Ideas for senior design project

Thread Starter

kfg4

Joined Mar 28, 2018
8
Hello everyone,
I'm starting my first semester as a senior in January, and I will be taking senior design 1. I have a couple of ideas but would like to know which ideas would be feasible to complete in the amount of time ~(6-8 months). I'm highly interested in Optics and RF (anything in the microwave frequency range and above).

Idea 1 - Wireless Optical Communication System
- How should I go about transmitting my signal from a specific laser diode to a photodiode, while also being able to recover the bits of information?
- Am i in over my head for thinking of this idea?

Idea 2 - RFID Parking Space Detector
- This is due to the fact that at my school the mobile app we have for detecting the amount of parking spaces available in the parking decks are not very reliable, as they determine it based off of the amount of people who have swiped in using their ID's and don't take into the account the fact that there are days when the parking deck is free to everyone.

I'm open to all suggestions for both these ideas and new ideas along with any criticism you may have for me.
 

dl324

Joined Mar 30, 2015
8,869
Welcome to AAC!

Regarding #2, RFID won't work any better than swiping ID's. You'd be better off counting the number of cars entering and leaving a level.
 

TechWise

Joined Aug 24, 2018
53
I presume you are in the US? I am in the UK so it would help me suggest ideas if I knew your age/ability level as I am not sure what "senior" means in your area :(

As for the car parking idea, perhaps you could look at using a camera to record the cars entering and leaving and use number plate recognition.
 

Thread Starter

kfg4

Joined Mar 28, 2018
8
I presume you are in the US? I am in the UK so it would help me suggest ideas if I knew your age/ability level as I am not sure what "senior" means in your area :(

As for the car parking idea, perhaps you could look at using a camera to record the cars entering and leaving and use number plate recognition.
Senior in College(University in the UK) means that it is your last year (you only have two semesters left), I've taken all the required courses for electrical engineering and I'm now starting to get into my concentration (RF and Optoelectronics).

As far as abilities go, I'd say I'm pretty good at coding in C++, and in circuit analysis when it comes to mixed signal circuits.

As far as courses that I've taken
-(Electronic Circuits, Signals and Systems, Random Signals and Noise, Introduction to Power Systems, Transmission line theory, Electromagnetic Fields).
 

TechWise

Joined Aug 24, 2018
53
Senior in College(University in the UK) means that it is your last year (you only have two semesters left), I've taken all the required courses for electrical engineering and I'm now starting to get into my concentration (RF and Optoelectronics).

As far as abilities go, I'd say I'm pretty good at coding in C++, and in circuit analysis when it comes to mixed signal circuits.

As far as courses that I've taken
-(Electronic Circuits, Signals and Systems, Random Signals and Noise, Introduction to Power Systems, Transmission line theory, Electromagnetic Fields).
A few interesting projects I've seen include:
  • Teams building model tanks that shoot each other with lasers. We did this with ultrasound sensors but a few teams used camera setups and beamed the stream back to a "base station" laptop running a classifier in MATLAB which decided what was tank and what wasn't.
  • Identification of animals using their RFID ear tags. This can be part of an automated feeder or weighing system.
  • A self-balancing "segway" type robot. Not particularly useful but it demonstrated a significant knowledge of classical control theory and its implementation in hardware.
  • On-line monitoring of power network components ie transformers, circuit breakers, insulators is a very hot topic. Much of the condition monitoring technology is based on detecting partial discharge and triangulating using RF sensors to locate a fault.
 

dl324

Joined Mar 30, 2015
8,869
I'm not sure if this was meant to motivate, give new ideas or basically say no.
I was just stating a fact. If you look at the picture that was transmitted back, there was data loss.

Doing communications over a very short distance would be easier than a longish distance. Laser communications is line of sight, so distance would have an upper limit.
 

DNA Robotics

Joined Jun 13, 2014
499
NASA used a laser to transmit a picture of Mona Lisa to the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter and had it transmit the results back via it's radio communication link.
"The team divided the famous da Vinci painting into sections measuring 150 by 200 pixels and then transmitted them via the pulsing of the laser to the orbiter at a data rate of about 300 bits per second."

Ha Ha. They didn't say how long it took.

RS-232 printers from the 1970's were 300 baud.

ALL Old Modem Sounds (300 baud to 56K)

The one I was remembering was V.90 from 1998.
Even at 56K, if I wanted to download a megabyte or more, I would start it before going to bed and let it rum for hours.
 
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Thread Starter

kfg4

Joined Mar 28, 2018
8
I was just stating a fact. If you look at the picture that was transmitted back, there was data loss.

Doing communications over a very short distance would be easier than a longish distance. Laser communications is line of sight, so distance would have an upper limit.
You actually just gave me an idea for a holographic imaging project, I think I like this one the most.
 

dl324

Joined Mar 30, 2015
8,869
Was it 3D and did it work out well?
It failed, but I got an A. The objective was to see if holograms could be created using filtered light instead of a laser.

We were a team of three. We went to the local college to get advice from a physics professor. He was so interested that he wanted to do our experiment.
 

DNA Robotics

Joined Jun 13, 2014
499
Could these be used with lasers for holograms?

In DLP projectors, the image is created by microscopically small mirrors laid out in a matrix on a semiconductor chip, known as a Digital Micromirror Device (DMD). These mirrors are so small that DMD pixel pitch may be 5.4 µm or less. Each mirror represents one or more pixels in the projected image.

Digital Light Processing

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Digital_Light_Processing
 
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Thread Starter

kfg4

Joined Mar 28, 2018
8
It failed, but I got an A. The objective was to see if holograms could be created using filtered light instead of a laser.

We were a team of three. We went to the local college to get advice from a physics professor. He was so interested that he wanted to do our experiment.
Sorry to hear that, I'm going to try to pursue this project, the class hasn't even begun yet and I'm already stressing over it.
 

dl324

Joined Mar 30, 2015
8,869
Sorry to hear that, I'm going to try to pursue this project, the class hasn't even begun yet and I'm already stressing over it.
We had no regrets. It had never been done before. It's a sure thing when you use lasers.
 
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