Projects, Products and Research

I have worked on numerous projects in classes and during hackathons, and have always tried to solve real world problems to impact the lives of everyday people through purpose driven product design. I thrive in work environments that require lots of teamwork and collaboration, and strive to set high standards through the quality of my work. I am looking to work with engineering teams to expand my technical knowledge in a practical engineering application.

Some examples of my projects are listed below:

Robot Metabolism Project

Columbia University - Creative Machines Lab

Feb 2021 – Present

Research Assistant with Dr. Hod Lipson.

Smart Bin Remover

Purdue University

Oct 2015 – May 2016

Throughout my time in college, I have been a part of many teams and worked on multiple projects. For our Senior Design Capstone Project, my team and I designed and built an innovative, fully autonomous robot that can attach to the three most common types of waste bins and deliver the attached bin to a desired pick up location on trash day. First, we defined the problem we were trying to solve, then we built a prototype, tested the software and controls, and evaluated the results. We repeated these steps numerous times and, several iterations later, ended with a product that was completely different from what we had imagined. We looked at various aspects of the robot, such as ease-of-use for the end user, durability of our product, ability to integrate with the existing systems and ability to meet the design parameters set by our end user (the local Waste Management company). We also designed the charging pod and programmed the robot to find its way back to the base, where it would plug in and charge itself when not in use. I headed the programming of the robot using an Arduino microcontroller and led the integration and testing of "smart" technologies to remove all user interaction. The Smart Bin Remover project placed 7th place (out of 49 total submissions) at the Mechanical Engineering Innovation Competition at Purdue University.
Watch Video | Pitch Deck | Photo Gallery

T2P2D - Toys to Physics to Design

Purdue University - C Design Lab

Aug 2014 – Dec 2014

Research Assistant with Dr. Karthik Ramani.
The purpose of this project was to develop a framework to encourage a maker-based design mindset embedded in physics for K-12 students.
• Developed STEM-focused teaching "Engineering by Design" workshops for K-12 students to design simple toys and 3D print them.
• Benchmarked different open source CAD software and categorized them by ease-of-use.
• Manufactured prototypes using 3D printing technologies (Ultimaker 2, Makerbot).

HandiMate

Purdue University - C Design Lab

Aug 2014 – Dec 2014

Research Assistant with Dr. Karthik Ramani.
• Created a robotics kit which enables users to construct and animate their toys using everyday craft materials.
• Proposed new and innovative uses for the product using everyday objects such as cardboard, construction paper and spoons.
• Tested and gave feedback on various constructions and promoted brainstorming among users.

Laser Cut Box

Columbia University

Jan 2021 – Feb 2021

The goal of this project was to perform software-driven fabrication. My partner and I wrote a program that asks the user for box dimensions, then generates an SVG file for laser-cutting and folding cardboard. This file can be imported into a laser-cutter software where the laser's power and speed settings are set for each line color. We selected three colors for our box design, one for cutting and two for engraving with different laser intensities.
Watch Video | Project Report | Photo Gallery

https://www.instagram.com/tv/CLhbYiuJZ0U
https://twitter.com/CUSEAS/status/1359214029131165698
https://youtu.be/7u0MZNJsSTI

Tealight Holder (Lampshade Lattice)

Columbia University

Feb 2021

The goal of this project was to perform generative design for 3D printing. I designed and 3D printed a lamp shade made entirely of a lattice design. I wrote a program that generated the lamp shade’s geometry procedurally and accommodated three LED tea-lights. The software used was OpenSCAD, which allowed me to output my file in STL format. This file could then be imported into a 3D printer slicer software in order to be 3D printed.
Watch Video | Project Report | Photo Gallery

Embroidery

Columbia University

March 2021

The goal of this project was to perform software-controlled embroidery. I wrote a program that generated an embroidery design with multiple basic shapes and a parametric fractal shape. In order to perform over-stitching and to make the pattern stand out, all straight edges of the design were converted to a zig-zag pattern in the code. The program requests the user to input the desired complexity and outputs a JEF file for the user to visualize on Hatch. Finally, the pattern was sewn on a real garment using an automated embroidery machine (Janome MC9900). Our design added some complexity by using multiple thread types, thread colors and spacing between shapes.
Watch Video | Project Report | Photo Gallery

Project LiT

University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign - HackIllinois Hackathon

Feb 2016

Received recognition for creating one of the best hardware hacks at Hack Illinois, one of the largest University Hackathons in the country with over 1000 participants. We created an internet connected wearable breathalyzer to warn people when they are over the alcohol permissible limit for driving. It uses an OLED panel that notifies you of your blood alcohol content and an RGB LED strip that alerts everyone around you if have crossed the legal limit, so your friends can stop you from driving or stop themselves from getting in the car with you. My contributions included implementing the engineering design process and writing code to integrate all the electrical components using an Arduino microcontroller. Project LiT won top 5 for best hardware hack out of 216 total submissions at the HackIllinois Hackathon at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Project LiT | Pitch Deck | Photo Gallery

