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Our Projects

Our Projects

View the links below to learn more about each of our current projects:

Water

The Better Pumps project is serving those seeking to maintain reliable water infrastructure for everyone. Many people throughout the world still lack access to clean water. The many thousands of manual water pumps installed in developing countries are failing due to flaws in the mechanical design. The Better Pumps team is investigating ways to improve the Afridev and India Mark 2 manual water pumps, the most common pumps installed by NGOs.

 

Project Manager: David Vader

Email: dvader@messiah.edu

Collab Biomedical

The Cunningham Clubfoot Brace team is working to adapt a novel clubfoot brace to reduce production costs through locally sustainable designs and 3D printing. The Cunningham brace utilizes a unilateral helix, which offers a more comfortable, dynamic alternative to the standard clubfoot brace treatment known as “boots and bar.” The team is partnering with HopeWalks and Jerald Cunningham, to use biomedical engineering principles to validate the efficacy of the brace.

 

Project Manager: Tim Howell

Email: thowell@messiah.edu

Collab Biomedical

The Diagnostics for Viral Diseases Project is partnered with Dr. Phil Thuma at the Macha Research Trust located in Macha, Zambia in order to create a novel diagnostic method for HIV. This method is being designed specifically for the clinicians in the hospital to have a sustainable, low-cost diagnostic tool that provides information on whether or not to change antiretroviral treatments for patients with HIV.

 

Project Manager: Emily Farrar

Email: efarrar@messiah.edu

Partnering with the Brethren in Christ Church in Zambia, the Egg Incubator team is seeking to serve the church by helping increase food security and provide a sustainable supplemental income source. The Nahumba Mission in Choma, Zambia has about 150 chickens that produce a steady supply of fertilized eggs, but few incubators are available. The goal is to design a high-quality, low-cost device that local pastors can use to hatch chicks to sell.

                                                                                                                    Project Manager: Philip Tan

Email: ptan@messiah.edu

Collab energy small

The Energy Monitoring and Management System team provides meters for monitoring energy use, particularly for people with limited supplies of energy. These meters can limit power use to prevent outages while educating users about their energy use habits with the ultimate goal of making electrical power more available to energy impoverished regions of the world. This team is partnering with Open Door Development, Theological College of Zimbabwe and IEEE Smart Village

 

Project Manager: Tom Austin

Email: tom@austinlight.com

Collab

Missionary aviation pilots often have to land their planes on remote airstrips that might be unsafe due to runway obstructions such as encroaching vegetation. The Falcon Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) team is partnering with ITEC to develop an imaging system using a UAV to scan these airstrips to detect these obstructions. ITEC was founded by Steve Saint, the son of martyred missionary Nate Saint, to develop technologies to aid missionaries in their work.

 

Project Manager: Dereck Plante

Email: dplante@messiah.edu

Collab Communications Technology

The Fluency Assistive Device project is supporting and improving an electronic device that greatly aids persons with fluency disorders by masking auditory feedback for the user. This team is supporting local technician, David Germeyer.

 

Project Manager: Harold Underwood

Email: hunderw@messiah.edu

Water

This project partners with Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) and the local Catholic diocese in Sipacapa, Guatemala to design a gravity fed water distribution system that will serve the village to provide safe, potable water. The implementation of this system will aid in improving the health and livelihood of the community as well as empower the people toward social and economic growth. 

 

Project Manager: Thomas Soerens

Email: tsoerens@messiah.edu

This team is working with HALO Trust to design a product that will be used by Halo workers in the field to neutralize landmines, IEDs, and other unexploded ordnances (UXO). The goal is to provide a more reliable and stable method of neutralization for workers and to restore livelihoods for communities affected by war.

 

Project Manager: Don Pratt

Email: dpratt@messiah.edu

Water

The Intelligent Water Project will improve access to clean water in rural African communities through a partnership with World Vision and AlignedWorks by increasing hand pump performance and reliability, while also reducing the resources needed for repair. This is achieved through a remote monitoring system installed on the community hand pump which utilizes sensors, an embedded microprocessor and mobile phone, and cloud technology to create a comprehensive, real-time database providing information on pump use and needed maintenance.

 

Project Manager: Randy Fish

Email: rfish@messiah.edu

Collab Infrastructure

This team is working on land development for Tree 4 Hope’s children’s home facility in El Aguacate, Guatemala.  The current scope includes design and construction plans for grading and drainage for a soccer field and additional parking.

Project Manager: Scott Heisey

Email: heisey@messiah.edu

This team is working with HALO Trust to design an “Air Excavation Unit” which is a specialized tool used to excavate areas around landmines, IEDs and explosives in the safest and most reliable way possible.   

 

 

Project Manager: Donald Pratt

Email: dpratt@messiah.edu

Collab Advancement
The marketing team uses social media, graphic design, writing, and film to promote the Collaboratory and provide updates about the organization.

 

Project Manager: Alyssa Heberlig

Email: aheberlig@messiah.edu

Water

The Mechanized Percussion Well Drilling Project seeks to design a simple mechanized well drilling system to be used for drilling shallow water wells in Burkina Faso, Africa. These systems will be operated by local businesses, allowing them to earn an income for themselves and their families. Currently, our client, SIM, has trouble drilling through hard rock layers and often must abandon holes due to inadequate equipment. The goal of this project is to enable the clients to efficiently drill through these rock layers with a mechanized percussion rig and supporting drilling equipment.

