Fluid Power Student Profile: Jenna McGuire

We’ve written before about the Center for Compact and Efficient Fluid Power (CCEFP)—the network of fluid power research laboratories, academic faculty, graduate and undergraduate students at nine universities—that is making a difference in preparing a better-educated workforce for the fluid power industry. The CCEFP has created a 500% increase in the number of fluid power focused advanced degrees awarded in the United States, with almost half of its graduates going on to work in the fluid power industry. Here is one of its students.

Jenna McGuire Student ProfileJenna McGuire, currently pursuing a master’s degree at the University of Minnesota, previously attended Southern Methodist University where she graduated magna cum laude with a bachelor’s in mechanical engineering, a minor in civil engineering, and a bachelor’s in mathematics. She is currently pursuing a manufacturing, quality, or mechanical design position within a medical device company, where she would like to conduct research and development. She has worked with neuromodulators previously, but is open to any medical device.

Jenna’s research concerns the Test Bed 3: Hydraulic Hybrid Passenger Vehicle (HHPV) with the Center for Compact and Efficient Fluid Power. The HHPV is a hybrid vehicle that uses hydraulic accumulators as energy storage and a pair of pumps/motors to regulate pressure and deliver torque to the output shaft. The advantages of using fluid power over electrical power in a hybrid vehicle are that fluid power allows for much higher power density, and by using off-the-shelf components it is cheaper and more environmentally friendly than using batteries. The goals of the project are to achieve an efficient, power dense, and compact vehicle that uses fluid power and to identify the needs and technology required for these specifications. Jenna’s research has been primarily focused on modeling the system, developing control programs for the vehicle, and creating and implementing high-level energy optimization strategies for hybridization.

Jenna chose to study mechanical engineering because of her love of math, mechanical design, and analysis. In particular, she had passions for dynamics, structures, and fluid motion. Her work on the HHPV has been a wonderful opportunity to engage in these interests. Jenna feels engineering is an excellent way to contribute to society, and to make a positive difference. This is also the reason that she is actively pursuing a career within the medical device industry. Jenna has found that her thoroughness and attention to detail work well in a regulated environment as a quality or mechanical engineer.

Jenna can be contacted at: mcgui344@umn.edu 

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