Cutting Edge - State-of-the-art software propels School of Mechanical Engineering

A $2.9 million software licensing agreement between Purdue University and CyberMetrix is a boon for the School of Mechanical Engineering students and faculty. This initiative promises to provide both educational and research benefits for years to come.

CyberMetrix’s CyFlex Test System is utilized by Cummins Inc. in its diesel engine development and emissions testing and certification work. 

“Purdue’s use of CyFlex will result in graduates providing an immediate contribution to hiring companies, thereby giving Purdue graduates an advantage over those entering the workforce without any real-world training or knowledge,” noted Christine Mulholland, chairman and chief executive officer of  CyberMetrix Inc., based in Columbus, Indiana.

The agreement, approved in early June, entitles Purdue to a CyFlex license for the lifetime of the Ray W. Herrick Laboratories, enabling Purdue students and faculty to use the run-time software on engine test cells and other labs with the goal of developing device drivers and other software enhancements in collaboration with CyberMetrix.

“CyFlex is a user-friendly test and measurement software that works with third-party industry components and equipment,” Mulholland said. “It is highly configurable to accommodate many types of applications, making it ideal for a research lab.”

Greg Shaver, associate professor of mechanical engineering, is doing research at Herrick Laboratories on the modeling, design, and control of advanced power trains, and he believes this partnership will have a huge impact.

“The software’s cutting-edge technology provides automation and data-logging for advanced power trains,” Shaver said. “This results in more high-quality data that can be applied throughout the research process. Also, because the software’s approach is modular and accurate, this is a major positive step forward in terms of functionality compared to what we have been using.”

The gift from CyberMetrix comes at an important time for the School of Mechanical Engineering as the current facilities within Herrick Laboratories, such as an advanced engine test area, are being replaced and expanded. Cummins Inc. provided $1 million toward the building project in support of engine research and connected Purdue with CyberMetrix. 

“We are closely associated with Cummins and that relationship led to our becoming involved with this project,” said Dan Oren, chief engineer of advanced test technology for CyberMetrix and a Purdue alumnus. “The opportunity to work with Purdue students and professors is very exciting for us.”