EE 494 - SENIOR DESIGN


INDUSTRY and FACULTY -
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  • VIEW A FEW SUCCESSFUL PROJECTS

    Enfinitar Guitar Energy Harvesting/USB Charging Monitor the Crewing BIG PV Demonstration

    Past Student Projects

    Essential Alarm Clock
    Team: Joe Kosinski, Mike Sano, Jeffrey Cox
    Technical Advisor:
    The Abstract: The traditional alarm clock is perhaps one of the most dreaded instruments amongst the general poplulation today. Our alarm clock aims to eliminate the problems with traditional alarm clocks and wake the user comfortably and on time. The Essential Alarm Clock utilizes music and light to prepare the user for waking, and includes sensors to ensure that the user wakes on time. Setup of the alarm clock will be simple and intuitive, and once completed will require no further input. The alarm turns itself off automatically when the user is out of bed and each day of the week can be independently set for diverse schedules. The Essential Alarm Clock has tremendous market potential and has the potential to revolutionize the way the world wakes up.

    High Voltage Generator
    Team: Kin Sze, Thang Doan
    Technical Advisor: Dr Whalen, Dr. DC Hopkins
    The Abstract: High Voltage Generator is used as a self-defense product to stop an attacker. In addition the high voltage generator can be use as fire starter for other emergency situations. A primary goal for this project is to have a very low amperage, so there will be no serious or permanent injury inflicted.

    Remote RF Power Monitoring System
    Team: Donald Eastman, Jason McGraw, & Deepika Vij
    Technical Advisor:
    The Abstract: Typical transmission tower sites are located on the tops of hills to provide the best radio coverage for its intended purpose. These tower sites are normally unmanned and therefore fault or degradation notification gets delayed. Our goal is to design an easily expandable power monitoring system to sample forward and reverse power for each transmitter and antenna at a particular tower site. Operators can view the performance of their repeaters/base stations over the internet and contact maintenance as needed.

    Wireless Earthquake Environment Monitor
    Team: Paul Herrmann, Sohaib Ahmed, Arushi Malik
    Technical Advisor:
    The Abstract: Our goal is to construct W.E.E.M (Wireless Earthquake/Environment Monitor). The project will include a ground movement trigger, which will enable the X-Y-Z axis accelerometer sensors. Upon start-up, a 2.4 Ghz transmitter will begin sending data to the receiver board, which is controlled by a Motorola MCS08GT60 8-bit processor. Acquired data is sent from the receiver, through an RS-232 serial port and displayed on a PC via the graphical user interface.

    Irrigation Monitoring Control System
    Team: Ebow Cobbina, Tae woo Kim and Brian Braun
    Technical Advisor: Dr. Hopkins, Dr. Terrill, Dr. Schindler
    The Abstract: Today farmers have limited time and resources. The weather doesn’t always cooperate with providing enough rainfall to produce an abundant crop. The farmer is forced to use some type of irrigation system. Irrigation systems are tightly controlled by time and high energy costs, therefore the farmer needs those systems to be running as much as possible when needed. A farmer may have many irrigation systems that are many miles apart and can not spend his entire day driving around making sure that his systems are running. The importance to the farmer is almost incalculable. There maybe times when a farmer checks his irrigation systems and see that they are running, only to have them shut off once they are out of his sight. The farmer may not notice they are off until later in the afternoon and due to regulations on run time the farmer may not be able to start again until 24 hours later. That amount of critical irrigation time could potentially mean the difference between a profitable year and one that barely breaks even. Our objective is to design a system that, once the irrigation system shuts off, will dial a preprogrammed phone number and inform the farmer that the system is shut off by means of a prerecorded message.

    Lucid Dream Inducer
    Team: Payal Ballaya, Santiago Yeomans, Zubair Rehman
    Technical Advisor: Dr. Wabschall, Dr. Artemio Aguilar
    The Abstract: Hardware implementation of a product that’ll allow the dreamer to become aware of his condition of REM sleep, in such a way that he won’t wake up, yet be able to be conscious inside his own dream, allowing for control of lucid dreaming.

    Affordable PC Based Oscilloscope
    Team: Peter Strzempka, Chad Cummins, Riyadh Almadrahi
    Technical Advisor:
    The Abstract: Typical oscilloscopes are large and very expensive, far too expensive for a student. The PC Scope features inexpensive hardware that will be connected to a computer allowing the monitor to act as the oscilloscope. The heart of the PC Scope features an A/D converter with a very fast sampling rate to allow for measurement of high frequencies. At the user end, the software will show the waveforms and will allow the user to change the time intervals for better viewing.

