March 15, 2019

By Chris Palangio & Stephen Speicher

On Tuesday, Feb. 19, 2019, the Manasquan High School InvenTeam hosted our mid-grant technical review in the high school media center. The room was arranged into 4 stations. At the main station, the team displayed a 250 lb. ballistic human dummy wearing firefighter turn out gear with a mock-up of our V-Sense Monitoring System’s placement within the turnout jacket. We also had an oversized Arduino-driven version of the project’s sensors and coding solution. The team’s presentation slides were shared on the large projection screen directly behind the main station. We also had an interactive “Coggle” mind-map on a smaller touch screen that allowed attendees to explore, at a high-level, our project’s Suppliers, Inputs, Processes, Output, & Customers (see the “Coggle of our SIPOC Brainstorming Session” blog for more details). It was a great tool that one of our technical mentors helped us create. It worked well to explain the broad outline of our project to the uninitiated. We asked visitors to comment and/or add details onto our Coggle that we might have missed– their comments were overwhelmingly positive. They did not find any deficits.

For the second station, we invited our partners, Computer Deconstruction Lab “The Jersey Shore Makerspace” from InfoAge Science History Learning Center [http://compdecon.org/] to set up a display table. They have graciously given us a makerspace to work out of every Monday night as well as technical mentors and support throughout our project. Their station included a visual history of computers and a hands-on activity to deconstruct older desktop computers. They seemed to enjoy speaking with everyone and spreading the word of their existence.

The third station showcased the power of 3D printing for prototyping. Chris Palangio, our Administrative Lead, along with other team member hosts, showcased our progress in 3D modeling the housing for our invention. They also shared their projection of what the future of 3D printing could include. The 3D printing booth showcased mechanical prints like gears and articulating prints as well as fun, large scale 3D printed superhero props and small knickknacks that all hobbyist start with.

Our fourth, and final, station was a joint dessert and survey table. We placed the surveys near the desserts to entice them to complete the surveys, of course! Our visitors were gracious enough to complete the InvenTeam survey forms that were printed out and set on these tables for them. We received insightful feedback from our attendees. We had in-depth conversations with representatives from 3 local volunteer fire departments: Brielle, Manasquan, & Spring Lake Heights. We also spoke with an elected Manasquan Fire Commissioner, an instructor from the Monmouth County Fire Academy, & the coordinator for our local Office of Emergency Management. We also had many family and friends eagerly asking questions and eating our home-cooked treats. Sample comments we received included, “As an active firefighter, I can see the need for self-protection above a PPE. The V-Sense Monitoring System is a great project and I can see it going a long way!” and “Firefighter situational awareness and command & control of firefighters’ vitals are critical to the future of firefighting. Great job!”. Some of the comments agreed with our decision to place the sensors inside the jacket instead of the glove, “placement of finger O2 monitor would decrease hand dexterity” and “placement in the gloves may hamper mobility”. Their responses were overwhelmingly positive, and we appreciate them taking the time out of their busy schedules to interact with us.

After speaking with our technical reviewers, we realized we also need to re-think our alarm system. We originally thought we could hook our system into the PASS alarm system already in use, however, they told us there are restrictions on this and we cannot link our system to the PASS Alarm. We are currently working to come up with an alternate alarm and where to locate it. Moving forward, our next steps are to miniaturize our sensor array and fine-tune our programming. Our goal is to get a custom PCB board produced. We must also finalize the system’s housing, method of attachment, and placement of the alarm and battery within the jacket.

Tim and Kyle are using the balistic dummy to explain our invention and the location of the pulse ox sensor to local technical advisors.

 

 

Matt, Harvey, and Madison prepping and setting up our Ardiuno display.