Project Green Light

Purdue University - BoilerMake Hackathon

Oct 2015

Project Green Light is a social initiative which helps people connect more easily. It provides you information such as table availability and status through data collected from the Arduino devices. My contributions included collaborating on the design and build of the product, developing the product all the way from ideation to completion and working on the presentation and documentation for the project. Over the weekend-long event, my team and I wanted to design something new and bring it to life, and we truly believe this product will revolutionize your social interactions. Project Green Light won top 5 for best hack out of 84 total submissions at the BoilerMake Hackathon at Purdue University.
Project Green Light | Pitch Deck | Photo Gallery

Project BigDoc

Washington University St. Louis - ArchHacks Hackathon

Nov 2016

Project BigDoc is a managed care solution that uses big data technologies to proactively prevent medical emergencies. Healthcare enterprises are currently investing a lot of money in personalized preventative care plans for people who lack access to basic healthcare due to lack of money, transportation or resources. I managed the engineering development process of the product. Generated and evaluated all the content around the idea from the ideation phase. Designed the solution and innovated to overcome challenges and find future uses
Project BigDoc | Pitch Deck | Photo Gallery

Dentist Face Shields

In late May, a local dentist reached out to me saying that her clinic was in dire need of face shields, as the ones they ordered online were delayed and new orders would take too long arrive.
(Refer to COVID projects page)
Problem Statement:
• Design a face shield to be worn over the face of dental professionals
• Reduce the risk of contact with infectious splash, splatter and spray to protect face better than glasses and masks alone
Constraints:
• Distance between face and the shield must be 2.5" at minimum, because magnifying loupes and lights have to fit
• Shield must extend as far back as possible from the sides, preferably up to ears
• Comfortable to be worn for a long period of time
Results:
• Designed and delivered face shields within 3 days to the dentist's office
• Fit over dentist glasses, loupes, lights and masks
• 11x17 size plastic cover covered the full face, up to the ears
• Cushion lining between forehead and mask allowed for a comfortable, relaxed fit
• Ability to adjust length of elastic strap by untying the knot, or simply replacing the strap for a larger size
   * Future designs could adjust strap length by using fabric with a hat buckle instead of elastic
• Mini-shield on top protected from overhead splatter
• Shields can be disinfected, washed and reused, thus reducing waste
• All parts of the face shield can be replaced so the dentist can discard the plastic, strap or padding if needed
• This face shield is perfect for: Dentists, Dental Assistants, Dental Hygienists and Lab Techs

Front Front View
Back Back View
Dentist1 Dentist 1
Dentist2 Dentist 2

Helping Students Return to School

As local and federal governments started looking for ways to reopen schools, it was clear that much more needed to be done to assure parents that their kids will be safe when they return to school. Over the summer, the NYC Department of Education held several engagement sessions with families to learn their concerns and provide updates on the steps the city has been taking to mainatin a healthy learning environment.

As an MEP Design Consultant, it was obvious to me that a properly maintained and operated heating, ventilation and air-conditioning (HVAC) system can reduce the spread of viruses. Alongside proper handwashing and social distancing, air filtration, humidity levels, percentage of outside air and air distribution are all key to improving productivity and health in indoor spaces.

In late August, Mayor Bill de Blasio and the NYC School Construction Authority (SCA) started forming Ventilation Action Teams (In the news: NY1, CBS and ABC) to ensure air flow in all student and staff spaces across each of the 1,700 schools in NYC. The goal of this project was to enable students and staff to return to schools in September 2020 by inspecting the existing Ventilation systems. Classrooms deemed unfit either had their issues addressed, or the spaces were taken offline until the systems were made functional.
As one of the Action Team members, I surveyed numerous schools across NYC, including New Dorp High School in Staten Island.
Click here to see the checklist results and here to see DOE's reopening plan for this school. * All files are available for download directly from DOE's website.

Making sense of the data:
Per the 2014 NYC Mechanical Code (Table 403.3), classrooms must bring in at least 10 CFM of outside air per person and at least 0.12 CFM of outside air per square-foot of space. Similarly, staff offices must bring in at least 5 CFM per person and 0.06 CFM per square-foot.
The old Mechanical Code (prior to 2008) allowed spaces with operable windows to be used for natural ventilation based on the index of ventilation. However, the new code (2008 and 2014) allows operable windows to be used for natural ventilation if the windows provide 4% openable area. If the thresholds to use natural window ventilation are not met, mechanical ventilation (exhaust fans) would have to be coupled with the operable windows.
For windowless buildings or rooms not located against the perimeter with openable windows, the ventilation would come from the mechanical supply system.
I'll leave you with the below excerpt from the code:
102.4.1 Minor additions, alterations, renovations and repairs to existing mechanical systems shall meet the provisions for new construction, unless such work is done in the same manner and arrangement as was in the existing system, is not hazardous and is approved.