    Wireless Weather Station
    Team: Dong Mei Qu, Choon Sian Ooi, Kee Soon Lim
    Technical Advisor:
    The Abstract: During 21th Century, weather is the number one reason that people watch local television news and it's one of the top five reasons that people surf the Web. Keeping a close eye on changes in the weather is an important safety concern, especially in areas of the country affected by sudden storms, snow, hurricanes or other dangerous weather events. The objective of this project is to embark on the design of the Wireless Weather Station with minimum cost and maintenance. The Wireless Weather Station consist two main part, remote and base station. The remote station is consisted with temperature, humidity, and pressure sensors, RF circuit, PIC microcontroller to transmit data to the base station. The base station is consisted with PIC microcontroller, RF receiver, and is connected to the PC to display the data it receive from remote station in a simple and easily understanding manner on the computer screen.

    HeadStart Mouse
    Team: Brad Schwagler, Larry Panzarella, Wynx Kok Soo Wei
    Technical Advisor: Dr. Hopkins
    The Abstract: Assistive technology is one of the most rapidly advancing markets today and often uses leading edge technology. An inherent problem with most new technology is high cost. TechniDesign focuses on developing a product to be used to control a personal computer’s cursor with only head movement and be significantly less costly than current solutions. To reduce costs while still providing a reliable and convenient product, state of the art Micro-Electronic-Machined-Systems (MEMS) sensors will be used to detect head orientation. The user’s head orientation will determine the cursor’s movement or perform a pre-determined function. The end result will be an affordable head controlled mouse that will be an incredible godsend for many paraplegic people.

    Low Cost Weather Satellite Receiver Design
    Team: Joshua Kinne, Khyl Lee, Sultan Sallaj
    Technical Advisor:Dr. James Whalen
    The Abstract: Current solutions for receiving satellite weather imagery are very high cost, and require a degree of technical expertise to implement. Our goal is to design a system for receiving weather satellite images that is both low cost and simple to use. Additionally, we will develop an automated web site that will share the raw data and imagery.

    Punchmeter
    Team: Heanyi Bob- Nwachukwu, Chris Riggs
    Abstract: One of the major problems facing professional boxing since its inception in 1867 is inaccurate scoring. Scoring is based on the number of punches landed and the weight of the punches. Judges are unable to accurately count the number of punches landed in a contest due to the position they are watching from, and have an inability to accurately assess how hard the punch was. This scoring system has flaws due to human error, bad eye sight and slow reflexes. This has resulted in hotly disputed contests where a boxer who threw fewer punches wins a bout based on the weight of his punches when there is no way that the judges could accurately measure these weights. The sport suffers greatly from situations where a boxer wins or losses based on the judges decision with inaccurate information. The project will develop an easy to use system that requires minimal set up time, is cost effective and is durable as possible. Electronic equipment on the gloves are very light and will not hinder their athletic ability, is accurate, efficient has low power dissipation

    Automated Detector of Limited Emotion
    Members:
    Brian M. Demers, Andrea Schmitz, Mike Harvey (B.A.M.)
    Sponsor:UBTalker Project
    Abstract:  The proposed project will address the need for people without the ability to express emotion to do so. Using the right equipment, it is possible to understand what internal reactions occur in the human body when an emotion is being felt. It is also possible to observe certain tendencies when emotions change. The design project proposed will implement both hardware and software to detect and analyze these reactions. It will use sensors commonly found on polygraphs and other medical equipment. The acquisition and analysis of the data will be used to automatically update software in order to alter a synthesized voice, through a program called the UBTalker. After completing this project, we will be able to reflect limited emotions that the subject is feeling and, in turn, benefit those individuals who have certain muscular deficiencies.

    UFDR Test Interface
    Member: Kevin G. Balys, Robert E. Seymour
    Sponsor: Aero Instruments and Avionics, Inc.
    Abstract:Problem: There has long been a labor intensive issue regarding the verification of the proper workmanship and quality of parts installed in the Honeywell Universal Flight Data Recorder (UFDR). This is due to the extreme accuracy that is required when aligning the tape deck. The alignment must be measured and aligned to plus or minus 0.0005 of an inch. Once the technician has performed the alignment procedure an inspector must verify the alignment by repeating the alignment processes. This is very labor intensive and amounts to several additional hours being spent double checking the technicians work.
    Solution: With a monitoring system that will send data to the Flight Data Recorder and then compare the data that the Flight Data Recorder is echoing back, a comprehensive check can be accomplished. This check would summarize the performance of the Flight Data Recorder for the entire recording period, twenty-five hours. The monitoring system will have the capability of creating an error log file that will keep track of not only the number of times the Flight Data Recorder did not echo back the same data that was transmitted to it, but also the length of time the echoed data did not match the transmitted data, and finally the track in which this error occurred. This log file will be instrumental in determining if proper alignment has been accomplished. It will also be able to provide an extra step of insurance regarding the workmanship of the technicians.
    This project will directly benefit the Flight Recording Department at Aero Instruments and Avionics, Inc. Streamlining the testing procedure and reducing the labor that is currently expended verifying the technicians work. This will increase the profitability of the department and therefore the bottom line for the entire company. The recording system will be able to remain in use for as long as Honeywell Universal Flight Data Recorders are being used in the field.

