# Title Team Members TA Documents Sponsor
28 Wireless Power System for John Deere
Matthew Qi
Miguel Jimenez Aparicio
Bryce Smith photo
John Deere proposed an open-ended project to develop a power system to replace the hydraulics used in power transfer for their vehicles. They want to replace the need for tubing because it can break or cut in extreme applications. This system would potentially see use in heavy machinery such as logging vehicles. They seek a proof of concept for an alternative method of power transfer without the use of wires, preferably with some ball joint to allow motion.

Our proposed solution is to create a power system that utilizes resonant inductive coupling to transfer power wirelessly through a ball joint. This ball joint will be made of magnetic material to aid the magnetic field that will be key in transferring power. At the input and output of the system, we would implement power converters and their respective control systems, connecting them at the ball joint. Further additions can be made to improve the efficiency and functionality of the system, but the basis of the idea is a power system using a ball joint.

Research in wireless power transfer has been relatively recent, and we are now seeing it used in applications such phone and electric car chargers. Both of the examples, however, only utilize inductive charging. In our project, we will attempt to implement resonant inductive coupling to increase the range of operation of the joint. Furthermore, we will need to interface with the mechanical engineering group in order to design the mechanics surrounding the ball joint rather than rely solely on electronics. This project will focus on the unique application of a ball joint and resonant inductive coupling to create a proof of concept for wireless power transfer in relevant applications.

Cloud-controlled quadcopter

Anuraag Vankayala, Amrutha Vasili

Cloud-controlled quadcopter

Featured Project


To build a GPS-assisted, cloud-controlled quadcopter, for consumer-friendly aerial photography.


We will be building a quad from the frame up. The four motors will each have electronic speed controllers,to balance and handle control inputs received from an 8-bit microcontroller(AP),required for its flight. The firmware will be tweaked slightly to allow flight modes that our project specifically requires. A companion computer such as the Erle Brain will be connected to the AP and to the cloud(EC2). We will build a codebase for the flight controller to navigate the quad. This would involve sending messages as per the MAVLink spec for sUAS between the companion computer and the AP to poll sensor data , voltage information , etc. The companion computer will also talk to the cloud via a UDP port to receive requests and process them via our code. Users make requests for media capture via a phone app that talks to the cloud via an internet connection.

Why is it worth doing:

There is currently no consumer-friendly solution that provides or lets anyone capture aerial photographs of them/their family/a nearby event via a simple tap on a phone. In fact, present day off-the-shelf alternatives offer relatively expensive solutions that require owning and carrying bulky equipment such as the quads/remotes. Our idea allows for safe and responsible use of drones as our proposed solution is autonomous, has several safety features, is context aware(terrain information , no fly zones , NOTAMs , etc.) and integrates with the federal airspace seamlessly.

End Product:

Quads that are ready for the connected world and are capable to fly autonomously, from the user standpoint, and can perform maneuvers safely with a very simplistic UI for the common user. Specifically, quads which are deployed on user's demand, without the hassle of ownership.

Similar products and comparison:

Current solutions include RTF (ready to fly) quads such as the DJI Phantom and the Kickstarter project, Lily,that are heavily user-dependent or user-centric.The Phantom requires you to carry a bulky remote with multiple antennas. Moreover,the flight radius could be reduced by interference from nearby conditions.Lily requires the user to carry a tracking device on them. You can not have Lily shoot a subject that is not you. Lily can have a maximum altitude of 15 m above you and that is below the tree line,prone to crashes.

Our solution differs in several ways.Our solution intends to be location and/or event-centric. We propose that the users need not own quads and user can capture a moment with a phone.As long as any of the users are in the service area and the weather conditions are permissible, safety and knowledge of controlling the quad are all abstracted. The only question left to the user is what should be in the picture at a given time.

Project Videos