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Senior engineering students tackle global issues in innovative graduation projects
Ninety engineering senior design projects tackling global and local issues of health, sustainability, 3D printing, robotics, Internet of Things (IoT), the environment, water treatment, and renewable energy competed this year at the American University of Sharjah (AUS) College of Engineering (CEN) Capstone Projects Competition.
These graduation projects represent the culmination of the academic and intellectual experience for engineering students in their final year at AUS. Students worked in groups under the guidance of their CEN academic advisors and industry mentors for a whole year to complete their projects and qualify for the competition.
The top three projects from each of the college’s six departments were announced at the end of the competition with one project also winning the student popular vote.
“We have had an outstanding line-up of senior design projects this semester and I have witnessed how much our students have matured in their fields of specialization. We have seen their projects grow from conception to research, design, implementation, testing and production. The students’ distinguished work reflects not only their technical knowledge but also on the soft skills that they developed during their educational journey at AUS,” said Dr. Fadi Aloul, Dean of CEN.
He added: “I am proud of this new generation of innovators, problem solvers and free thinkers and I cannot wait to see their achievements after their graduation. We have always placed students at the heart of our work in the College of Engineering, and I am grateful for the dedication of our faculty who continuously ensure that our students are equipped with the skills needed for the 21st century. I am very proud of the projects I saw in the competition and a big congratulations to the winners."
Winning first place in chemical engineering was the project “Folic Acid Conjugated Liposomes Targeting Cancer Using Low-Frequency Ultrasound Release” by students Taima Alhazaimeh, Leanne Shahin, Aya ElGazar and Noor Al Bahnasawi.
The project designed a novel large-scale process for the production of nanocarriers encapsulating a chemotherapy drug that targets cancerous cells and sparing healthy ones in the process. The nanocarrier uses folic acid, which directs these nanovehicles to the tumor cells. Once at the cancer site, the therapeutic contents are released using ultrasound. The nanocarriers were responsive to ultrasound and released 80 percent of their contents within three minutes of activating the ultrasound.
In second place came the project “Process Design for the Production of Cumene” by students Maram Alkhadar, Abdirahman Aden, Maitha Almansoori and Abdulaziz Alhababi, followed by the project “Adsorption of Dyes from Textile Industry Waste with ZIF-8” in third place by students Mohammed Usama Alhaj, Hamdan Qaderi, Mohammad Zaman and Hamda Bukhatir.
In civil engineering, the winning project tackled “Concrete Sustainability Through Crumb Rubber and Ground Granulated Blast-furnace Slag” by students Seifeldin Abbas, Mazen Abdelkhalek and Raed Jameel.
One of the biggest problems in the civil engineering industry today is that the traditional methods used to produce concrete contribute to global CO2 emissions. To combat such issues and achieve higher sustainability, the student team tested alternatives that would decrease these emissions by up to 50 percent. They replaced harmful components in the concrete with crumb, which is made of scrap tires. They conducted tests to compare the quality of crumb rubber concrete and normal concrete, and their results have shown great potential. The students plan to publish their findings in a research journal this summer.
Coming in second place in civil engineering were students Iyad Shahin, Habibelrahman Hassan and Mohamed Khalifa for their project “Structural Performance of Fiber-Reinforced 3D Printed Concrete,” followed by students Afreen Fathaq, Lulwa AlGhanim, Omar Binshakir and Alsharif Mohammed for their project “Factors Affecting the Bid-or-No Bid Decision in Sustainable Construction Projects.”
In computer science and engineering, the team Adham Abdelnaby, Ahmed Elmeligy, Nadeen Tarek and Nouran Sheta won first place. Their project, “Deep Learning for Edge Anomaly Detection in Multidimensional IOT Data,” aimed to detect the formation of mold in silos used to store grains. Despite cooling techniques used in these silos to maintain grains, once mold forms, it spreads rapidly damaging the harvest. The project proposes the use of sensors that detect changes in temperatures in silos and send warning signals calling for action.
