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Source: Greg Spaulding, 785-341-4845,
Web site:
News release prepared by: Nellie Ryan, 785-532-6415,

Monday, March 9, 2009


SALINA -- Engineering technology students at Kansas State University at Salina have been working with Salina area companies to design devices that solve various problems.

Industries participating include Solomon Corporation, Philips Lighting and Geoprobe Systems.

"This experience helps to prepare the students for the working world," said Greg Spaulding, associate professor of mechanical engineering technology at K-State at Salina. "This kind of experience is very important to the student as part of a well-rounded education."

At Solomon Corporation, three students teamed up to create a solution to help the company keep copper sheeting tightly wound on a spool. The students spent about five weeks creating possible designs that corresponded to their constraints of budget and time. The final device, which was built in two weeks, was a mounted spool that uses friction force to keep the copper sheeting aligned and taut. The students helped to install the device and did on-site testing. The company is still using the device.

Three K-State at Salina students created a solution for Philips Lighting to help speed up a production line without having parts fail within the line. After doing an analysis, the student team replaced and modified two crucial parts within the production line, which now can run 58 lamps per hour because of the improvements.

For Geoprobe Systems, three students helped convert a manual loading device to an automatic device that can load 1,200 pounds to 1,400 pounds at one time. After analyzing the problem and creating a design, the students used the existing parts and remodeled the loader on-site. Geoprobe Systems is still using the loader.

K-State at Salina students, all mechanical engineering technology majors, participating in the projects and the companies they served included:

ThankGod Maduabuchi, senior, Fort Riley, Geoprobe Systems; Nick Ward, junior, Galva, Philips Lighting; Mike Drach, senior, Hutchinson, Geoprobe Systems; Chad Westbrook, junior, Minneapolis, Philips Lighting.

From Salina: Paul Bijonowski, senior, Solomon Corporation; Cathy Mages, senior, Solomon Corporation; and Jason McConkey, junior, Geoprobe Systems.

Tom Leaf, senior, Solomon, Solomon Corporation; and Tyler Wudacrzyk, senior, Tecumseh, Philips Lighting.