Senior Design 2006-07

Fall 2006

Digitally Controlled Power Supply

By Brian Steggall

This project is based on the concept of wanting an automated calibration system. In order to test various aspects of a particular product you must be able to supply a near constant voltage at a variety of values to determine the accuracy within. This design requires approximately 0 to 40 VDC, rated at about 4 amperes. The device needs to communicate to a computer via a RS –232 or IEEE 488 connection. Also a digitally controlled, as well as a manual, on/off switch must be implemented. The entire system must be maintainable and easy to calibrate. The system will probably be incorporated into many test procedures, but first it needs to be designed, built and tested and that is my goal.

Central Patient Monitoring Unit (CPMU)

By Matthew Voigt, Aaron Jacobs, Hiap Weng Eng

In patient care facilities across the country, many patients are subjected to monitoring by means of stationary equipment, usually located in their rooms beside their beds. However, the mobility of these patients is very restricted by the mobility of the equipment itself simply because patients cannot venture far from their rooms without proper nursing attention. Since there is a major nursing shortage in all areas of the USA, many patients are not getting the proper monitoring and attention that they need. In order to help patients and nurses at the same time with this problem, we propose the Central Patient Monitoring Unit (CPMU). The CPMU will allow patients to be more mobile with less hassle and with continuous monitoring from nurses. It will allow nurses to monitor patients more easily and effectively from one station. This system is composed of two main components: a Wireless Transmitting Module (WTM) which is attached to the patient, and the Central Patient Database (CPD), which is located at the nurse’s station.

Audio Amplifier with Digital Effects

By Rajendra Acharya, Tapas Neupane

Audio guitar amplifiers are easily available in the market, however they are exorbitantly priced. Guitarists also use effects such as echo, chorus, flange and distortion to process their guitar signal. The cost of purchasing such effects is not reasonable either. Novice guitarists, thus, are deterred from purchasing quality amplifiers and effects. Low noise audio amplifier with built in digital effects using a microcontroller can be built at much lower cost. To create the digital effects, however, lot of data memory is needed. Thus, using either a digital signal processor chip or a fast microcontroller with lots of data memory, digital effects can be created. Thus, a low cost low noise power amplifier with digital effects can be designed and built at a much lower cost than the amplifiers that are available in the market.

Spring 2007

Digitially Controlled Analog Tranceiver

by Gesmundo, Matthew; Peterson, Timothy; Honeck, Kelly

Most amateur band radios (ham radio) are either all analog (hardware) or all digital (software). For current amateur radio equipment the disadvantage is that the digital signal processing (software) filters are not as selective as the older style analog (hardware) filter. The advantage to the newer digital systems is that the controls for the digital radios are easily configurable/customizable and tend to be easier to use. In creating a digitally controlled analog transceiver we gain the ease of use of a digital radio and the high selectivity of an analog radio. We limited ourselves to the 20 meter band which spans the frequency range of 14.000 MHz to 14.350 MHz. The radio has a graphical user interface running on a Linux based computer system with a USB connection to the transceiver hardware. The transceiver hardware uses a mircocontroller to control all the functions of the transceiver subsystems using a serial protocol interface.

Unmanned Ground Vehicle (Vulcan)

by Idziorek, Joseph; Ficker, Justin; Boesche, Josh

The emergence of Unattended Ground Vehicles (UGV) over the last five years has made it accessible to the average person in the work force. The objective of our project is to create a UGV capable of deploying and retrieving unattended ground sensors over a one-mile range. In addition, we conducted research on the many different ways in which a user can control a vehicle. As UGVs become more prevalent in aiding humans to perform hazardous, tedious, or remote tasks, it will be necessary to develop a refined graphical user interface (GUI) as well as an effective method of vehicle control. In order to create an effective layout for our GUI, we conducted research on the positioning, availability, and functionality of the sensor information sent back from the UGV. We also determined whether it is more effective to control the vehicle with a direct or indirect pointing method. This research was done by consulting both ends of the user spectrum. Combining the feedback from both professionals and volunteers, we adjusted our GUI and control method to employ a carefully crafted and considered design. The combination of these two findings assisted us in determining the most effective design for UGV control that will accommodate the widest variety possible of user backgrounds.

