Starting in October 2011, a team of 9 students from our MPD program signed up for the 2012 Delphi Innovation Competition. The competition was related to the wireless charging of electric vehicles, and faced the team with the challenge of developing a reliable, accurate, and cost-effective system capable of aligning a car over a very specific point while parking. With funding provided by Delphi, the team, led by student Oscar Frias and advised by Professor Stuart Evans, applied CMU’s interdisciplinary and user-centric focus to research, prototype, and develop a very reliable system that provided the drivers with accurate information and instructions to park properly. It was such reliability, usability, and user-centric approach that took the team to the finalists round in April. There, the team presented and demonstrated their project to Delphi’s management who proudly awarded the team with first prize.
The overall experience of this self-organized extracurricular project helped the team to apply the knowledge and techniques acquired during the MPD program, as well as to receive great advice from CMU’s extended network. It also put the team members under the spotlight for high level recruitment in Delphi, which will have team member Scott Fisher joining their lines as a Product Engineer starting this summer.