Stage 1: Ott and Seaton prepare for takeoff

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The sky is the limit for NIU College of Engineering & Engineering Technology students Josh Ott and Derek Seaton.  Ott and Seaton will be assembling a pulsejet engine, fire spitting and all.  The pair’s Senior Design project will be a yearlong collaboration of Ott’s mechanical engineeringbackground and Seaton’s electrical engineeringexpertise.
Senior Designis day at the end of the semester the seniors of NIU-CEET present a design project within their department for at least a semester long.  These projects give students a creative outlet and competitive edge to implement what they learn in the classroom, to a real-life application. 
What you don’t know about pulsejet engines is that they need airflow to start.  The pair hopes to overcome this problem and create an engine that is self-staring and has an adjustable operational frequency (more control in adjusting the throttle of the engine), which are two obstacles that have never been done.

Ott & Seaton’s inspiration, but will be constructing an entirely new pulsejet engine

 Two problems that the students will be focusing on & will be the primary focus for members of ETAS (Engineering Technology Alumni Society) to access them on are:
  1. Noise
  2. Vibration
They will be taking various steps in order to control the volume and the amount of vibration of the engine while it is operating.
While Ott has always dreamt of becoming a pilot, Seaton is a licensed pilot, which drew the pair together for this project. 
In steps to come…
Ott is working on the convocational fluid analysis of the engine, trying to nail the dimensions of the engine so that when they begin to build next semester, the prototype is ready.  In the meantime, Seaton will be designing the control system. 
What we have to look forward to is, “Designing the actual jet that were going to use for our Senior Design project and we need to find a company that can make some stainless steel parts for us.  Next semester will be testing and fine-tuning so that we can get our project on an actual airplane,” Ott explains. 
Ott & Seaton obtained their own student project room 
For Senior Design Day, “We will not only be talking about what is novel about the engine and why it is a good substitute for internal combustion and turbine jet engines but also what markets were looking to get it into for research and commercial applications of it,” says Seaton. 
Stay tuned throughout the journey they are beginning to embark, as we will be following up with them up until Senior Design Day Spring 2014!

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