Featured Graduate Student: Dalton Stein, URI

OCTOBER 31 2021 | Dalton Stein, a Master’s student in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Rhode Island, worked on a NUWC-sponsored capstone project during his senior year at URI as an undergraduate. It was while working on this project that Stein learned about the partnership NIUVT poses between the Navy and URI.

Stein became intrigued with NIUVT research because of the opportunity to apply the research towards solving relevant, real-world problems. “The collaboration between industry professionals and academics from both UConn and URI creates a strong networking opportunity for the students who work on them,” said Stein.

Stein’s NIUVT research project focuses on structural health monitoring for mechanical systems. “The project predominantly focuses on the development and implementation of multivariate data analysis algorithms that could be applied to identify faults, fatigue life, and damage in mechanical systems,” explained Stein. “The algorithms and methodology are first validated on numerical models before a thorough experimental investigation is performed to study the effectiveness in real-world situations.”

Stein enjoys the multidisciplinary nature of his project the most. “It allows me to sample courses outside of the Mechanical Engineering Department at URI and apply concepts and techniques from different fields towards the problem I was working on,” stated Stein. “As a result, I have acquired proficiency in subject areas that I would not have obtained if I was constrained to a purely mechanical problem.”

After graduating, Stein is hoping to still be heavily involved in research. “There are a lot of exciting developments happening in the aerospace and structural dynamics communities currently,” said Stein. “It would be interesting to be a part of it, whether it be an academic or industrial setting.”