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Title: A Wheelchair Navigation System as a Collaborative Senior Project PDF
Url: http://search.asee.org/search/fetch?url=file%3A%2F%2Flocalhost%2FE%3A...
Creator: Burbank, Kenneth
Cooper-Duffy, Karena
Holcomb, John P.
Prohn, Ken
Publisher: American Society for Engineering Education
Description: Senior projects are common requirements in engineering technology programs. Seniors are challenged to integrate in one project the knowledge, skills and abilities learned over three plus years. Recently, the projects at Western Carolina University have ranged from wireless car alarms to three-phase motor test stations to back up energy sources for aquariums. An integral part of the Department's mission is external engagement, so the Electrical and Computer Engineering Technology faculty look for projects that can connect the WCU seniors to the community. Recently, faculty from the College of Education and Allied Professions and the Department of Engineering and Technology identified several special needs cases where a technical innovation could improve a student's quality of life in the classroom. The initial project was the addition of a navigation system to a wheelchair. In this case, a child who is deaf-blind was given a motorized wheelchair, and a method was needed to prevent the student from running into objects in the classroom. A system was designed using four ultrasonic sensors controlled by a microcontroller board. Depending on the returned signal from the sensors, an alarm was activated to warn the student. In this design, a vibrating motor from a cell phone provided the alarm. The classroom teacher had the responsibility to teach the student to associate the vibration with the closeness to an obstacle. In the future, this classroom teacher hopes to expand the student's abilities such that the student can sense each of the four directional sensors individually. As an electrical engineering technology senior project, the wheelchair navigation system required the WCU senior to integrate microcontrollers, sensors, programming, and power supplies and to consider the packaging issues. In addition, the collaboration required the senior to communicate with grade school teachers and the Special Education Program faculty. More importantly, this collaboration helped the senior connect his technical expertise with the needs of others and this sense of purpose energized the senior and his classmates.
LC Classification: Bibliography. Library science. Information resources (General) -- Subject bibliography -- Education -- Special topics, A-Z -- Engineering education
Medicine -- Surgery -- Orthopedia. Orthopedic surgery -- Orthopedic instruments, apparatus, and appliances -- Other apparatus, A-Z -- Wheelchairs
Technology -- Electrical engineering. Electronics. Nuclear engineering
GEM Subject: Science -- Engineering
Science -- Instructional issues
Vocational Education -- Trade and industrial
Key Concept: Electrical engineering
Resource Type: Instructional Materials
Reading Materials
Science Materials
Teaching Guides
Format: pdf
Audience: College/University Instructors
Higher Education
Secondary Education
Technical School First Cycle
Technical School Second Cycle
University First Cycle
University Second Cycle
Vocational Training
Language: English
Rights: American Society for Engineering Education
Access Rights: Free access
Date Of Record Release: 2011-06-24 03:00:04 (W3C-DTF)
Date Last Modified: 2012-06-06 16:27:07 (W3C-DTF)
Source Type: ATE Center
Source: National Center for Manufacturing Education
Full Record Views: 142
Resource URL Clicks: 17
Cumulative Rating: NOT YET RATED
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