Title: Personal Ascender
Sponsor: Bobdawg LLC

The sponsor has developed a unique gasoline-powered capstan-winch based personal ascender for back-country ski access. The systems uses a small 2-stroke motor coupled with a gearbox and capstan to ascend a thin rope placed at a desired location. This back-pack mounted device can be stowed during the ski run, then easily affixed to a rope for a return to the top of a slope. The sponsor has utilized this system for the past several years and has optimized performance to a degree, but desires further enhancements, including weight reduction, re-design for ease of manufacturing, safety, simplicity, and cost reduction.

Two students began working on this project during Spring semester 2012, and will continue to refine their design and begin fabrication of components. It is desired to add one or two additional team members to help in design/build, and to engage in testing of the completed redesign.

The ideal team member would have an interest in manufacturing, materials, power transmission. Skiing experience - especially back-country A/T skiing - is strongly desired.