Conestoga news

May 13, 2013 1:49 PM

Students display top projects

For Brock Dannecker, a fully automated house isn't just something you see in a futuristic movie. His vision for just such a house was on display in the atrium of Conestoga's Engineering and Information Technology campus during the Technology@Work event held on Tuesday, April 30.

Students from various programs joined Dannecker to display year-end and capstone projects at the Tech@Work event. Selected as one of the top projects from the Electrical Engineering Technology program, the home automation system was a popular project throughout the afternoon.

Dannecker said his group wanted to build something that would benefit the average consumer and the environment.

"Right now you can go out and spend $80,000 on an alternative energy system, but you don't have a good idea if you're getting the money back," he said. "So what we are doing is we are providing a system that gives you real-time data on the money you're saving."

Dannecker also said that his team hopes to have the opportunity to lower the cost of the system by using consumer grade components rather than industrial grade components.

"By moving to consumer grade components, we hope to bring the cost down from $50,000 to around $10,000."

While students were given a modest budget for their projects, Dannecker said his team benefitted from the support of multiple sponsors for most of their equipment. He also credited working on this project and the overall program at Conestoga with helping him find employment.

"I recently graduated from the program and I am starting full-time work at a local employer," he said. "The great thing about our program is that it has given me the experience of working in everything from a factory setting to developing alternative energy projects."

Along with the home automation project, a variety of other projects were on display including an automated food sorting system, an architectural model and a hand-built office desk.

For additional footage from the event, view the video below: