Week two started on a very high note. We started with presentations to our faculty mentor, teaching assistants and the studio managers. It was a great point of learning as we got to understand that my team and I had jumped to finding a solution without thoroughly understanding and clarifying our assignment. This meant we had to go back to the drawing board. It was a “not-so-good” experience but I learnt that it is important not to jump steps in an engineering design process. The following days were full of brainstorming, meeting clinicians and coming up with more solutions to our problems. We also decided on a third project to be undertaken which was a suction tank monitor that was suggested to us by one of our teaching assistants Mr. Hope Chilunga.
We met a dentist from premier specialists, Mr. Noah Kidenga, who completely changed my perspective on the dental mouth opener. From the research I had done, I had pictured the whole process to be very complicated. However, after discussing over coffee, he took us to the clinic where he demonstrated how the mouth opener he uses worked. The following day, we met Mr. George Banda who explained more about the suction machine and how a monitor would really improve the rate at which the machines fail. He also showed us the graveyard where damaged machines lay and it was a saddening site.
We later visited Queen Elizabeth Central hospital where we met a nurse who explained to us the problems that they face in regards to the pulse oximeter and suction machine and also the improvements that could make their work easier and better.
The week ended with presentations on our new findings and the solutions we had come up with. There was really a great improvement in the way we had coordinated as a team to make it happen. I am really proud. I am looking forward to designing and prototyping.