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Electrical & Computer Engineering - 2019 Senior Design Abstracts

  • Fairview Middle School
  • FSU Primary Care and Behavioral Health Center
  • Panama City Beach Fire Station
  • Ford Dealership Site Design
  • Trulieve Ben Bostic Site Expansion
  • Safe Routes to Schools
  • Jackson County Urgent Care Facility
  • FAMU Way Phase 3 Extension
  • Bloxham Street Bridge
  • Blue Springs Park Remodel
  • Southern Furniture Warehouse
  • Haskins Circus Complex Pedestrian Bridges
  • Alligator Creek Culvert
  • NCAA Cross-Country Facility
  • Mendenhall Rainwater Capture
  • All Saints Redevelopment
  • Hop & Grind Brewhouse Site Design
  • Little Pine Barren Creek Bridge Replacement
  • Habitat for Humanity Timber-Framed House
  • Dollar General Store Site Development
  • Clara Avenue and Hutchison Boulevard Intersection Redesign
  • Apartments at Capitola
Juan Patino Castano (EE), Joshua Reid (ME), Matthew Roberts (EE), Francisco Silva Vicuna (EE), Haley Barrett (ME) and Kody Koch (ME)
Search and Rescue Drone

Drones are a very important tool in dangerous situations or inaccessible terrain. Our sponsor, the Florida Department of Emergency Management and Homeland Security (EMHS), contacted us to create a drone that uses a computer to find targets in emergency situations. The customer asked for longer flight time and range to achieve a more effective search and rescue option than their current drone offers. 

To increase the flight time, we used batteries with more energy and a more effective power system. We also used a better communication system to get the desired range. We designed the drone like an airplane rather than a helicopter so it can fly more efficiently.

With these decisions, we designed a drone that can cover a larger area than previous versions. An early design had a flight time of about 10 minutes—and a short range. With the fixed-wing design and new communication systems, our drone design extends flight time significantly and increases the operating range to over a mile.

Team (L to R):
Juan Patino Castano (EE), Joshua Reid (ME), Matthew Roberts (EE), Francisco Silva Vicuna (EE), Haley Barrett (ME) and Kody Koch (ME)
Advisor(s):
Jerris Hooker, Ph.D.
Sponsor:
FSU Department of Emergency Management and Homeland Security
Marius Urdareanu (EE), Tyree Lewis (CPE), Grant Steans (CPE) and Nathaniel Henry (EE)
Software Defined Radio- Synthetic Aperture Radar

This is an ongoing project sponsored by Northrop Grumman. The main objective of our version of the project is to detect metal objects at a range of 40 feet using a software defined radio instead of the old hardware-based design. The design is transmitting and receive horns lined in a cross pattern, each with openings for the transceiver process needed to detect metal objects. The Software Defined Radio-Synthetic Aperture Radar (SDR-SAR) can be used in many places, such as government offices and airports. The radar is meant to be hidden from view while on and will spot metal objects that appear within its field of view.

In the previous version, the radar used little to no software processing and during operation, the SAR experienced leakage noise between the horns while detecting a metal object. As a result, the accuracy of the received data was compromised. The previous team determined that using only hardware for the radio made fixing the problem difficult. 

Our design uses software processing to fix the noise issue. We added programmable radios to filter the noise between the horns, and we used software to model and setup the radios within the electronics box. The setup is important for performing signal tests and data management. We tested the component order and redesigned the electronic box layout to accommodate the SDRs in the most space-efficient way.

Team (L to R):
Marius Urdareanu (EE), Tyree Lewis (CPE), Grant Steans (CPE) and Nathaniel Henry (EE)
Advisor(s):
Jerris Hooker, Ph.D.
Sponsor:
Northrop Grumman
Andrue Peters (CPE), Sean Kelly (EE), Alexander Valdivia (CPE), John Lajoie (EE/CPE, dual degree) and Henry Troutman (EE)
Emergency Text Radio

The purpose of our design is to provide a long-range text messaging communications device. A network of these devices will allow reliable communication over two- to five miles with backpack-portable, light weight, interconnected radios in areas where cellular communications are unavailable, such as areas that recently suffered a natural disaster. This network will be used as a tool for emergency services to communicate map coordinates and reliably relay and store information from one remote group to the next. It will also be capable of allowing individuals in rural areas to communicate using the same devices where there are no cellular networks. 

