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An Exercise in High-School Engagement: Making a Demo Jammer for a Military Applications Course

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2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Columbus, Ohio

Publication Date

June 24, 2017

Start Date

June 24, 2017

End Date

June 28, 2017

Conference Session

Military and Veterans Constituent Committee Division Technical Session 1

Tagged Division

Military and Veterans

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Paper Authors


Gene L. Harding Purdue Polytechnic Institute

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GENE L. HARDING is an associate professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering Technology at Purdue University, where he has taught since 2003. He has three years of industrial experience with Agilent Technologies, 28 years of combined active and reserve service in the United States Air Force, holds an MSEE from Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology, and is a licensed professional engineer.

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Frank Joseph Rossi Jr. Trinity School at Greenlawn

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A current high school junior, Frank Rossi attends Trinity School at Greenlawn, where he pursues a classical education. Outside of the classroom, Frank is also an avid athlete, taking part in both track and soccer. He resides in South Bend, Indiana.

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Michael R. Holtz Purdue Polytechnic Institute

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MICHAEL R. HOLTZ is a Lab Technician at Purdue Polytechnic in South Bend Indiana where he has worked since 2008. He has over 22 years of working experience in the field of Electronic Technology with a strong background in Mechanical Technology as well. He also holds two Bachelor of Science degrees in Electronic Technology from Indiana State University and General Studies in Science and Math from Indiana University.

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One of the authors teaches an Electrical Engineering Technology course in Military RF Electronic Applications. In the lab portion of the course, students construct a mock radio controlled improvised explosive device (RCIED) using the radio from an old garage door opener, then spend the rest of the semester designing, building, testing, and demonstrating a jammer that uses radio frequency energy to defeat the mock RCIED. (It should be noted that it uses a beeper or buzzer in place of explosives.) The other authors are the site technician (and PCB layout guru) and a local high school student who was interested in learning more about both electronics and military applications.

The ultimate goal of the Jammer Project is to create a functional set of equipment that includes both a mock RCIED and jammer. They are planned to be used for demo purposes at high school recruiting activities.

This paper covers the first two phases of the Jammer Project: creating a mock RCIED and the circuit to control the jammer. It begins with a short description of the course in which the lab is taught, how the link to high school students came about, plus some background information on military applications and what the military terms “electronic warfare”. Then it describes the design and construction of both devices, followed by the student’s thoughts on his experience with the project. The last two sections describe parts of the project that are yet to come, the radio frequency amplifier and antenna, along with some lessons learned.

Harding, G. L., & Rossi, F. J., & Holtz, M. R. (2017, June), An Exercise in High-School Engagement: Making a Demo Jammer for a Military Applications Course Paper presented at 2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Columbus, Ohio. 10.18260/1-2--27559

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