Group 3 - Kawasaki Compressor 1
We are a group of five engineering students taking an MAE 277 Intro to M.E. course at University at Buffalo. During the course of the semester, our group will be analyzing, dissecting, documenting, and reassembling a Kawasaki Air Compressor. We hope to not only gain knowledge of the product at hand, but also learn how to plan according and work as a team to build and analyze a detailed report about our subject.
- Bob Neuman: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Brian Webb: email@example.com
- Tyler Morris: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Will Sassenhausen: email@example.com
- Joe Bruzgul: firstname.lastname@example.org
The Kawasaki 8 gallon air compressor was designed to provide users with a device that can be used to power tools and complete other functions with the power of compressed air. Our specific compressor was primarily designed to be used in smaller settings like in the homestead or possibly by small contractors. It provides 140 psi of pressure which will adequately power many different tools like nail or spray guns, and is small enough that it can be transported fairly easily. By dissecting and analyzing this compressor, we were able to learn about the compressor itself as well as many different aspects of mechanical engineering.
Through the disassembly and reassembly processes, we were able to better understand how our air compressor worked. By looking through the inner workings and examining every component, subsystem, and function, we were able to gain a solid understanding of how the compressor functions, as well as the functions of smaller subsystems included in the compressor like the electric motor and piston assemblies. It was not a very complex process to disassemble or reassemble, allowing us to analyze our compressor easily without much frustration from other difficulties or challenges in the disassembly and reassembly processes. What we found through these processes is a better understanding of how energy was transferred through the compressor to complete the overall function of the compressor. For example, energy is transferred from electrical power from an external power source, where it is then converted into rotational energy through the electric motor and shaft subsystem, and is then converted again into linear kinetic energy in the piston device, which was then used to compress the air, completing the main function cycle of the compressor. There were several different components that we discovered were very important to the compressor in order to make this process efficient and reliable. For example, the inclusion of the capacitor to create a steady power output into the motor was important, allowing for a constant power transfer over to the piston. Other, simpler components like the connecting rod we found were very important despite its simplicity, as the rod was a very small and easy part to manufacture. The rod was still a very important component though in transferring energy. So the disassembly and reassembly were both very educational processes that helped us to find and learn many important things about our air compressor.
The compressor is a solid product for home use when considering what it was primarily designed for, which is light air-powered applications and small projects. Although, there were a number of improvements that we found should be made to make the compressor more efficient and user friendly. These revisions range from the component level to the system level, changing many aspects of the compressor, yet still maintaining the initial target audience at home users. By changing some of the designs like including a more user friendly interface or making the compressor a double stack design, we are able to make the compressor distinct as well as more efficient to the user, making it a more desirable product. Developing the ideas for these different revisions were an important aspect to this project, as engineers are always trying to look for ways to improve on the design of a product. This was therefore good practice in being able to think critically about what needs to be done in order to make a product more efficient and more appealing to the user.
Overall, we were able to learn very much about the practice of engineering through our findings with the compressor. Being able to work in a group setting was challenging for some yet an important learning process since it is something we will often be experiencing in the engineering field. It showed us how we need to be able to work efficiently and cooperatively with other people in order to reach the main goal of the project. It proved to be difficult at times, but it is an important skill as an engineer. Throughout our time working together on this project, we were able to learn more about cooperation and teamwork. We also found how important it was to be able to communicate the information we discovered in a clear manner that can be easily understood. This project was a good learning experience, and allowed us to learn much about being a mechanical engineer.
Here is a link to Gate 1 of our project outlining:
Gate 1 of Kawasaki Compressor Project
- Group Member Background
- Management Proposal
- Work Propsal
- Group Analysis
- Disassembly Plan
- Pre-Dissection Analysis
Here is a link to Gate 2 of our project outlining:
Gate 2 of Kawasaki Compressor Project
- Management Review
- Product Dissection
- Connection of Subsystems
Here is a link to Gate 3 of our project outlining:
- Project Management: Coordination Review
- Product Archaeology/Evalutation
- Component Analysis
- Solid Model Assembly
- Engineering Analysis
Here is a link to Gate 4 of our project outlining:
- Project Management Assessment
- Product Archaeology
- Product Reassembly Difficulty Scale
- Product Reassembly Process
- Design Revisions
Here is a link to Gate 5 of our project outlining:
- Finalization of Deliverables
- Technical Report
- Oral Presentation