We built a device—a network of radios—with the capability of sending text-based data over distances of greater than one mile. It had to be battery operated, easily portable and durable enough to survive operation in a disaster zone, yet able to display data in less than ideal conditions. 

The finished device uses an LCD screen to display messages and is controlled by a PIC microcontroller. A second printed circuit board, using an array of tactile switches connected to the keyboard controller, provides a user interface. This keyboard controller communicates the data back to the primary processor through a common serial interface. The system is powered by a 7.2AV 5 Amp-Hour battery and regulated by a simple type of clean power regulator. The housing is made of milled aluminum for added durability.

Team (L to R):
Andrue Peters (CPE), Sean Kelly (EE), Alexander Valdivia (CPE), John Lajoie (EE/CPE, dual degree) and Henry Troutman (EE)
Advisor(s):
Jerris Hooker, Ph.D.
Sponsor:
FSU Department of Emergency Management
Nicholas Stiles (CPE), Derek Swenson (CPE), Michael Calisi (EE), Cody Vanderpool (ME) and Steven Roy (ME)
Formula 1/10 Autonomous Vehicle

Our project is inspired by the Formula 1/10 Racing Competition which is an international event that challenges students to design and build 1/10th scale self-driving cars. 

Our car uses sensors and onboard computers to navigate from one point to another while avoiding obstacles. Starting with a common RC car chassis, multiple parts were added including cameras, LIDAR, computers and motors. 

We use two cameras, providing the car simulated depth perception. This allows the vehicle to determine obstacle distance and when to turn. The LIDAR is the other main sensor, employing a 360-degree spinning laser to measure distance and direction. This allows the vehicle to sense objects and walls in every direction. 

The onboard computer receives information from the sensors and makes decisions for the car. These signals are then sent to the two motors controlling the vehicle, one controlling speed and the other steering. Working together, these parts provide information from the environment, allowing the vehicle to make informed decisions in real time to avoid obstacles.

Team (L to R):
Nicholas Stiles (CPE), Derek Swenson (CPE), Michael Calisi (EE), Cody Vanderpool (ME) and Steven Roy (ME)
Advisor(s):
Jerris Hooker, Ph.D.
Sponsor:
FAMU-FSU Engineering
Annette Marin (CPE), Thomas Muscarella (CPE) and Ricky Zheng (CPE)
Virtual Reality for Rehabilitation

Seventy-five percent of patients learn to walk again after a stroke, but some still have lingering problems in the top half of their body. There is a need for improvement in helping recovering stroke patients regain strength and movement in their hands.

Current research shows that virtual reality improves movement in patients recovering from many disabilities. We developed a virtual environment that allows recovering stroke patients to simulate everyday tasks in a fun and safe way. 

A device called Leap MotionTM is our primary source of hand tracking. This allows for comfortable participation without the use of gloves. AprilTags, a system used to detect precise 3D position, is used to track an object’s movement in the simulation. These tracking methods provide the user with a simulation that has a comfortable set up and effective tracking software. 

Through our simulation, patients can practice picking up a water bottle. The water bottle exists both in the real and virtual environments. The real-world water bottle is mirrored in the virtual environment and is how patient progress is tracked. This technology allows recovering stroke patients to see an increase in strength and an improved quality of life.

Team (L to R):
Annette Marin (CPE), Thomas Muscarella (CPE) and Ricky Zheng (CPE)
Advisor(s):
Jerris Hooker, Ph.D.
Sponsor:
FAMU-FSU Engineering