This last semester I took a product development class. The first week of class, we were divided into design teams and given the task to design an improved model of a Hitachi impact driver such that it would fill some unmet market needs.
My design team decided to create a new cordless hand power tool capable of drilling holes, driving screws, and hammering nails, all with a single device. The operating function is changed simply by changing from a drill or screw bit to a specially designed hammer bit. After creating our design, we had to manufacture a functional prototype, which actually works surprisingly well!
The technology we developed is pretty cool (if I do say so myself ). It changes from a rotational motion to a back-and-forth hammering impact just by changing the bit. The Technology Transfer Office at BYU has started the process of filing for a provisional patent and then they will present our design to manufacturers. If any of them bite, we’ll work out a licensing deal for them to lease our technology.
It has been a really fun project to work on! I learned a lot, and am really excited and happy about our results!