Around campus

The MIT Museum, course 2.009, and commencement

MechE at the Museum

Linder Exhibit Photo
Exploring the Arctic Seafloor

Photographs by Chris Linder
Through June 7, 2010
Compton Gallery, 77 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge

A new MIT Museum exhibition Exploring the Arctic Seafloor chronicles the 2007 voyage of the icebreaker Oden, a historic Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) expedition launched in the International Polar Year. MIT/WHOI Joint Program alumni Dr. Hanumant Singh PhD ‘95, co-leader of the expedition, and photographer Chris Linder SM ‘96 joined a team of scientists, researchers, and photographers for a 40-day journey to study the 1,800 kilometer-long Gakkel Ridge. Linder created the exhibition in collaboration with Chicago’s Field Museum and graphics experts at WHOI.

HolopodThe Holopod Camera
Installation by Professor George Barbastathis and Cabell Davis
MIT Museum, 265 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge

In this interactive exhibit, visitors experiment with a modified version of the state-of-the-art Holopod camera, an innovative oceanographic instrument used to study the tiny life cycles of zooplankton. The imaging system was jointly created by Mechanical Engineering Associate Professor George Barbastathis, graduate students Nick Loomis and Jose Dominguez-Caballero, and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution scientists.

Learn more about these exhibitions at

2.009 course highlights

Teams of seniors in David Wallace’s 2.009 course pooled their engineering talent and creativity last fall to construct prototype inventions that addressed the theme of “emergency.” Final products were graded on ingenuity, performance, and the sustainability of the business plan. The class culminated in an evening of presentations when teams marketed their inventions to fellow students, product designers, entrepreneurs, and alumni. Emergency innovations included:

AquAirius Image
AquAirius—An adjustable buoyancy backboard for rescuing injured swimmers. The design is easier to maneuver than the classic backboard and allows for greater neck stabilization during rescues.

ixawalker image

Ixa Walker—A stable and maneuverable walker engineered to help users rise from a seated position to an upright walking position. The lightweight device incorporates a custom-designed hinge that assists the transition from sitting to standing.

isis helmet image
Isis Helmet—A cycling helmet capable of detecting severe crashes. When the helmet senses a significant impact and the rider is unable to signal wellbeing, the device initiates a rescue by sending an emergency message to 911.

Find information and videos of the final presentations at

Join us in the tent

The Department of Mechanical Engineering will host a reception immediately following commencement on Friday, June 4, 2010. We hope you’ll join us as we celebrate our graduates, reconnect with friends, and showcase our latest research. The MechE tent will be located on Memorial Drive in front of Hayden Memorial Library. See you there!