TITLE

Development of a Low-cost, Portable Hardware Platform to Support Hands-on Learning in the Teaching of Control and Systems Theory

AUTHOR(S)
Taylor, B.; Eastwood, P.; Jones, B. Ll.
PUB. DATE
July 2014
SOURCE
Engineering Education;Jul2014, Vol. 9 Issue 1, p62
SOURCE TYPE
Academic Journal
DOC. TYPE
Article
ABSTRACT
This paper describes the development of a hardware platform designed to support the teaching of a variety of systems engineering concepts to students at all stages of the curriculum. From concept, the hardware was designed to be low-cost, portable and robust allowing sufficient numbers of hardware units to be acquired. This enabled each student on the course to be loaned their own piece of equipment, either to work with in class or for use as a 'take home lab'. This provided the students with a more flexible, experimental based learning experience than traditional classroom based teaching. The hardware platform consisted of a miniature three degrees-of freedom helicopter that is interfaced to a personal computer (PC) via a National Instruments myDAQ data acquisition module. This was housed in a small, foam-lined carrying case for portability. Details of the course and assessment, based around the hardware platform, are presented, along with feedback received from the students. This feedback was from the first run of a new MSc course in the spring semester of 2013, and indicated that the new hardware was received positively with the students appreciating the hands-on nature of the teaching it provided.
ACCESSION #
97141071

 

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