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Project Examples

Water Tank Support System for a School in Raypa, Peru


Course: 22.425 - Design Machine Elements
Semester: Fall 2005
Instructor: Chris Niezrecki
Partner: Village Empowerment Peru Project

Three students tackled this project in order to design a safe structure to locate a water tank near the perimeter of the school in Raypa. Due to the lack of running water, a design for a water supply storage tank system was analyzed to allow running water to be accessible to a school located in Peru. Raypa is a remote Andean village in Peru in which running water is only accessible in the morning. A storage tank would allow running water to be available throughout the day. Two different options were considered to investigate which would be a more viable structure. The tower was analyzed for static loads and recommendations for maintenance and prevention were shared in a final report to ensure a long useful life. A tower was designed with the goals to use less metal than current towers in the region.

Learning objectives met by the S-L project were for students to:

  • Experience the design process, including working directly with a community partners
  • The principles of mechanics and commonly used failure theories were applied to the design and analysis of machine elements subjected to static and dynamic (fatigue) load conditions.
  • Elements studied included power screws, bolts, springs, bearings, gears, lubrication, shafts, brakes, clutches, and belts.
  • Student designs included a stress analysis or fatigue analysis that integrated recommendations
  • Write brief technical reports and incorporate drawings

Community objectives met by the S-L project:

  • Individual partners derived benefit through appropriate mechanical designs tailored to specific needs
  • The LNHP project produced reports that continue to serve as potential mechanical designs to address this ongoing community need.