Systems Specialist Sasan Pirieh (right) working on the hydraulic shovel in preparation for MINExpo 2016
It is the first day of MINExpo 2016. The Las Vegas Convention Center is abuzz as engineers, executives and enthusiasts amble through the crowded halls. At the Motion Metrics island booth all eyes are on our 3ft long remote control hydraulic shovel model as it picks away at a pile of loose gravel. The prospect of driving the nimble machine has grown men lining up like children itching to take their picture with Santa Claus. On the other side of the booth, a member of our sales team pulls a tooth off our loader model and directs a visitor’s attention to a nearby monitor to demonstrate our missing tooth detection system. Just a few hours in, we already know that our models are going to be the stars of the show and there is no one more proud than our Systems Specialist Sasan Pirieh.
For his entire life, Sasan has been fascinated by machines. As a child in Iran he would take toys apart and reassemble them. When he was 15, Sasan often walked past a store displaying the latest electronic gadgets. He was particularly mesmerized by an 8mm projector but no matter how many times he asked, his father refused to buy it. One day Sasan decided that he would make one himself.
Before the internet existed, Sasan had to sift through magazines and encyclopedias to learn how such a machine functioned. In his spare time Sasan would walk through his hometown looking for the components of his projector. He even constructed his own frame out of wood. Despite the many obstacles, Sasan’s project was a success. Eventually Sasan built his own full-size 35mm projector (see below right), the same as you would find in a cinema.
Since then, Sasan graduated with a degree in industrial engineering and worked as a computer programmer. After immigrating to Canada, Sasan started working in the production department of Motion Metrics, where he helped develop the hardware components of our earliest missing tooth detection modules. However, it wasn’t until 2011 that Sasan was able to return to his main passion.
For the 2011 Expomineria tradeshow in Acapulco Mexico, the Motion Metrics marketing team had the idea of building a small scale shovel model to demonstrate how our missing tooth detection system worked. Sasan was put in charge of the project as he had by far the most experience designing and building gadgets from scratch. With no template to work from, Sasan had to rely on his resourceful ability to make something amazing out of simple materials. Eventually, he found all the necessary components at the Home Depot, except for the bucket, which he built himself out of plywood.(See above left)
The table-mounted rope shovel model turned out to be a huge hit at our tradeshow booth. Since then, designing and developing shovel and loader models has turned into Sasan’s full time job, with the models getting more sophisticated every year. Sasan now uses SolidWorks software, a CNC cutting machine, and our advanced 3D printer to develop state of the art machines that function almost the exact same way as their gargantuan counterparts. With our increased presence at tradeshows around the world, Sasan is busier than ever. His current projects include a new hydraulic shovel model, a truck model, and a conveyor belt model.