Fall 2018 Lecture Material:

Pre-Lecture #1:

(before class on Aug 28th, 2018)

Brainstorming and Ideation

  • Brainstorming and Ideation slides (pptx)
  • Videos (watch before coming to class)

Lecture #1:

(Aug 28th, 2018)

Getting Started

  • Welcome and Course Overview (pptx)
  • Pitches
  • Brainstorming & Ideation Activity (pptx)
  • May is Coming

Pre-Lecture #2:

(before Sep 4th, 2018)

Beyond Ideation

Lecture #2:

(Sep 4th, 2018)

Moving Forward

  • Agenda (pptx)
  • The RFA Process (pptx)
  • Project Management (pptx)
  • Pitches
    • Blake Johnson: POETS/John Deere Wireless Power Transfer System (pptx, contact)
    • Amr Martini: DLP Shape Shifter (pptx, contact)
    • James Allison: Wind Turbine Generator (pdf, contact)
    • Fiona Kalensky: Therapalz (pdf, contact)
  • Lab Rules & Safety I (pdf)
  • Writing Tips (pptx)
  • Design Process (pdf)

Pre-Lecture #3:

(before Sep 11th, 2018)

Design and Writing Tips

Lecture #3:

(Sep 11th, 2018)

Last Stop Before RFA

  • Agenda (pptx)
  • Effective Communication
  • Intellectual Property (pptx)
  • Presentation Tips (pptx)
  • Lab Rules and Safety II (pdf)
  • Building a Good R&V Table (pptx)
  • Project Resources (pptx)
  • Ethics (pptx)

Fall 2018 Video Lectures:


Finding a Problem (Video)
Generating Solutions (Video)
Diving Deeper (Video)
Voting (Video)
Reverse Brainstorming (Video)
Homework for Everyone (Video)

Important Information

Using the ECE 445 Website (Video)
Lab Notebook (Video , Slides)
Modular Design (Video, Slides)
Circuit Tips and Debugging (Video , Slides)
Eagle CAD Tutorial (Video)
Spring 2018 IEEE Eagle Workshop (Slides)
Spring 2018 IEEE Soldering Workshop (Slides)

Major Assignments and Milestones

Request for Approval (Video, Slides)
Project Proposal (Video, slides)
Design Document (Video, slides)
Design Review (Video, slides)
Writing Tips (Video, slides)

S.I.P. (Smart Irrigation Project)

Jackson Lenz, James McMahon

S.I.P. (Smart Irrigation Project)

Featured Project

Jackson Lenz

James McMahon

Our project is to be a reliable, robust, and intelligent irrigation controller for use in areas where reliable weather prediction, water supply, and power supply are not found.

Upon completion of the project, our device will be able to determine the moisture level of the soil, the water level in a water tank, and the temperature, humidity, insolation, and barometric pressure of the environment. It will perform some processing on the observed environmental factors to determine if rain can be expected soon, Comparing this knowledge to the dampness of the soil and the amount of water in reserves will either trigger a command to begin irrigation or maintain a command to not irrigate the fields. This device will allow farmers to make much more efficient use of precious water and also avoid dehydrating crops to death.

In developing nations, power is also of concern because it is not as readily available as power here in the United States. For that reason, our device will incorporate several amp-hours of energy storage in the form of rechargeable, maintenance-free, lead acid batteries. These batteries will charge while power is available from the grid and discharge when power is no longer available. This will allow for uninterrupted control of irrigation. When power is available from the grid, our device will be powered by the grid. At other times, the batteries will supply the required power.

The project is titled S.I.P. because it will reduce water wasted and will be very power efficient (by extremely conservative estimates, able to run for 70 hours without input from the grid), thus sipping on both power and water.

We welcome all questions and comments regarding our project in its current form.

Thank you all very much for you time and consideration!