Product-Safety Engineering Textbook Now Available

A book by the Ergonomics & Safety Program’s Prof. Kenneth d’Entremont is now available from the publisher, McGraw Hill, and through many on-line retailers worldwide.

The book is titled Engineering Ethics and Design for Product Safety (DfPS) and could be the only text or professional book on the topic of product-safety engineering. The book presents an informed, yet unbiased, approach to designing safe products for consumers. The pivotal role of ethics is stressed to current and future design engineers working on products with the capability of injuring their users. The book covers both fundamental concepts and methods for application during DfPS where safe characteristics are designed into a product.

Years of industrial experience as a consulting engineer and later as manager of product-safety engineering for a large designer/manufacturer of hazardous products provided many insights and examples used in the book. A course at the University of Utah, ME EN 5150/6150, served as a mechanism for refining the curriculum which is also presented in the book. That book serves as a textbook for this course.

Among other things, the book and the course help the engineer, and others, answer the questions:

  • How does a priority differ from a value–and why does it matter?
  • Is it possible to teach ethics to engineering students and engineers?
  • To whom does the engineer owe allegiance?
  • When is a product “safe enough?

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.

Dr. Hejrati’s work collaborating with our laboratory published in IEEE transactions on neural systems and rehabilitation engineering

Dr. Babak Hejrati’s  work with Dr. Merryweather and Dr. Abbott under title of “Generating Arm-swing Trajectories in Real-time Using a Data-driven Model for Gait Rehabilitation with Self-selected Speed” published in IEEE transactions on neural systems and rehabilitation engineering. Laboratory of Ergonomics and Safety congratulates him for this achievement and also for joining faculty of Mechanical Engineering at University of Maine.