ESP Biography



BEN SENA, MIT 2013 in Course 16




Major: 16

College/Employer: Rakuten

Year of Graduation: 2013

Picture of Ben Sena

Brief Biographical Sketch:

I grew up in Winthrop, MA and attended ESP events just like you. I majored in Course 16: Aeronautics and Astronautics and graduated in 2013. I enjoy refreshing and sharing my knowledge.



Past Classes

  (Look at the class archive for more.)


The HSSP Band in HSSP Spring 2015 (Feb. 21, 2015)
Join the HSSP band and learn about music while jamming with other students. I will prepare music and instruction, but will allow you as much freedom as you can handle as a class. Before the first class I will send a message asking what everyone will be playing, so please respond to that.


Graphics with JavaScript in Splash 2014 (Nov. 22 - 23, 2014)
A quick intro into using the HTML5 canvas element to produce graphics and animations in JavaScript. I will lead a quick demo for you to follow along, and then will answer questions as the class experiments. Interactivity will be encouraged for those that make sufficient progress.


Lift! An Overview in Splash 2014 (Nov. 22 - 23, 2014)
A quick overview of relevant physics, fluid dynamics, and a description of the generation of lift.


Lift! In Detail in Splash 2014 (Nov. 22 - 23, 2014)
A more in-depth look at fluid dynamics and the mechanism and quantification of lift.


Mechanical Puzzles in Splash 2014 (Nov. 22 - 23, 2014)
Come try your hand at these physical brain teasers. Careful! You might spend all day trying to get the ring off.


Circuit Bending in Splash 2014 (Nov. 22 - 23, 2014)
"I wonder what happens if I..." Discover the soothing melodies of blindly crossed wires. I will bring some cheap keyboards, toy guitars, and other musical toys, and with some alligator clips and a little guidance you will make magic.


RC Aircraft in Spark! 2013 (Mar. 16, 2013)
Come learn how to fly an RC plane and some of the underlying principles.


Math and Music in Splash! 2012 (Nov. 17 - 18, 2012)
See how rational relationships explain harmony and consonance and experience hands-on demonstrations and visualizations; how popular tuning systems are imperfect; but how dissonance gives our minds a break.


RC Planes in Splash! 2012 (Nov. 17 - 18, 2012)
Come learn about factors in human controllability, field repair, and the details about how these birds fly.


Fun With Polyrhythms in Splash! 2012 (Nov. 17 - 18, 2012)
What does 5/8 sound like on top of 7/4? Feel free to bring your own small instruments but I'll provide some common ones if you promise to treat them well!


Homemade Wind Tunnel in Splash! 2012 (Nov. 17 - 18, 2012)
Come build a makeshift wind tunnel and perform basic tests with it.


Introductory Guitar in HSSP Summer 2011 (Jul. 10, 2011)
This class will cover basic instruction in guitar with emphasis on the physics and musical theory involved. Historical information will also be surveyed. Topics and instruction level will be driven by student interest, eagerness, and displayed skill level.


Introductory and Intermediate Guitar in HSSP Summer 2011 (Jul. 10, 2011)
This class will cover basic instruction in guitar with emphasis on the physics and musical theory involved. Historical information will also be surveyed. Topics and instruction level will be driven by student interest, eagerness, and displayed skill level.


RC Aircraft Engineering in HSSP Summer 2011 (Jul. 10, 2011)
The fundamental concepts and approaches of aerospace engineering will be highlighted through interactive classroom sessions and hands-on activities while producing remote-controlled aircraft. We will cover background kinematics, vehicle stability, controllability rating scales, and other topics as time allows. Smaller weekly projects will include balsa plane construction, intermediate classroom exercises, and others as time allows.


Capacitors and Capacitance in Splash! 2010 (Nov. 20 - 21, 2010)
Capacitors store energy in an electric field when a voltage is supplied across them (such as by a battery). This can be a good way to build up electrical charge and release it quickly. Come find out more about how they work, learn even more about them, and see what a 3000 Farad capacitor looks like.


How to Make Sushi Rice in Splash! 2010 (Nov. 20 - 21, 2010)
The rice is the critical component of sushi. The word "sushi" (寿司)itself refers to the seasoned rice, not the raw fish that often accompanies it, (that's "sashimi" 刺身). The combination of the two is wonderful, but in this class we will be focusing on making seasoned rice. It tastes great on its own and can be used to make rice balls.


How to Roll Sushi (And Eat It) in Splash! 2010 (Nov. 20 - 21, 2010)
As a follow-up for How to Make Sushi Rice, this class will teach you all you need to know about how to roll sushi and make other delicious creations. Ingredients will include sashimi-grade fish suitable for raw consumption.


Trusses in Splash! 2010 (Nov. 20 - 21, 2010)
We will look at trusses, those geometric connections of rods and joints on things like bridges, why they are important, and how to understand and analyze them.


Three- and Four-Chord Songs in Splash! 2010 (Nov. 20 - 21, 2010)
Perhaps you've seen Four Chord Song by The Axis of Awesome or The Pachelbel Rant on YouTube. Come learn most of the songs you've ever heard in two hours.


