design constraints, the overall price per unit of the applicator must remain close to $30 USD.

Donald E. Davis Arboretum Pond Nutrient Removalsenior design

Matthew Brown, James Cherry, and Jarrod Litton

Team Poster

Project Statement:

The Donald E. Davis Arboretum, located on the southeastern side of Auburn University’s campus, is surrounded on three sides by the new Poultry Science Building, the Hill Dormitories, and the President’s Mansion. Each one of these sites contains a unique type of pollution that drains into the pond located centrally in the Arboretum. The pond is relatively small compared to the area that drains into and is suffering severe pollution issues. The team has tasked themselves with improving the quality of the pond by deploying Algal Turf Scrubbers. Algal Turf Scrubbers work by utilizing the ponds native algae and its natural nutrient removal qualities to remove excess nutrients from the water supply. The team is exploring a customized Turf Scrubber specifically designed to treat the nutrient pollution issues found in the Arboretum Pond. By installing these Turf Scrubbers and removing nutrients the group plans to reduce the hypereutrophic pond back to a level of a healthy eutrophic water body. This means reducing the amount of excess nutrients by 44%. In addition to achieving this goal the group would like the proposed Algae Turf Scrubber designs to include an educational aspect as well as being aesthetically pleasing to encourage visitor interest. Through this project the team hopes to increase awareness of how effective natural ecological process can be used to improve the environment as well as lay a foundation for future research to be performed.

Methane Aquaculture

methane aquacultureSteven Major, Annie Gallagher, and Bobbi Steenbergen

Team Poster

Problem Statement:

The North Auburn Fisheries Unit in Auburn, Alabama produces Tilapia and tomatoes in adjacent greenhouses under the management of Dr. Jesse Chappell. Dr. Chappell wishes to implement an integrated systems approach to utilize the Tilapia excrement on site. Our team seeks to utilize an anaerobic digestion system to power the two greenhouses, heat the two Tilapia tanks to the optimal temperature of 25°C during the winter months, and provide fertilizer for the tomatoes. This design will increase the facility’s production immensely while being economically and environmentally successful.

Manheim Atlanta Water Reclamation

senior design

Ashlee Acosta, Catherine Priester, and Sarah Richard

Team Poster

Project Statement:

Manheim Auctions is a subsidiary of Cox Enterprises, providing services for wholesale automotive auctions including marketing, transportation, and repair & reconditioning. Approximately 2/3 of all cars that enter a Manheim Auction have been through a rigorous detailing process prior to sale. Wastewater from the detailing process must be pretreated, collected, and hauled off-site for final treatment. Cox Enterprises wants to implement a water reclamation system in order to reuse treated wastewater and reduce municipal water consumption by 75%. The company has allocated a budget of $150, 000 for the installation of an automated water reclamation system at Manheim Atlanta, with the intention of evaluating the process for use at other Manheim facilities.

Aquaculture Waste Removal Team

senior designGiuliana Corsini, Lauren Dickerson, and Edward Smith

Team Poster

Problem Statement:

One of the goals of the Auburn University Fisheries Department is to industrialize fish farming in the United States. Under the direction of Dr. Jesse Chappell, the North Auburn Fisheries Unit is in the process of developing a new system for solid separation of waste produced from recirculating aquaculture systems. The objective of our project is to design a system that can separate the 39 million pounds of solids that are being discharged by the production of 50 million pounds of fish, annually. The proposed treatment system will separate solid waste in a state that can be used for the net economic gain of the industrial fish farm.

AG Heritage Park Stormwater Managementsenior design

Samuel Broder, John Lancaster, and Ryan McGehee

Team Poster

Project Statement:

The Ag Heritage Park is located within the watershed of the Parkerson Mill Creek, which is impaired for both pathogen contamination and sedimentation.  Stormwater runoff from most of its 93-acre watershed accumulates in the 2.5 acre Ag Heritage Park Pond.  The runoff is then routed through about 3 acres of potential wetland area, which is the focus of this design project.  The student design team will provide a plan for runoff retention and the remediation of diffuse pollution loads for Mr. Robert Hensarling, supervisor of the park.  Specific contaminants include pathogens, sediment, nitrogen, and phosphorous.  The remediation plan will evaluate the existing hydrology of the site and its watershed for storm event return periods as specified by the City of Auburn’s Storm Water Management Manual.  At a minimum the 2, 5, 10, and 25-year 24-hour storm events will be among the design storms to evaluate.  Also to be included in this plan are any necessary modifications to the existing detention pond, and a treatment wetland design to facilitate the objectives of the plan and supervisor.

Ft. Benning Low Impact Development and Environmental Education Showcase

senior designAnna Breland, Clinton Carroll, and Stephanie Smith

Team Poster

Project Statement:

Ft. Benning would like to implement a low impact design at the site of the future Environmental Education Center.  The center’s goal is to promote the use of environmentally-conscious practices and to educate and engage the public in the center’s purpose. The site is a 5.5 acre plot located on Ft. Benning Army Base near Columbus, GA, at the intersection of Ft. Benning and Custer Road.  The site is located adjacent to the Chattahoochee River and drains to the nearby Upatoi Creek, which is listed as an impaired waterway due to sedimentation.  The project area includes the parking lot and green space surrounding a 1,750 square foot building.  The goal of this project is to propose a site plan that will meet the center’s education goals and showcase best management practices (BMPs) that reduce the site’s stormwater runoff volume by 10%, while considering the nearby impaired Upatoi Creek, the conditions throughout the watershed, the nearby River Walk, and sensitive areas near the project site.  The proposed plan will incorporate several low-impact development practices including, but not limited to: rain gardens, water cisterns, bioretention cells, and pervious pavement to capture rainwater, increase infiltration, and reduce ponding.  The design will include signage to explain each practice to the public and visitors, and an outreach event for the community after the project has been completion.

 

Last Updated: May 08, 2017