Mechanical Engineering Department
BS in Mechanical Engineering
James Widmann, Lily Laiho
A team of four senior-level undergraduate students in the Interdisciplinary Senior Project Design course in the Engineering Department of California Polytechnic State University: San Luis Obispo have worked to develop a prosthetic socket cooling system, namely for veteran Taylor Morris and exclusively for a transfemoral prosthetic socket, under the Quality of Life+ Laboratory. This cooling system will utilize the thermoelectric effect known as the Peltier effect to transmit heat generated from the residual limb to the surrounding environment by means of forced convection over small aluminum heat sinks. Two measurement devices have also been developed to, one, measure the heat generated by the muscles of the femoral area by a thermocouple temperature sensor network and, two, measure the efficiency of the proposed socket cooling system by applying a pseudo heat source and ensuring that the Peltier modules are removing the excess heat generated to hold and regulate the residual limb skin temperature.