Design Competition Announcement: A call for motivated engineering and biology students!

Would you like to be part of a team competition that designs, develops, and builds a Gel transilluminator box? You may be wondering: “What is a Gel transilluminator box”? It is a light-emitting/filtering device used to visualize DNA, RNA, or protein bands in agarose and/or acrylamide gels. “Band” visualization depends upon the type of dye and specific light excitation/emission wavelengths.

The transilluminator box will need to detect all the various dyes currently being used for nucleic acids and proteins and allow for the viewing and documentation of the illuminated gel by a smartphone or tablet.

All motivated student teams are invited to participate in this design challenge. Two selected designs will be funded for building the apparatus. The biology department will test the produced boxes and if they meet the quality requirement, multiple units will be produced for use by various classes and research projects throughout campus.

How does this competition benefit you?

  •     Practice developing a design proposal
  •     An opportunity to work on a multi-disciplinary team
  •     An opportunity to learn about simple electrical circuits
  •     Develop skills of precise solid object design and production
  •     Practice reverse engineering skills
  •     A chance to show your entrepreneurship skills and drive

For more information and details, contact:
Dr. Tesfa Yacob (
Dr. David Baston (

Tesfayohanes Yacob, Ph.D.
Environmental Resources Engineering
Humboldt State University
Arcata, CA 95521