University of Florida

ABE 4043C
Biological Engineering Design 2

Semester Taught - Spring

Catalog Description

Credits: 2

Senior capstone design project


Prereq: senior standing (4EG), ABE 4042C, specialization courses

Course Objectives

The goal of the course is to train students to apply the engineering design process by comprehensive hands-on experience. Students who complete the course will demonstrate the ability to:

  • Design and conduct experiments, as well as analyze and interpret data
  • Design a system, component, or process to meet desired needs
  • Understand professional and ethical responsibilities
  • Communicate effectively
  • Recognize the need for, and engage in life long learning
  • Use the techniques, skills, and modern engineering tools necessary for engineering practice

Contributions of Course to Meeting the Professional Component for ABET

This required course counts for 2 credit hours of "Engineering Design" towards completion of the 55 hour “Professional Requirements” of the undergraduate curricula for all options of the BS.

Relationship of Course to Program Outcomes

From the list of (a) through (k) program outcomes listed below, this course addresses the following (a), (c), (d), (e), (h), and (k).

ABET Program Outcomes

  • (a) Apply knowledge of mathematics, science, and engineering
  • (b) Design and conduct experiments, as well as analyze and interpret data
  • (c) Design a system, component, or process to meet desired needs
  • (d) Function on multi-disciplinary teams
  • (e) Identify, formulate, and solve engineering problems
  • (f) Understand professional and ethical responsibilities
  • (g) Communicate effectively
  • (h) Understand the impact of engineering solutions in a global and societal context
  • (i) Recognize the need for, and engage in life long learning
  • (j) Understand contemporary engineering issues
  • (k) Use the techniques, skills, and modern engineering tools necessary for engineering practice


Eric McLamore
Office: 105 Rogers Hall
Phone: 392-1864 EXT 105

 Material/Supply Fees


Class Materials Required

No Textbook Required. Copies of all computer files associated with the project should be submitted electronically at the same time as the hard copies of the mid-term and final reports. Each student should have an account on the Agricultural and Biological Engineering Department network to be used in this course for sending and receiving e-mail, for storage of project documents and for accumulation of the student's portfolio. Other accounts are acceptable for e-mail and document storage if they are capable of transmitting all of the required information (e.g., gmail, yahoo mail, etc)..

Course Outline

Lecture Topic




-Design II Problem Statement and Semester Schedule disseminated to students in Design I

First week of Nov.


-Tentative topic for Design II project
-Begin speaking with your faculty mentor
-Choose team for Design II (color neutral)



-Signed form for special topics (must have faculty signature)
-300 word abstract for Design II project

Form No. ABE4042C-A1 due to Dr. McLamore by last day of classes in Fall semester

Intro to ABE 4042C

-Finalize team members
-Minimum of 4 students per team

First week of Spring semester

-Visualization of scientific information

-HW #1: Storyboarding and visualization

ABET: (f), (g), (k)

-Project Scheduling

-HW #2: Budget request and Project Schedule

ABET: (b), (f)

-Writing Goals and Objectives

-HW#3: Goals and Objectives

ABET: (b), (c), (f), (g)

-Background and Methods

-HW #4: Review of relevant literature

ABET: (c), (f), (g)

-Criteria vs Objectives

-HW#5: Engineering Standards

ABET: (c), (f)

-Results and Discussion

-HW#6: Methodology

ABET: (b), (c)

Executive Summary

-HW#7: Executive summary

ABET: (f), (g)


-MID TERM: Video abstracts
-Executive Summary

No new design ideas after Feb 28

Spring Break

Spring Break

Spring Break

-Potential Problems and Alternative Strategies

-HW#8: Preliminary data


-Modes of failure

-HW#9: Failure analysis

ABET: (i)

-Proofing and editing

-HW#10: Reverse outlining

ABET: (i)


Performance Demonstration





Advisory Board

Advisory Board Review Panel





Instructional Procedures

The focus of the course is a comprehensive student design project. The course provides the opportunity for students to work with an experienced engineer on a project. The student is responsible for transmitting reports to the project advisor and to the instructor. The students will explore solutions, select a candidate solution, execute the design, and, where feasible, build a prototype or model and test it. All results will be compares to established standards and previous designs in published (peer reviewed) literature. Projects will be evaluated based on quality of the design, the steps of the design procedure, and the written and oral presentation of the design concept. 

Important Forms
To the extent possible, cross-specialization will be planned, developed and executed for team projects. Students will define a project with the advice of the instructor or another faculty member/advisor in ABE. Teams working with a faculty mentor other than the course instructor must have a signed document (ABE Form No. ABE4042C-A1) identifying the faculty mentor. Students who are eligible may obtain credit for Design II by participating in a summer internship. Students must seek approval from Dr. Leary and Dr. McLamore and also fill out the appropriate forms (see ABE Form No. ABE4042C-A2 for a list of requirements).

Design I-Design II sequence
The Design I and Design II courses are complementary. Thus, it is important that student teams begin to work on design concepts in the Fall semester during enrollment in Design I. A formal written problem statement describing the semester project will be due the first week of class in Design II. 

Meeting and Attendance
Student teams will meet with the instructor each week for a short lecture (no longer than 30 minutes in most cases). Following this short lecture, teams will discuss progress, problems, and expectations related to the design projects. Attendance to all schedule classes is mandatory. Times and location of classes and presentations may be changed to accommodate student and faculty scheduling conflicts. Tardiness will not be accepted; tardiness of more than 5 minutes will be counted as an absence.

