Caden Ohlwiler ’15

Major

Mechanical Engineering

Project Title

What Trees Could Learn from Alan Greenspan

Current research efforts in Princeton’s ecohydrology lab include studying how trees respond to drought and conducting low-cost environmental monitoring. This summer, I worked on two projects: Designing both a leaf chamber and attachments for the Princeton University Low-Cost Sensors for the Environment (PULSE) sensor project. For the leaf chamber project, I met with a plant researcher at Princeton who advised me on the design and construction of a chamber and provided me with design files for his chamber. I designed a chamber and compiled a parts list. I plan to begin construction of this chamber this fall to study the photosynthetic response of leaves under simulated drought conditions. For the PULSE project, I designed and prototyped attachments for a sensor pod currently being developed in the lab which will provide a low-cost, modular sensor platform suitable for real-time environmental and agricultural monitoring in developing countries. These attachments include connectors for a variety of sensors, an adjustable solar panel mount, and zip-tie attachments for the pod. By using the lab’s 3D printer, I was able to move quickly from a conceptual design to a physical part, and iteratively redesign parts based on real-world testing and feedback from my advisor. This internship furthered my interest in product design and rapid prototyping, a field I am seriously considering for my career.



Internship Year

2013

Project Category

Climate and Energy

Organization(s)

Princeton Ecohydrology Lab, Princeton, NJ

Mentor(s)

Adam Wolf, Postdoctoral Research Associate, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology