Timothy Spafford

Role: Member

Major: Mechanical Engineering

Year: Junior


Wilbraham, MA


Imagineering the Future Other Presenters: (No other presenters)

A peek into how Disney engineers the theme parks we all know and love! Students learn the basics of potential and kinetic energy applications involved with roller coasters design and enjoyment. Simplifies the centripetal forces involved with the twists and turns. As well as friction and how it leads to the sudden stops that characterize many of Disney’s roller coasters. Students participate in a competition to design and build the best roller coaster inspired by a new understanding of forces, energy and Imagineering.

Mathematics and Path Finding Robots Other Presenters: Matthew Jahnes, David Glowny

The presentation begins with examples and definitions of a robot, algorithm, and path finding. Then we start a small discussion on the applications of mathematics in robotics by providing examples of both simple and complex applications. We break mid-presentation for the hands on activity. The hands on activity mostly involves the simple equation: circumference * # of rotations = distance traveled. The end goal of the activity is to have the kids program a small NXT robot to move and pick up a ball without using trial and error. We give them a handout that has the recommended paths and distances the robot should cover as well as information on the dimensions of the robot so they can make the calculations. After the hands on activity we close the presentation with a short discussion on modeling the behavior of some small single celled organisms (E-coli) with mathematical algorithms as well as the future of path finding robotics (like autonomous cars).

Digital Sound Other Presenters: Denver Overend, David Glowny, Mallory Gordon, Nickolas Ziter

People rely on the engineering behind the science of sound everyday, whether its through listening to an Ipod, setting up speakers for a public event, or even through hearing aids. And yet, in this digital age, it is not clear to many people how exactly sound is stored in a digital device, what sound actually is, and how sound can be produced electronically. Therefore, this presentation displays and explains the intriguing engineering behind sound and its application in electronic devices.

Jet Engines Other Presenters: Vladimir Ramos-Vasquez, Jaime Lord, Frederick Hole

This presentation provides an overview of how jet engines operate, describing each main component within the system. It also explores the vigorous testing processes that these engines must undergo, as well as the various uses for jet engines.