The next phase of the project was to provide immediate recommendations to repair the ventilation systems and make long-term recommendations for future improvements. The teams prepared scope reports, construction cost estimates and detail design drawings to make the air handling systems operable either through reparation of defective parts or a complete replacement. As part of one of those teams, some examples of recommendations I made were airstream disinfection, increasing the amount of fresh air intake, selecting exhaust fans to maintain a negative air pressure in the room, and displacement ventilation (in which cooler air enters from below and lifts contaminants). Some non-HVAC recommendations were installing antimicrobial polymer surfaces or copper alloy surfaces which naturally kill viruses.

Before Before: July 20, 2020
After After: August 31, 2020
IS 49 (R049) | Staten Island, NY (748 students and 141 staff)

Watch my video contribution to Columbia University's Keep Our Community Healthy campaign on YouTube

https://www.universitylife.columbia.edu/student-voices

Pool Restoration

Princeton Engineering Services

May 2019-Present

Provided engineering design services to the NYC School Construction Authority (SCA) for the M440 interior restoration and reconstruction of the existing defective pool foundation walls at the sub-cellar and cellar levels along with interior renovations of the adjacent pool areas, bathrooms and natatorium at the cellar level. In addition, a new elevator will be provided at the first-floor level down to the pool area for accessibility compliance.
Located in Manhattan, M440 (also known as James Baldwin School / Bayard Rustin Educational Complex) was constructed circa 1930’s. The building is located at 351 W 18th Street, and contains an approximate student population of 2,130 students, serving 09 through 12 grades.
The overall project objective is to address the conditions of the existing reinforced pool plunge structure measuring 75 feet x 28 feet (96,200 gallon capacity) located at the sub-cellar level, including active water leakage through the plunge walls, and multiple cracks at the enameled brick of the pool-side finished surface, and provide accessibility for all new spaces, including the renovated Natatorium, adjacent toilets, showers, lockers, and offices. Also, provied new water filtration, dehumidification, ventilation and steam condensate systems for the natatorium.
I designed ductwork and sized new De-humidification unit and Air-Handling units to serve the natatorium and locker rooms based on design criteria per IMC, NYC MC. Designed and performed calculations for new pool water filtration system, hot water boiler and new plumbing fixtures for locker room and toilets. Led a team of engineers, architects, and draftsmen as prime engineer on this project.
The project's construction cost was $12,027,000.
Photo Gallery

Special Education Classroom

Princeton Engineering Services

Jan 2019-Sep 2019

Provided engineering design services for the NYCSCA to convert an existing first floor classroom (Room 136) into a new Home Economics / Activities of Daily Living Room (ADL).
Located in Brooklyn, K753 (also known as Aveyron Academy) has over 65 students who have been determined to be at-risk in their daily living skills for numerous reasons including autism, emotional disturbance, seizure disorders, cognitive delays or other economic or language-based difficulties.
The overall project objective was to transform the existing space of current living classroom (Room 136) into a home economics classroom that would enable at-risk students to improve their social, emotional, functional and vocabulary skills through utilization of real-world scenarios and by having access to various space functions including a full working kitchen with sinks, cabinets, counter work space, stools, oven, stove, microwave, and dishwasher; a laundry station with a washing machine and dryer; a living room sitting TV area; and a general learning area with computer stations.
Students in this innovative classroom environment are now able to cook hot foods, wash and dry clothing, fold and put away clothing, iron, wash and dry dishes, learn how to mend clothing, prepare and implement a shopping list and budget, and clean and keep a tidy studio apartment. Teachers are also able to monitor the students in a friendly and comfortable setting based on the students’ specific needs.
Our design concept not only allowed students with disabilities to overcome various difficulties in order to succeed in school, but also helped them to develop the necessary skills that prepared them for post-secondary independence. Our design solution provided students with multi-sensory and practical experience for navigating and living in the community.
Addressing the real-world needs of students who have been determined to be at-risk in their daily living skills for numerous reasons including autism, emotional disturbance, seizure disorders, cognitive delays or other economic or language-based difficulties, my team at Princeton Engineering Services and the NYC School Construction Authority (SCA) developed a new typology of educational space, the Home Economics/Activities of Daily Living Room (ADL).
This new typology is geared to not only allow students with disabilities to overcome various difficulties in order to succeed in school, but also help them to develop the necessary skills that will prepare them for post-secondary independence. Our design solution provides students with multi-sensory experiences that will provide practical experience for navigating and living in the community.
The project's construction cost was $490,000.
Photo Gallery

Technology Lab

Princeton Engineering Services

Jan 2019-Sep 2019

Provided engineering design services for the NYCSCA to convert an existing third floor classroom (Room 343) into a new technology lab.
Located in the Bronx, X593 currently shares the building (X145) with other schools and has a bilingual school population of 47 students.
The overall project objective was for SYSTRA to transform the existing classroom (Room 343) into a technology lab that would enable the school to use the space as a high-end technology lab and provide flexibility to transform the space into a regular bilingual classroom to accommodate up to 28 students. The new technology lab included a new smart board, wireless mac laptops and associated work stations.
Students in this innovative classroom environment are now able to receive personal attention from teachers. Our layout was designed to support a friendly and comfortable setting based on the students’ specific bilingual needs.
The project's construction cost was $475,000.
Photo Gallery