Design projects
The design project will be the design of a physical device or system. Computer-aided design is encouraged, but use of the computer and development of software are considered methodology rather than a true design. All designs must be developed and presented in a form such that a contractor could build it without additional input from the designer. There must be some evidence that the design will work as planned and, where feasible, prototypes are encouraged. A major consideration in any design is the cost of owning and operating the system or device and the benefits to be derived from it. Although the benefit may be conjectural, the designer must be able to project at least the cost of construction. The final report should address environmental impact, use of standards, safety, legal requirements (including permitting), and social and economic impacts as well as the expected technical considerations.

Written report:
A written (word-processed, hard and electronic copies) and proposal will be required. The formal proposal will include quantitative design criteria and a proposed project schedule, as well as other topics identified by the instructor during the first week of class (see Design Report Guideline).  A series of homeworks will introduce students to key concepts for successfully completing the Design challenge. Students should use feedback from these homeworks to modify and improve the sections of the report document. One-paragraph to one-page progress reports will be submitted to both the instructor (and project advisor if applicable) weekly via e-mail.

Oral presentations:
There will be two oral presentations by teams (attendance by all members is mandatory). Presentation #1) Project proposals will be formally presented in the form of a video abstract and executive summary before Spring Break. The audience for the mid-term presentation is ABE faculty and students. These semi-formal presentations will be business casual. Presentation #2) After modification and improvement, a formal presentation of the final design and conclusions will be given to an external advisory board. The advisory board consists of Deans from other Universities, CEOs and lead engineers in companies, and entrepreneurs related to Ag & Bio Engineering. Teams will provide a draft copy of the written final report during this presentation for the Board to review. Students will present video abstracts with executive summary, and then discuss the findings with the advisory board and ABE faculty.

Late submissions: All assignments are due by 5 pm on the day specified for full credit (20% deduction per day thereafter.

Use of cell phones or musical devices is not allowed during class or lab.


A C- will not be a qualifying grade for critical tracking courses.  In order to graduate, students must have an overall GPA and an upper-division GPA of 2.0 or better (C or better).  Note: a C- average is equivalent to a GPA of 1.67, and therefore, it does not satisfy this graduation requirement.  For more information on grades and grading policies, please visit:

Grading Scale
A 91-100%
B 81-90%
C 71-80%
D 61-70%
E <61%
Grading Method Points
Homework 50
Weekly Reports 50
Design Meetings/Attendance 25
Mid-Term Report 125
Final Written Report 125
Team Evaluations 25
Final Oral Report 100
Final Point Total 500


* No make-up assignments will be given and no late reports will be accepted without valid medical reasons or unless prior arrangements have been made. Late submissions will be given a grade of 0%

* Students must obtain approval from instructor for obtaining ABE 4042C credit for a design competition or special topics project


Academic Honesty

Academic Honesty

As a student at the University of Florida, you have committed yourself to uphold the Honor Code, which includes the following pledge: “We, the members of the University of Florida community, pledge to hold ourselves and our peers to the highest standards of honesty and integrity.”  You are expected to exhibit behavior consistent with this commitment to the UF academic community, and on all work submitted for credit at the University of Florida, the following pledge is either required or implied: "On my honor, I have neither given nor received unauthorized aid in doing this assignment." 
It is assumed that you will complete all work independently in each course unless the instructor provides explicit permission for you to collaborate on course tasks (e.g. assignments, papers, quizzes, exams). Furthermore, as part of your obligation to uphold the Honor Code, you should report any condition that facilitates academic misconduct to appropriate personnel. It is your individual responsibility to know and comply with all university policies and procedures regarding academic integrity and the Student Honor Code.  Violations of the Honor Code at the University of Florida will not be tolerated. Violations will be reported to the Dean of Students Office for consideration of disciplinary action. For more information regarding the Student Honor Code, please see:  

Accommodation for Students with Disabilities

The Disability Resource Center coordinates the needed accommodations of students with disabilities. This includes registering disabilities, recommending academic accommodations within the classroom, accessing special adaptive computer equipment, providing interpretation services and mediating faculty-student disability related issues.

0001 Reid Hall, 352-392-8565,  

Software Use

All faculty, staff and student of the University are required and expected to obey the laws and legal agreements governing software use. Failure to do so can lead to monetary damages and/or criminal penalties for the individual violator. Because such violations are also against University policies and rules, disciplinary action will be taken as appropriate. We, the members of the University of Florida community, pledge to uphold ourselves and our peers to the highest standards of honesty and integrity.

Campus Helping Resources

Students experiencing crises or personal problems that interfere with their general well-being are encouraged to utilize the university’s counseling resources. The Counseling & Wellness Center provides confidential counseling services at no cost for currently enrolled students. Resources are available on campus for students having personal problems or lacking clear career or academic goals, which interfere with their academic performance.

  • University Counseling & Wellness Center, 3190 Radio Road, 352-392-1575,

    Counseling Services
    Groups and Workshops
    Outreach and Consultation
    Self-Help Library
    Training Programs
    Community Provider Database

  • Career Resource Center, First Floor JWRU, 392-1601,