NFPA Curriculum Grants Awarded

The NFPA Education and Technology Foundation awards grants of up to $25,000 to 4-year universities to develop, replicate, or disseminate high-quality, high-impact undergraduate-level fluid power curriculum. These initiatives engage faculty in the teaching of fluid power and create heightened awareness of and engagement with fluid power among students — the next generation of engineering leaders.

Grants were recently awarded to Professor Liu at Lawrence Technological University and Professor Pagan at Ohio University. Congratulations on your successful proposals!

LiuProject Title: Development of Fluid-Power Based Modules for Fluid Mechanics and Thermodynamics Courses Utilizing Problem-Based Learning and Entrepreneurially-Minded Learning

Project Leaders: Drs. Liping Liu, James Mynderse, Robert Fletcher, Andrew Gerhart, A. Leon Linton Department of Mechanical Engineering, Lawrence Technological University

Project Description: This project aims to develop new fluid power modules for Fluid Mechanics and Thermodynamics, core undergraduate engineering courses, that utilize problem-based learning and entrepreneurially minded techniques to create awareness and engage students in fluid power. The new modules will focus on developing a comprehensive fluid power teaching tool, which includes lecture materials, student activities, in-class demonstrations (where appropriate), and instructions for deployment by other instructors. Modules designed for Fluid Mechanics will focus on addressing hydraulics-related applications and modules designed for Thermodynamics will focus on pneumatics. These materials will be made available open-source for all universities interested in incorporating fluid power technology in undergraduate engineering curriculum.

For more information, Prof. Liu can be reached at lliu1@ltu.edu.

PaganProject Title: Interactive Simulation Modules for Pneumatic and Hydraulic Circuits

Project Leader: Jesus Pagan, Assistant Professor, Department of Engineering Technology and Management, Russ College of Engineering and Technology, Ohio University

Project Description: This project aims to develop and implement a cloud-based system that students can easily access from any device or location to learn and practice basic pneumatic and hydraulic circuits. The cloud-based system will host the educational model content and files needed to support a 3D graphic interface with a library of common pneumatic and hydraulic components that students can select to design and build circuits, simulate the operation, and verify the sequence and operation of the machines or devices being used. The intended benefits of the proposed implementation will reduce the cost of adding equipment to an undergraduate program given the increased demand for pneumatic and hydraulic labs. This system will provide a mechanism to broadly share the tools and modules created at Ohio University to promote fluid power education.

For more information, Prof. Pagan can be reached at paganj@ohio.edu.

The NFPA Curriculum Grant Program solicitation will be available on an annual basis, offered each spring. The recent program solicitation, proposal template, assessment rubric, and electronic application are available here.

Contact Alyssa Burger at alyssa@umn.edu with any questions.

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