    Noise Reduction
    Member: Nick Kozar, Brian Griffiths, Dave Schieder
    Sponsor:Lockheed Martin,Niagara Falls, NY
    Abstract:To complete the design requirements for EE 494, our group was hired as an intern team at Lockheed Martin in Niagara Falls, NY. We had been assigned to a project involving programmable logic device (PLD) boards and the data acquisition hardware. Our project was to identify noise error sources within the hardware, and to design sampling methods and hardware for the PLD boards. In addition to this hardware work, we were responsible for writing the code to extract serial PLD data to the USB port of a laptop for analysis. Our group worked at least four hours a day, two days a week in the lab with additional time spent on report writing and component research. The group has received its own lab space and desk space, and worked under the guidance of a Senior Engineer.

    Other Interesting Student Projects

    Dur-Alarm with Collida-Snooze
    Team: Timothy Giles, Nathan Majchrzak, David Bachowski
    Technical Advisor:
    The Abstract: Most everyone wakes up to an alarm of some type. One could even say that the alarm-clock is a necessity of today’s fast-paced, time-crushed society. However the alarm clock itself has not changed much since the 1970s. USEtech aims to completely re-invent the alarm clock. Dur-Alarm will include such features as a novel approach to snooze called “Collida-Snooze” and the ability to set the multiple alarms without the repetitive use of a single button to cycle through numbers. This will take the alarm clock industry by storm. Today’s workforce needs the ability to wake up at different times on different days. Using the 7-day alarm feature a user could wake up at different times on different days, or disable the alarm all together. This could possibly save someone hours over the course of a year in time spent setting, and re-setting the alarm. Although cost will not be a primary concern, the cost to the consumer of the final product should remain around $50. Heavy design emphasis will be placed on ease-of-use and functionality of Dur-Alarm.

    Photo-responsive Solar Cell
    Team: Jason Bowker, Gabrielle Viles, Chris Messina
    Technical Advisor: Professor Anderson, Dr. DC Hopkins
    The Abstract: Photovoltaic cells are a clean and renewable source of electrical energy but to achieve maximum efficiency they must be facing directly at the light source. Because of this current applications use one of two methods when utilizing photovoltaic cells. The first option is to use static cells that do not move, and therefore do not always have maximum efficiency. The other alternative is to move the cells through a programmed path. The problem with this second method is that it requires a significant amount of knowledge both in computer programming and astronomy to know exactly what path the sun will follow through the sky based on the month, and then program the cells to follow that path. This means that installing a moving photovoltaic cell requires a skilled technician to properly align and program the cells. If a solution could be found to create a photovoltaic cell which could actually sense where the sun was in the sky and point toward it automatically, it would be possible to harness the maximum efficiency of the cells without having a trained technician install and maintain them.

    Hands-Free Keyless Entry for Automobiles
    Team: Ryan Bradley, Nick Metzar, Zack Pelis
    Technical Advisor: Dr. Hopkins
    The Abstract: Our system elaborates on the ease of Remote Keyless Entry Systems for automobiles. Instead of having to push a button or insert a key to unlock their car or pop their trunk lid, the operator will simply need to approach the door or trunk that they wish to unlock and pause in front of it. Sensors in the car doors and trunk will recognize a transceiver either on the operator's key chain or implanted in the key, and unlock the door or pop the trunk lid. In addition, the system will have a time-delayed lock when the transceiver is no longer sensed. By design, the system will promote safety, security, and ease of use, especially when the operator needs to have their car locked or unlocked while his or her hands are full.

    Low Speed Collision Avoidance System
    Team: Adam Halstead, Nitin Mistry
    Technical Advisor: Dr. M. Safiuddin
    Abstract: The general trend that automotive manufacturers are following is safety in design. Vehicles often face the most difficult driving situations at low speeds, such as in parking lots, driveways, around tight corners, etc. A system which will prevent all instances of low speed collisions will be developed for inclusion into modern vehicles. By taking into consideration environmental conditions like visibility and road conditions, collision avoidance can be much more reliable. The low speed collision avoidance system will provide complete proximity detection around the vehicle and cause precise and smooth braking on the vehicle to ensure prevention of collisions with external objects. By sensing the environment in which it is driving, accurate and smooth braking can be ensured. This collision avoidance system will be incorporated into a 1/6 scale R/C vehicle for testing and demonstration purposes.

    Swim Video Capture Cart
    Member: Tony Lizauckas
    Sponsor:UB Atheltics Dept.
    Abstract: This project is the design and construction of a automated video cart to travel along the side of the pool and capture multiple digital camera angles of a swimmer. The video captured will then be used to improve technique and increase the rate of improvement of the individual swimmer. The cart is designed to automatically travel along the pool deck based on a computer inputted time and distance, along with the digital capture of all video to a laptop computer.

    Last Updated: April 2008

    State University of New York at Buffalo

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