The Wyss Institute at Harvard is funding the design and production of a cell culture medium mixer, which will automate a series of laboratory steps to prepare a particular cell culture medium every two days. The Wyss Institute’s strategy is to automate this laboratory process to eliminate the repetitive and time consuming task from the biologist’s schedule. This machine has a wide market because it can be used for other laboratory applications for regularly storing, thawing, and/or mixing chemicals. We are assuming minimal human interaction with the machine, including that the combined sets of chemicals are measured accurately and in the appropriate storage location. Constraints include ensuring the system is within the provided maximum dimensions, reliable, and capable of effectively replacing the process performed by a biologist. Stakeholders include the Wyss Institute’s OrgansOnChips Project Team, the OrgansOnChips team’s sponsors, and our Senior Design Project Team. The OrgansOnChips Project Team is funding our design project and their expectations are a functional system capable of storing, retrieving, and mixing a test tube with a base solution.

The Team

Our team is an interdisciplinary team consisting of two electrical engineers and two mechanical engineers, as well as our advisors.

Dominick Andolino
Electrical Engineering
Evaluation Manager
Andre Joubert
Mechanical Engineering
Design Manager
James Lynch
Mechanical Engineering
Project Manager
Robert Reinold
Electrical Engineering
Production Manager
Professor Kwon
Electrical Engineering
Professor Sup
Mechanical Engineering


Listed below are all of the important reports, presentations, and documents for our project. Most recent documents are at the top.


4/25/2014 - 4/26/2014

Demo Day! Below is a video of our project that was presented to the entire department and to the public during the two demo days. There is also a picture of the team with the finished project.


Final Project Review (FPR) Demo. Both compartments are fully constructed and mounted to a base. Full automation of both the storage compartment and the mixing compartment, including the pump for the base solution. Status updates are sent back to the user throughout the automation.


Comprehensive Design Review (CDR) Demo. 2-axis and electronic pipette fully functioning and controlled via web interface. 2-way, real-time communication between client and server. Tracking of motor positions and function to return them all to the origin.


Presenting our first semester progress at Fall SDP day. User Interface (left). BeagleBone Black, drivers, and motors (middle). Electronic Pipette and 3-axis rail (right).


Electronic pipette is successfully filling and dispensing fluid with high accuracy.


Design of 3-axis rail system is complete. Time to fabricate and assemble.


Design of entire system overview is now complete.


Preliminary user interface complete. This will allow 2-way communication between the BeagleBone Black and the motors via a webpage.