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Integrating mechatronics into a mechanical engineering curriculum

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2 Author(s)
Alciatore, D.G. ; Dept. of Mech. Eng., Colorado State Univ., Fort Collins, CO, USA ; Histand, M.B.

We present what we believe is a more manageable approach to enhancing a mechatronics-based mechanical engineering program-a stepwise method to restructure a traditional mechanical engineering curriculum with a mechatronics theme. The result can be a curriculum with contemporary emphasis, enhanced content, and improved sequencing and coupling of traditional topics including modeling and analysis, computing, electrical circuits and machines, measurements and instrumentation, control theory, and design. Mechatronics provides a natural focus for this restructuring and creates an opportunity to better connect and utilize interesting exercises and design experiences throughout the curriculum. The proposed restructuring method consists of four evolutionary steps that allow manageable incremental changes that can be reasonably coordinated with faculty and laboratory development.

Published in:

Robotics & Automation Magazine, IEEE  (Volume:8 ,  Issue: 2 )