Purdue University Calumet’s School of Technology and more than a dozen packaging machinery manufacturers have partnered to develop a campus-based mechatronics laboratory equipped with $200,000 in the type of high speed, complex machinery used in the packaging industry.
The lab, introduced at Purdue Calumet’s recent Technology Day, is designed to provide hands-on experiential learning opportunities in electrical and mechanical areas of designing, installing and troubleshooting equipment that produces and packages various items consumers purchase daily.
With industry leaders touting to university officials the need for trained technologists to operate the complex equipment that drives the $6 billion packaging industry, Purdue Calumet introduced a program last fall that focuses on the emerging field of mechatronics engineering technology. The program combines mechanical design and electrical control.
“Within this new mechatronics lab, our students will learn advanced programming techniques, interfacing automated equipment, sensor design, machine design and troubleshooting,” Purdue Calumet Dean of the School of Technology Niaz Latif said. “Students will become prepared to design, install and troubleshoot this type of equipment, making them especially valuable to employers.”
Companies supporting development of the lab are: Intralox, Eaton, Mitsubishi Electric Automation, Hoffman, Schneider Electric, ELAU, Fox IV Technologies, Fastec Imaging, Morrison Container Handling Solutions, Dorner Manufacturing, Balluff, Shuttleworth, Bimba Manufacturing, Aeromet Industries and the Packaging Machinery Manufacturers Institute.