POINT – Undergraduate Physics Organization for Innovation and Technology

POINT (Physics Organization for Innovation and Technology)

Undergraduate Group for Innovation

Meetings: Mondays at 5:30pm in Broida 3340
Officers: Casey Borden, Shaoqui Chen, David Gong.
We will be having elections in Winter Quarter 2022 to determine the board for the upcoming school year.
Currently, we are working on a variety of projects for the Physics department. With supervision by Zac Espley and Raffi Shirinian, we are working on the following concepts:
  • PSR Noise Detection System: We plan to develop a noise detection system for the PSR to monitor noise levels while students are working. This systems involves developing several noise thresholds based on existing noise levels in the room, then programming the sensors to detect the noise level. If it should pass the threshold, we will be developing code to display a warning that the noise level needs to be lowered.
  • Bottle Holders: In the makerspace, there are several different bottles of isopropyl alcohol that are sitting on the workstations. We are using NX to CAD up some holders which can be attached to the pre-existing shelving; these will help store the bottles out of harm’s way.
  • LED Housings: We are modeling housings for Physics 3L labs and re-soldering components which are breaking. These housings are being constructed to prevent further damage to the LED. We are using CAD to model these and then will design them in a clear acrylic.
  • 3D Calipers: We are designing a set of 3D printed calipers that can be attached to a standard yard or meter stick. These will be used for undergraduate labs. The calipers are being designed in CAD and then will be printed out in the makerspace.
We are adding new projects all the time, and there’s something for everyone!
No experience is required to join this club. You’ll learn skills such as CAD (Computer Aided Design), , FEA (Multi-Physics Finite Element Analysis), CAM (Computer Aided Machining), electronics, programming, and prototyping.
We have general group meetings every Monday night, and each subteam meets on their own. This club supports research labs in the department, as well as student labs. If you’re looking to get hands on experience with programming, CAD, or electronics, this club offers projects to learn more about the topics!
Useful contacts for our group: 
Casey Borden: cborden@ucsb.edu
Shaoqiu Chen: shaoqiu@ucsb.edu
David Gong: davidgong@ucsb.edu




UCSB Site license for Siemens NX  high end CAD/CAM/FEA Code:

UCSB enrolled undergrads can use a very high end software package (Siemens NX) for Computer Aided Design (CAD) along with Computer Aided Machining (CAM) and Finite Element Analysis (FEA). Modern design uses sophisticated numerical analysis to for rapid design and structural, thermal and other multi physics analysis as well as to run computer controlled machines for both additive and subtractive machining. All of the computers in the PSR and in 5223 have Siemens NX installed. Students can also install it on their laptops but will have to check out licenses when on campus. It can only be run on campus and CANNOT be used for ANY commercial applications. This is NOT a student program but is the same program used by Boeing, NGC, ATK, Space X, Tesla, NASA and many other high end users. It is NOT a toy program. Mastery of this type of software is highly sought after in research labs, industry and national labs. 

UCSB Access to Siemens NX Install (must have valid ucsb.edu email):


Some useful links:

UCSB VPN:  www.ets.ucsb.edu/services/campus-vpn


Free student licenses for electronics and mechanical design:


Altium Student License (Free while student, needs renewal every 6 months):
Youtube Video Series introducing Altium 20 (I have spoken with the creator of this video series and he has offered to help teach students in any way we need):
Cadence OrCAD Free Student License (OrCAD is the lighter version of their professional tool Allegro, however they are similar enough that learning one will translate pretty well to the other):
Cadence Orcad Youtube Tutorial Series (same creator/instructor as Altium tutorial):
Siemens NX (CAD/FEA/CAM) Free Student License (if you use the full NX license

POINT grew out of a special topics class first taught in Spring and Fall of 2019.

See the class website for links related to CAD/CAM/FEA and modern design, analysis and rapid prototyping:


Former Officers:

2019-2022 Davis Thuillier (President), Anna Pedersen (Vice President), Jacob Litvin (Treasurer)
2022-2023  Anthony Lu, Anmol Kapoor