Wireless Restaurant System

by Busacker, David; Nere, Andrew; Guertin, Timothy

This project entails the design and development of a system that facilitates increased efficiency in restaurant operations. The system consists of two main components: a wireless handheld device for servers and a base station with a graphical user interface for monitoring orders and transactions. The handheld employs a LCD touch screen interface, a credit card reader and thermal printer for payments, and a wireless transceiver for communication with the base station computer located in the kitchen. This system allows the server to carry out many tasks without repeated trips through the restaurant.

Frequency Recording Units (FRU)

by Bawa, Agliesso N; Armstrong, Phillip

Intensity Measurement Device for LED warning system

by Gutridge, Richard; Henspeter, Justin; Olmscheid, Derek

The objective of this project is to identify the required specifications for the use of LED lighting on snowplows and related maintenance and construction vehicles. The specifications will be determined based on a need to maintain or exceed current safety levels. Current specifications do not directly address LED emergency lighting for these vehicles. MNDot is currently making efforts to replace the standard incandescent based emergency lighting with LED based lighting. No standard exists for quantitative measurements of intensity in LED based warning systems as compared to standard filament strobes. As of now MNDot uses subjective testing for lighting systems. The final project will provide this quantitative data to MNDot and allow them to make decisions regarding vendor products.

RS232-DMX Light Controller

by Kasparek, Thomas; Berger, Darcy; Frost, Katie

Internet Telephony

by Karmacharya, Bipin; Shakya, Rajish; Opasnawakun, Komgrich

In the ongoing rapid evolution of digital communication field there is a new name called Internet Telephony. Internet Telephony refers to voice and voice-messaging applications that are transported via the Internet rather than the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN). Our main objective for this project is to design a reliable Internet telephony system at a minimal cost. This system can be used in the same way as a regular phone with the only difference being dialing an Internet Protocol (IP) address instead of a phone number. The caller dials the destination Internet protocol (IP) address from a keypad; the phone rings on the receiving end and the other user may pick up the handset and have regular communication through handsets. The basic steps involved in originating an internet telephone call are conversion of the analog voice signal to digital format and compression/translation of the signal into IP packets for transmission over the Internet. The process is reversed at the receiving end. With this system, one can use their internet network as regular phone service.

Weather Monitoring System with Wireless Capacbility (WMS)

by Eiden, Matthew; Frank, Cory; Ahmed, Taimour

At St. Cloud State University seniors of the Electrical and Computer Engineering department are required to use their skills, knowledge from previous classes, and personal research to design, test and successfully demonstrate a completed product prior to graduation. The project we propose is a weather monitoring system (WMS). This project will consist of a base station that will collect data from multiple wireless sensor units (WSU). Each WSU will record data such as: humidity, temperature and dew point. Data will be transmitted to the base station, where it will be uploaded to a labtop to view on a software we will create. Sensors can be added to the WSU at later times to accommodate different reading. The significance of this project is to assist meteorologists gather data from the environment. The data gathered will then be used by the customer for research purposes. Dr. Rodney Kubesh of the Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at St. Cloud State University is our main customer, and will use our project to better serve his weather research.

Wireless Network detector

by Brahmbhatt, Amit; Ouedraogo, Wend

Digitally controlled power supply relay box

by Lohani, Ummid; Upreti, Rapan

The purpose of this project is to automate digitally controlled power supply relay box used in Hot Plug reliability test for enterprise hard drives manufactured in Seagate Technology. For the hot plug test currently Seagate is using manual switching to turn the drive on and off to do test on drive. Each power supply box will supply voltage to 8 different hard drives where hard drives are connected through one data bus to the computer servers. Motivation on doing this project is to build multiple automatic power supply box each box supplying power to 8 different drives at lower cost than other product available in market which can be controlled by user friendly GUI from computer interfaced by serial and Wireless connection. Also output can be monitored on user side to see amount of current flowing on each port. The main purpose of this digital power relay box is to supply power to number of drive. The reliability test actually is done to see effect of one hard drives on the others when the power is switched on and off sequentially. In this project we are only building power supply box to control the switch. The requirements for this project is to supply 5VDC, 12VDC and grounds to all the drives where 12VDC is used to drive the motor and 5VDC is used for other electronics in the hard drive. Each power relay box supplies both voltages to 8 different drives where each of the supply is digitally controlled by GUI through serial interface to turn on or off. Beside the basic requirement, we have proposed to make it more versatile by adding wireless connectivity and also power monitor for each drive that will be send back to computer.

A digital device to determine polarization axis of lens

by Hussain, Fahad, Hossain, Saddam

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