Crystal Structure Visualization

An animation of a crystal structure demonstration being assembled and disassembled using balls and spacers.
Students learning the crystal structures of solid metals can find it difficult to create a mental model of a three-dimensional arrangement of atoms when looking at a 2 dimensional image from a textbook or web page. This three dimensional model of the atoms helps enrich the learning process by creating an opportunity for students to hold and inspect the model to gain deeper understanding.
James McGuffin Cawley,

3D Printed Protein

Two models of a protein printed in blue plastic. One is curled up and knotted. The other is long and straight.
This 3D printed model of a protein recently solved by researchers is a visual aid for science communication and for more deeply understanding the way that the protein folds onto itself. This structure is the aggregated protein filament of TDP-43, which is related to neurodegenerative diseases like Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). In patients, soluble proteins aggregate and form filaments like these which can cause neurotoxicity. Solving the structure can help researchers understand the disease mechanism and design related therapies.
Qiuye Li,

Educational Smart Lamp

A lamp with a green light and a touchscreen display sits on a table in front of a computer.
Engineering faculty Nick Barendt designed this wi-fi enabled desk lamp for use in his “Introduction to Connect Devices” course for both Case Western Reserve University and Cleveland State University students.  In the class, students will write code to control the lamp while learning about the platforms, architecture, and security behind "smart" devices. The custom 3D printed enclosure contains commonly available electronic components. Nick Barendt is also the Executive Director of the Institute for Smart, Secure, and Connected Systems (ISSACS).
Nick Barendt,

Classroom Model Molecule

A silver 3D printed molecule sits on a tabletop.
This 3D printed model of a titanium dioxide nanoparticle will be used to give students hands-on experiences with molecules in the classroom. Postdoctoral researcher Shane Parker chose this particular molecule as a prototype because his work studies that material. Students will construct and print their own 3D models of molecules as a learning enrichment activity.
Shane Parker,

Skin on Frame Kayak

A handmade skin on frame kayak is piloted down the Cuyahoga River by creator Umit Erol.
This kayak is the second prototype in a series of short and lightweight recreational kayaks. The hull was designed in SolidWorks and optimized using design study tools and further modified for manufacturing using skin on frame construction - a lightweight and affordable construction method. The finished kayak was tested throughout the summer of 2020 to validate the performance and refine the design for the next model in the series.
Umit Erol,

Jan the Backpack

Jan the Backpack, an electronic puppet, sits on a couch next to creator Ian Charnas.
Sears think[box] staff member Ian Charnas recreated the talking bookbag character from the popular Netflix comedy, The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. This animatronic backpack was placed in a park where it was remote controlled by a comedian as it interacted with passersby. Afterward, the backpack was raffled off to support a non-profit working to fight human trafficking.
Ian Charnas,
Jessica Sheeran

Putt Boss

A putt boss holds a golf ball on a green field.
The Putt Boss allows golfers to practice controlling the speed of their putts on any surface by inverting the role. Rubberized bristles catch the ball and replicate the resistance of a real putting green. Hitting the red pin lets the player know they made a perfect putt.
Pete Rimback,

Watering Tower

an illuminated water tower made from stainless steel above a poem inscribed on the pavement
Stephen Manka produced Watering Tower as part of the Northeast Ohio Sewer District’s (NEOSD) green infrastructure project. Nine of these projects are underway throughout Cleveland to raise awareness regarding the Lake Erie watershed. Located in the Buckeye Woodhill neighborhood, programmable LED lights illuminate the stainless steel structure and an inscribed poem by Damien Ware.

White Label Face Shields

A person wearing gloves is demonstrating the proper use of a face shield.
In response to PPE shortages during COVID-19, think[box] engineers worked with engineers at Penn State University and Nottingham Spirk to set up an emergency face shield manufacturing line. This product was initially based on a popular open-source design, but was heavily modified for manufacturing through large-scale processes like injection molding and die cutting. These parts are more easily sterilized than their 3D printed counterparts. Over 150,000 face shields were sold at cost to hospitals in need, and the designs are freely available on the project website.
Ian Charnas,
Jason Williams,

Vertical Axis Wind Turbine Prototypes

Two 3D printed turbine models are lying on a desktop.
These scale model wind turbines use fixed-pitch blades to evaluate a new vertical axis wind turbine design. Vertical axis wind turbines are easier to install than traditional horizontal axis wind turbines and use low-speed blades that are less of a risk to people and birds, although they are typically less efficient. These physical models were used to validate the efficiency of new designs.
Theodore Radisek P.E.,