Homayounpour makes “Impact” at HFES 2019

PhD student Mohammad Homayounpour presented his work on directional warnings and head kinematics on October 30, 2019 at the 63rd Annual HFES meeting in Seattle, WA (http://www.hfes2019.org/). His work highlights the values of preparing for impact through postural changes and muscle clenching to reduce head kinematics that have been linked to concussion risk. This is part of a large project funded by NSF to create smart helmets to reduce concussion risk to athletes playing contact sports. For more information, please refer to the conference paper found here.

Welcome Visiting Student

Thomas Starzinger is a medical engineering student from the University of Applied Sciences Upper Austria. His supervisor from his home university is Prof. PD Dr. Thomas Haslwanter. He will be participating in the TetraSki project for the next 4 months. His primary focus is to develop additional safety features for the TetraSki.  The project will involve designing a roll over protection and improved seating system to allow skiers to safely push the technology to new limits. 

We are looking forward to working with Thomas over the next four months and welcome him to the Ergonomics and Safety Lab!

Merryweather & Mortensen Team up for Webinar 2019

Dr. Merryweather and Dr. Mortensen recently teamed up to present a webinar entitled “OpenSim as a Platform for Improving Quantitative Ergonomic Assessments”. This was presented as part of the NIOSH ERC Ergonomics Webinar Series.

The webinar provided a brief overview of OpenSim as a modeling platform to improve ergonomic risk assessment. Dr. Merryweather and Dr. Mortensen demonstrated how OpenSim agrees with other analytical methods, specifically RULA, and present scenarios where OpenSim can be used to evaluate task level risk, including how to account for worker specific risk factors (i.e. previous injury, muscle weakness and fatigue) in conjunction with other physical risk factors (i.e. posture, force, repetition, duration). Finally, a summary of some limitations and future work using OpenSim for ergonomic risk assessment was provided.

2019 Paul S. Richards-WCF Safe Workplace Scholarship

Four of our students were awarded with the Paul S. Richards Safe Workplace Scholarship this year. Our students are fortunate to have such incredible support from the community, and especially WCF Insurance (https://www.wcf.com/). The unwavering support of WCF and the Paul S. Richards Memorial Foundation inspires us to contribute to the safety profession and aspire to be more caring and concerned with the many individuals who work to keep our world turning.

Congratulations Mohammad, Amir, Roya and Dorothy!!

National Biomechanics Day 2019

On April 13th we participated in our first NBD. National Biomechanics day is a celebration of biomechanics science for STEM and STEAM education. Groups from Mechanical Engineering, Kinesiology and Orthopedics hosted high school students, undergraduates and others from the community in an interactive demonstration of biomechanics. Thanks for all who made it possible, especially Jon, Dorothy, Mohammad, and Mitja! 

National Biomechanics Day

Moriah Henning at Research on Capitol Hill

Undergraduate researcher Moriah Henning was selected to present her work at the 19th Annual Research on Capitol Hill event on March 5th 2019. Moriah completed two semesters of research under Dr. Andrew Merryweather on characterizing the open-source, 3D-printed, InMoov robotic hand as part of the Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP). She analyzed the hand’s limitations and abilities through computer and physical testing to better understand improvements that could be made to the design.

U student researchers head to Capitol Hill

Senior Design Team Invited to Dublin, Ireland!

Advised by mechanical engineering assistant professor Andrew Merryweather, the senior design project Wearable Tremor Damping Device, was selected as one of the six finalists for the 2018 Undergraduate Design Project Competition in Rehabilitation and Assistive Devices at the 8th World Congress of Biomechanics July 8-12, 2018, Dublin, Ireland. There the team was given the opportunity to present their design at a special podium presentation.

Ms. Mikaela Hayward and Prof. Andrew S. Merryweather are pictured above in Dublin.  The entire team is pictured below and from, left to right, are MEEN BS 2018 Seniors Kory Cross, Irsyad Badri, Mikaela Hayward, Quincy Stevens, and Hyrum Peterson.