Mechatronics

Gary Baker
manufacturing@bigbend.edu

The mechatronics courses are included in several programs at BBCC, such as Manufacturing and Industrial Systems Technology. They prepare students with the knowledge, skills, and abilities required to begin careers as technicians or entrepreneurs in electronics, robotics, internet of things (IoT), 3D manufacturing, control systems, communications, security, and many other emerging physical computing fields. Students will study, circuits, sensors, troubleshooting, programming, communications, data acquisition, and data collection.

Mechatronics involves gaining knowledge of electronics, microcontrollers, microcomputers, Open-Source hardware and software, programming, 3D printing, and CAD design. Instead of buying expensive textbooks, students begin buying and owning their own lab composed of electronics, devices, components, test equipment, tools, and computers. Using these items, they will study the theories of operation of both passive and active electronic components, servos, motors, sensors, LEDs, switches, indicators, breadboards, etc. Using their own lab equipment, students may build and program electronic systems, 3D printers, rovers, radio-controllers, quadcopters, GPS trackers, navigation systems, cloud connectivity, and mission control software.

Courses

MCT 100: Introduction to Modern Technology

Credits 2 Max Credits 5
This course is an introduction to technology studies, core mechatronics, and physical computing: the integration of electrical, mechanical, microcontrollers, computers, electronics, input/output, programmable logic controller (PLC), sensors and controls. This course will introduce students to the fundamentals of electrical, electronics, communications, firmware, software, sensors and computational theory, which form the foundation for future studies in mechatronics, simulations, robotics and industrial control systems through an introductory focus on microcontrollers, microcomputers and PLC software and devices. This is a variable credit course where students can choose to enroll in 2 to 5 credits depending on their needs.

MCT 101: Mechatronics I

Credits 2 Max Credits 5
This course is an introduction to the multidisciplinary field of mechatronics - the integration of systems design, electronic, mechanical, electrical, computers, PLC, and control sciences/ engineering. This course will introduce students to the fundamental electrical, electronics, communications, networks and computational theory that forms the foundation for future studies in the field of mechatronics. Students will build and demonstrate electronic projects using the Elegoo Uno R3 Project Kit. This is a variable credit course where students can choose to enroll in 2 to 5 credits depending on their needs.

MCT 102: Mechatronics II

Credits 2 Max Credits 5
This course is the second in the mechatronics series. It will address microcontroller programming, data acquisition, sensors, actuators, computer-aided design (CAD), automated manufacturing, and 3D printing. In this course, students will build (and keep) their own Creality Ender 3 Printer as well as design, print and build a variety of projects using open-source software and their own 3D printer. This is a variable credit course where students can choose to enroll in 2 to 5 credits depending on their needs.

MCT 103: Mechatronics III

Credits 5
This (third) course in mechatronics will address the use of microcontrollers and microprocessors functioning with sensors and control systems. Students learn how to use and interface with a variety of physical world sensors. Using this knowledge, students will build several sensor projects and demonstrate a UAS, Rover, or other device as part of a team project.

MCT 110: Introduction to Mechatronic Applications

Credits 3
An exploratory, hands-on course in mechatronics (the merger of mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, computer control and information technology), as related to the disciplines of computer science, medical simulation, and unmanned systems. This course addresses the skills required for effective career research and educational planning, as well as academic techniques for becoming a successful student in mechatronics related courses, certificates and majors

MCT 120: Robotics I

Credits 5
Students are introduced to the world of robotics, including the mechanisms, dynamics, control systems, sensors, vision, and basic programming and file management used in modern robotic systems. Students will build, program and test a robotic system as part of a group project.

MCT 129: Independent Project

Credits 2 Max Credits 5
MCT 129 is an independent study course allowing students to research, design and complete a mechatronics project incorporating the use of Global Position Systems (GPS) as a primary control component. Projects must be approved and supervised by a faculty member.

MCT 220: Robotics II

Credits 5
This second course in robotics addresses challenges and trends in the engineering, manufacturing, and programming of automated mechatronics systems. Students will build, program and test a robotic system using open-source technologies, as well as apply course activities to real-world applications.