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Mechatronics Expert Witnesses

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Harry G. Direen, PhD, PE
Colorado Springs CO 80921
USA
phone: 719-270-1278
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Harry Direen, PhD, PE has over 30 years of experience as an engineer Designing and Developing Systems in the Electronics and Software Industry. He has taught engineering courses at the US Air Force Academy and at the University of Colorado. Dr. Direen currently works with a research group at the US Air Force Academy developing control systems and image processing using GPGPUs for UAVs. An inventor, he holds 3 United States patents.

Litigation Support - Dr. Direen has significant experience as an expert witness supporting counsel and testifying in complex patent infringement cases. He has a broad base of knowledge in electronic and software systems gained from a long career developing a wide range of products and systems. His litigation experience also includes encryption / decryption methods associated with databases and signal processing.

Dr. Direen has reverse engineered a variety of complex systems over the years, including: media players, modems, modem compression algorithms, coriolis mass flow meters, database systems, and a range of other products to support patent infringement cases generating detailed claim charts and writing expert reports to demonstrate infringement. He has successfully discovered and analyzed complex digital signal processing algorithms and pertinent operations within these products.

Dr. Direen's expertise is available to counsel representing both plaintiff and defendant. He is highly proficient in explaining complex systems to laymen.

Areas of Expertise:
  • Electronic Systems
  • Control Systems
  • Embedded Systems Design and Development
  • Databases
  • Control of UAVs / Drones
  • Robotics
  • Software
  • Signal Processing
  • Product Reverse Engineering
  • Intellectual Property
  • View Dr. Direen's Consulting Profile.
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    Paul D. Terpstra, PE
    Wisconsin USA
    phone: 608-346-2392
    Paul D. Terpstra, PE, is a Mechanical Engineer who provides forensic engineering litigation support services. He has over 30 years of experience in Mechanical Design, Programming, Electrical Design, and Troubleshooting of Automated Machinery. He applies his Root Cause Analysis skills to reconstruct events and mitigate the consequences of accidents and failures which give rise to insurance claims and sometimes legal action.

    Mr. Terpstra served as Director of Research & Development for Gilman Engineering & Manufacturing, a major supplier of custom assembly equipment, before founding Innalytical Solutions Inc. He has designed equipment used by major manufacturing companies such as Ford, GM, GE, Potter & Brumfield, Borg Warner, Caterpillar, Siemens, and Rolls Royce. He has been granted six United States patents, three foreign patents, and has two additional US patent applications pending.

    Mr. Terpstra's expert witness services are available to insurance companies and attorneys.

    Areas of Expertise:
    • 3D CAD (SolidWorks CSWP)
    • Machine Design
    • Finite Element Analysis (FEA)
    • Mechanical Design
    • Control System Design
    • Mechatronic Design
    • Motion Control
    • Linear Servos
    • PLC Programming
    • Motion Programming
    • Forensic Engineering
    CNC Programming
  • Vision Inspection
  • Problem solving / Trouble-shooting
  • Machinery Repair
  • Control System Upgrades
  • Control System Retrofits
  • CNC Retrofits
  • Automation
  • Assembly Processes
  • Project Management
  • Failure Analysis
  • View Paul Terpstra's Consulting Profile.
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    Mukul Verma, PhD
    Consultant & Professor of Mechanical Engineering

    USA
    phone: 248-971-0705
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    Mukul Verma Vehicle Engineering Expert PhotoMukul K. Verma, PhD in Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics, brings more than 35 years of industrial, academic and R&D experience to his consulting practice. This extensive experience includes various engineering and management assignments in the development and testing of new automobiles at a major manufacturer of vehicles. He has led the implementation of technical advances in multiple fields of vehicle design and automotive safety, some examples being in areas such as - performance of airbag systems, pedestrian’s protection, car-to-SUV crashes, telematics for crash notifications, post-crash protection, heavy truck rollovers, motorcycle handling, etc. During period, Dr. Verma was additionally appointed by the automobile manufacturers’ associations and other research organizations to lead an international team of experts which then successfully developed engineering solutions to the urgent problem of safety of occupants in passenger cars when involved in crashes with heavier SUVs or pickup trucks.

    His recent academic experience has been in the field of sustainable transportation and he has taught graduate courses in mechatronics systems in vehicles and intelligent tire-and-vehicle systems.

    Dr. Verma has published more than thirty papers in peer-reviewed journals and at international conferences and has been active in professional organizations as invited speaker, session chairman and organizer. He is well-known for his expertise in Vehicle Engineering and Traffic Safety and his interviews and opinions have appeared in US and in international media on several occasions

    Litigation Support – Dr. Verma’s recent litigation-related work has been in two fields:

    1. Automotive forensics – accident investigation and product liability evaluation of automobiles. His work includes detailed incident analysis, evaluation of the performance of vehicle and airbag systems, preparation of expert reports, depositions and trial testimony.

    2. Intellectual Property – analysis of a patent’s validity and evaluation of infringement claims for complex electromechanical and safety-related components. This includes literature search, prior art, detailed reports on validity & infringement and deposition and trial testimony.

    His clients have included automobile manufacturers, large corporations, private citizens and government entities.

    View Dr. Verma's Consulting Profile.
    Many automobile accidents are complex cases with multiple events during a single accident. The aim of forensic investigations of such (and all other) accidents is to reconstruct the sequence and the severity of events during the accident and then to establish cause and- effect relationships between the injuries (or damages) and the probable factors - vehicle design (e.g. brakes, structure, airbags); vehicle operator (e.g. distracted driver, alcohol impairment, reduced vision); and operating conditions (e.g. fog, failed traffic sign, excessive speed, icy road).

    Hybrid cars have been on US roads for many years, starting with Honda InSight (1999) and Toyota Prius(2000) in mass production.

    In crashes between two automobiles, it is generally assumed that the lighter vehicle will suffer more damage and that its occupants will suffer higher levels of injury.

    This article contains a few of the findings from our recent study of automobile safety in frontal crashes. Parts of the data analyses are presented but details such as the relationship of a particular design feature to the measured injury indicators are highly dependent on specific cases and are available only for individual discussions.

    The New Car Assessment Program (NCAP) conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (part of the U.S Department of Transportation) underwent major changes recently. For automobiles designated as model years 2011 and later, the changes involve both what is measured and what is published.

    Over the years, there have been several product liability litigations regarding pedestrians being injured and the front structure designs of the vehicles being alleged as the significant factor.

    The structural behavior of automobile seats and seatbacks is one of the factors often examined in investigating injuries to a vehicle's occupant(s) in crashes.

    Airbags in modern automobiles have been around for many years and their record in improving occupant safety in crashes is generally well accepted. However, many questions still arise regarding their deployment and performance in crashes.