Jam Session in Splash! 2010 (Nov. 20 - 21, 2010)
Bring your instrument. Come jam.


Lightning Crystals! Building Piezoelectric Sensors in Splash! 2010 (Nov. 20 - 21, 2010)
What are piezo electric transducers? Most simply they are parallel plate capacitors with dielectric, but they are made of awesome and can directly convert mechanical stresses to electrical signals, which means you can make great contact microphones for amplifying all sorts of things. Come see just how great they are!


How to See Maths: A Slideshow of Visual Proofs in Splash! 2010 (Nov. 20 - 21, 2010)
Come see how simple math is when you can see it. Never really understood why the Pythagorean Theorem works or have trouble remembering trig identities? Don't worry, you'll leave enlightened.


Model Rocketry and Related Topics in HSSP Summer 2010 (Jul. 11, 2010 - Jul. 11, 2011)
A hands-on introduction to model rocketry and the physics and engineering topics involved. This section is for 10th-12th graders; there is another section (E3595) for 7th-9th graders.


Model Rocketry and Related Topics in HSSP Summer 2010 (Jul. 11, 2010 - Jul. 11, 2011)
A hands-on introduction to model rocketry and the physics and engineering topics involved. This section is for 7th-9th graders; there is another section (E3594) for 10th-12th graders.


How to See Maths in Junction Summer 2010 (Jul. 01 - Aug. 11, 2010)
Some qualitative visual-spatial understandings graphical proofs of concepts, mostly including those related to algebra, trigonometry, and calculus, that would otherwise just be uninspiring arrangements of symbols on pressed tree pulp. Whether you have an especially spatial-temporal mind or not you may find this class inspiring.


Let's Sushi in Junction Summer 2010 (Jul. 01 - Aug. 11, 2010)
Want to make your own sushi? Come learn to sushi, with and without sashimi (raw fish).


Lightning Crystals! Building Piezoelectric Sensors in Junction Summer 2010 (Jul. 01 - Aug. 11, 2010)
Come learn how piezoelectric crystals and ceramics and transduce mechanical and electrical energy, and then listen to them in action and manipulate them yourselves.


Three- and Four-Chord Songs in Junction Summer 2010 (Jul. 01 - Aug. 11, 2010)
Come learn how to play a song on the guitar! Never played the guitar before? Don't worry, these are the kind that people play to pretend they can play the guitar.


Making PVC Didgeridoos in Junction Summer 2010 (Jul. 01 - Aug. 11, 2010)
We will make didgeridoos, out of PVC pipes. Challah.


Lightning Crystals! Building Piezoelectric Sensors in Spark! 2010 (Mar. 13, 2010)
Have you ever wondered how how a digital drum works? This class will explore the physics and applications of the piezoelectric effect, which is the ability of some substances to directly transform electrical potentials and mechanical stresses. This gives us the ability to make cool things like "contact microphones." We will make piezoelectric transducers and see what we can amplify. Feel free to bring fun things like guitars, rubber bands, and Slinkys (SLINKYS!).


The Whistling Ensemble in Spark! 2010 (Mar. 13, 2010)
Whistling en masse.


I Can Do Sushi Me in Spark! 2010 (Mar. 13, 2010)
Can you do sushi you? I can do sushi me! We will do sushi us, caught by bears and seasoned with unicorn tears. Come ready to eat raw raw fish.


The Guitar Orchestra in Spark! 2010 (Mar. 13, 2010)
Jealous of those large gatherings of musicians who play more "sophisticated" instruments? Come gather a large amount of guitars with us! Bass guitars welcome as well, of course.


Party Tricks and Practical Jokes in HSSP Spring 2010 (Apr. 17, 2010)
Need to impress that totally cute (choose one: girl, guy) or get (choose one: her, his) attention in a pathetically juvenile manner? Or just want to learn some cool tricks and be SO SUP3R H42DC023? We can help you to cleverly exploit the mechanics of exploitable mechanics in clever ways, from toss and contact juggling to mind tricks and mental feats to opening food packaging in creative ways.


Party Tricks and Practical Jokes in HSSP Spring 2010 (Apr. 17, 2010)
Need to impress that totally cute (choose one: girl, guy) or get (choose one: her, his) attention in a pathetically juvenile manner? Or just want to learn some cool tricks and be SO SUP3R H42DC023? We can help you to cleverly exploit the mechanics of exploitable mechanics in clever ways, from toss and contact juggling to mind tricks and mental feats to opening food packaging in creative ways.


I Can Do Sushi Me in Splash! 2009 (Nov. 21 - 22, 2009)
We will be making our own sushi. The first step is catching fish with our bare hands; then we make vinegar out of unicorn tears.


Make Musics in Splash! 2009 (Nov. 21 - 22, 2009)
Come make music! Whatever you want. I will bring some instruments, you can bring whatever you want, we'll mash together whatever we end up having. YAYAYAYAY!


Lightning Crystals! Building Piezoelectric Sensors in SPLASH (2009)
We will learn about piezoelectrics - materials that transform mechanical stress into electricity! A result of this property is the ...