“I have the confidence to create my own technology now," Bottrell said. "I'm currently working on a curtain retraction system to wake me up in the morning. It's very cool to understand how the physical components interact with the programming in C++ and the Arduino board to create a system that controls a specific function. I can't wait to think of more useful technologies to create.”

The instructor and designer of the course is Interplanetary Initiative Lecturer Eric Stribling.

"This course is great for any student interested in developing technology, whether that's building cool gadgets at home or developing new space technologies in a corporate environment. You'll leave this class with both makerspace skills and a view towards how technology is actually developed in the real world,” Stribling said.

The designing and making courses are designed with teamwork and an interdisciplinary approach in mind. 

“I try to incorporate teamwork into my course because today’s technologies are so complex that no one single person understands all the different components. For example, the International Space Station required the contributions of engineers, doctors, lawyers, linguists and even artists working together across the globe. Those pieces of technology development — design thinking, hands-on making and teamwork — all come together in this course,” said Stribling.

Get connected

The designing and making courses are a part of the technological leadership majorminor and interdisciplinary studies (IDS) concentration offered by the Interplanetary Initiative. 

Interested students can look for IPI 241: Designing and Making for an Interplanetary Future in the fall and IPI 341: Designing and Making (3D Printing and Fabrication) in the spring. Students majoring in BS programs in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences can also earn science and society credit when they enroll in IPI 241 and IPI 341.

In addition, students who complete the designing and making courses are well-prepared to take advantage of the technologies made available in the Interplanetary Laboratory. For more information on working in the laboratory, please contact interplanetary@asu.edu.

Students with questions about these courses or adding the technological leadership major, minor or IDS concentration can email TechLeadership@asu.edu.

Sally Young

Senior Communications Specialist, Interplanetary Initiative