My first week at my LINK internship was great! On Monday my mentor Melissa gave me my project outline and I was able to get started. I am engineering a thermoelectric temperature conditioning advice. During the week I completed the necessary research needed and ran tests on the peltier device I will be using. I attended the weekly staff meeting on Monday where they discussed the logistics of the NASA test they will be performing next month. I also had the opportunity to shadow Mesa, one of the engineers at AMPT. I helped him clean and put together some of the parts they will be using during the NASA test. I also helped Mesa make a few adjustments to the test chamber and scrape the ice off of the liquid nitrogen tank.
This week I did extensive research on thermoelectrics and peltiers. Peltiers are made of P and N type semiconductors between two plates. When voltage is applied to it, one side absorbs heat and gets cold, while the other side releases the heat and gets hot. I spent a day testing the peltier at different voltages and was able to get the hot side up to 360 degrees with a temperature difference of 69 degrees between the hot and cold sides. I worked with John, another one of the engineers a lot this week. He has been very helpful with my project this week. I have a wiring diagram drawn for the prototype and next week I will be making a bill of materials and designing the prototype. I have a $200 budget to get any materials I will need for my prototype.
I have several goals for the upcoming week. I would like to have a functional block diagram of my temperature conditioner drawn, a circuit diagram drawn, and start the design process for my prototype. I would also like to be more sociable. I am very shy, so talking to new people is a challenge. I have been pushing myself out of my comfort zone so that I can make a good impression, but it has been challenging.
I have had several successes this week. I have completed all the milestones in my project that were required and successfully shadowed one of the engineers and helped him with his work. The only challenges I faced came from being shy. But everyone at AMPT is very nice so I have gradually become less socially awkward around everyone. :)