Coming in second place was the project “Multi-Sensor System to Predict Early Signs of Spine Disease” by students Ashith Farhan, Farooq Mirza, Joel D' Souza and Sabbir Alam. In third place came the student team Yasmin Abouhelwo, Ali Mohsen, Maya Wehbe and Motasem Al Jayousi for their project “A Smart Indoor Robot Guide for Visually Impaired People.”
The project “Portable-Low-Cost Laboratory for Electronics Analysis (Multimeter-Capacitance and Inductance)” won first place in electrical engineering. Designed by students Subhi Jalal Qutob and Ebrahim Abdulla Alahmed, the project aimed to develop a low-cost compact device that has the features of large, expensive equipment commonly found in electronics labs. The device aims to provide students with an easy and affordable way to test electronics without the need of professional-grade equipment.
Achieving second place was the project “Arabic Sign Language Recognition using Radar Technology” by students Ali Meqdad Alsuwaidi, Mohammad Alfalasi and Abdulrahman Alobeidli, followed by the project “Helper Bot” in third place by students Afra Alsalami, Darin Mashaly and Hebah Rabah.
In industrial engineering, students Ali Mahfouz, Ashba Alketbi, Mariam Ghanem, Mohamad Al Najar and Abdulrahman Al Abadilah won first place for their project “Assessment of Patients Readmission at MOHAP Healthcare Facilities.”
The project focused on patient admission in the UAE healthcare system. It analyzed 17 hospitals across the country and looked into patient admissions for the last four years (2018–2021) using statistical analysis and advanced machine learning models. The team successfully identified critical areas where they can contribute to the improvement of the system.
In second place came students Zainab Al-Lami, Tamara Darayseh, Haneen Abdelrhman and Salma Alameldin for their project “Water Optimization in CEA,” followed by students Mohammed Aboobacker, Rayan Mohamed Ben Daya, Almoatsem Bellah EL-Barag, Abusufiyan Shaikh and Ghaith Rashid Sharar in third place for their project “Machine Learning for 3D-Printing Fault Detection and Classification.”
In mechanical engineering, the student team Yacoub Suleiman, Sherif Ismail, Mohamad Barakji, Naser Taifour and Mohamed Hemid won first place for their project “Portable Piezoelectric Flag for Wind Energy Harvesting.”
The project examined the use of wind energy as a renewable and sustainable energy source. The student team proposed a system that harnesses wind energy and stores it for later use. The designed system is portable, easily deployable and self-sustaining as it can operate without human intervention. The proposed energy solution comprises an aluminum flag designed to flutter at certain wind speeds to which a piezoelectric material is attached to convert the induced mechanical vibrations from the wind into electrical energy to power electronic devices. The system is also equipped with an energy storage circuit to store the generated energy over time for later use.
Winning second place in mechanical engineering and the student popular vote was the project “Design, Construction, and Testing of a Sewage Inspection Robot.” Designed by students Abdulla Almuhairi, Ali Raza, Mazen Mohammedfaris, Fauwad Qureshi and Ahsan Zamir. The project proposes a prototype of an in-pipe inspection robot to remotely inspect sewer pipes of varying sizes for preventive maintenance since sewage pipes are either too small or too hazardous for people to inspect in person.
Coming in third place in mechanical engineering was the project “Designing a Mobile Robot that Can Clean Solar Panels” by students Noman Khan, Fatma Ahli, Mohammad Yasin, Layan Almarai and Mohammad Alhareb.
The CEN Capstone Projects Competition was sponsored by Petrofac and Sharjah National Oil Corporation.
The College of Engineering at American University of Sharjah is a leader in engineering education in the UAE and region. It boasts state-of-the-art facilities and internationally recognized faculty members for their research. CEN is committed to providing quality education through its undergraduate and graduate programs.
For more information about the College of Engineering at AUS, please visit www.aus.edu/cen.