 

                                                                                                                    Project Manager: Phillip Tan

Collab Biomedical

The goal of the Muscle Activated Prosthesis team is to provide a myoelectric-controlled prosthetic that costs under $1000. We will combine 3D printed and electrical components to create the movement of a prosthetic hand for the client, a trans-radial amputee. The team will also explore the feasibility of designing a prosthetic hand that can be customized and delivered by the local prosthetics clinic at CURE International, Kijabe, Kenya.  This team is partnering with Ability Prosthetics and Orthotics and CURE International.

 

Project Manager: Tim Howell

Email: thowell@messiah.edu

Collab Disability

This team is partnered with International Nepal Fellowship (INF), a Christian, medical organization that manages a hospital in Pokhara, Nepal and specializes in patients with spinal cord injuries. For these patients, a prone cart is used to allow them to regain mobility and accelerate recovery. With a prone cart, the patient lies face down and uses their arms to propel the cart. The Prone Cart Team aims to provide INF with a practical design that can be locally manufactured.

 

Project Manager: Tim Van Dyke

Email: tvandyke@messiah.edu

Collab

Persons with disabilities in developing countries often lack the basic equipment needed to assist them in their daily lives. International Nepal Fellowship (INF) is a Christian medical organization in Nepal providing assistance to people with disabilities and other conditions. INF has expressed a desire for a wheelchair that is designed specifically for the challenges of Nepal and would be able to be made from local materials.

 

Project Manager: Tim Van Dyke

Email: tvandyke@messiah.edu

Collab Infrastructure

This team will design and install a pedestrian bridge for a rural community in Panama. This bridge will give the community better access to things like health care, markets, and schools during the rainy season. The team will be partnering with Rio Missions

 

Project Manager: Brian Swartz

Email: bswartz@messiah.edu

 

Collab energy small

The Pico-Hydro Energy project (PHEP) focuses on providing affordable electric power for off-grid communities in developing countries. The work that PHEP is doing involves the design, optimization, and experimental testing of small hydroelectric generators provided by the project partner Engineering Ministries International (EMI).

 

Project Manager: Robert Hentz

 

Collab Biomedical

In Mahadaga, Burkina Faso, the Centre for the Advancement of the Handicapped was once able to create full prosthetic legs. The Centre accepted prosthetic knees from a donor and made the rest of the leg with their own resources; however, they have exhausted the supply of donated knees and are no longer able to assist leg amputees. This team aims to design a simpler prosthetic knee that can be manufactured in Mahadaga and is compatible with the rest of the prosthetic leg that the Centre has been using. CURE Kenya has been added as an additional client, specifically because of the price point and the ability to fabricate the knee on site. This would open` up an additional option for patients who would otherwise not be able to afford a prosthetic.

 

Project Manager: Jamie Williams

Email: jwilliams@messiah.edu

Collab Biomedical

The Rapid Orthotics for CURE Kenya (ROCK) team is partnering with Cure International’s hospital in Kijabe, Kenya to implement and maintain a 3D printing system for the manufacturing of orthotic braces and prosthetic sockets. This project is unique in its desire to empower the local orthotist technicians in Kenya to become designers and manufacturers of their own orthotics.

                                                                                                     

         Project Manager: Jamie Williams

Email: jwilliams@messiah.edu

Collab Biomedical

Patients who wear prosthetics in low-resource settings have difficulty sanitizing the interface between their residual limb and a prosthetic device because of lack of access to clean water, which can lead to infection. This team will investigate solutions to mitigate skin breakdown such as embedding anti-bacterial silver particles in the silicone, investigating different detergents, and developing minimum hygiene protocol requirements. This team is partnering with CURE International.

 

Project Manager: Emily Farrar

Email: efarrar@messiah.edu

Collab Energy

The Solar PV team will be designing a system for Tree 4 Hope's children’s home and school in Guatemala as well as working with Villages in Partnership in Malawi to explore potential future projects.

 

Project Manager: Randy Fish

Email: rfish@messiah.edu

Collab Sustainability

Affordable access to food is a global issue. The sustainable agriculture team is addressing this problem by growing food via aquaponics. Aquaponics is a soil-free farming method that requires shorter growing periods and up to 90% less water than traditional agriculture. The team is working with Sheltering Wings (SW) to troubleshoot and redesign the currently installed aquaponics system in Yako, Burkina Faso. By modifying the aquaponics system, the team hopes to assist Sheltering Wings in producing a successful harvest.

 

Project Manager: Michelle Lockwood

Email: mlockwood@messiah.edu

Collab Disability Resources

The Sustainable Mobility project partners with the Center of Hope in Burkina Faso to provide hand-powered and electric tricycles as a means of personal transportation for those with limited mobility. Short-term, the goals are to maximize the cost-effectiveness and manufacturability of the current design and to equip a local fabricator in Burkina Faso to sustainably produce and distribute tricycles. Long-term, the goal is to develop a turn-key business model that puts local fabricators to work. 

 

Project Manager: David Vader

Email: dvader@messiah.edu

Collab

The team is working with Trans World Radio (TWR) to improve year-round access at their West African Transmitter Station in Benin. Currently, roadway access to the facility is hampered by flooding during the rainy season. The team is working on design and construction plans for a culvert or similar bridge structure to mitigate access problems at the station.

 

Project Manager: Scott Heisey 

Email: heisey@messiah.edu

Water

Since 2008, Village Water Ozonation Systems (VWOS) team has aimed to provide communities with the cleanest water they can sustainably afford by designing and installing water treatment systems to meet local needs as part of the global effort to increase access to safe and affordable drinking water. The team is excited to partner again with Forward Edge International to continue providing affordable drinking water in Oaxaca, Mexico and with Friends in Action in Nicaragua. 

 

Project Manager: Michelle Lockwood

Email: mlockwood@messiah.edu

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