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An Interactive Web Based Analog Grade Computer As An Electrical Circuits Capstone Project

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2001 Annual Conference


Albuquerque, New Mexico

Publication Date

June 24, 2001

Start Date

June 24, 2001

End Date

June 27, 2001



Page Count


Page Numbers

6.171.1 - 6.171.15

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Paper Authors

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Kevin Davis

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Frank Severance

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Damon Miller

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 2793

An Interactive Web-Based Analog Grade Computer as an Electrical Circuits Capstone Lab Project

Kevin Davis, Damon Miller and Frank Severance Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

Western Michigan University


This paper describes the use of an interactive web-based circuit demonstration system to provide a mid-semester superposition capstone experience for electrical circuit fundamentals lab students. The particular circuit to be interactively demonstrated is a simple electronic artificial neural network which is used to compute individual and class average grades in our Electrical and Computer Engineering 100 Fundamentals of Circuits course. This provides a simple example of analog computing using a summing circuit. The analog grade computer is more fully described in a 1999 ASEE North Central Section Spring Conference paper by two of the authors of this paper entitled: "Neural Networks as a Source of Introductory Electrical Circuit Analysis Problems." The interactive system is based on a recently developed LabVIEW application for web-based circuit demonstrations which was subsequently enhanced to add distributed control of the circuit of interest. The resulting circuit demonstration emphasizes the key concepts of voltage division, superposition, circuit loading, and the principle of duality.

I. Introduction

We perennially update our fundamentals of electrical circuits course for non-majors (ECE 100). There are multiple dimensions of opportunities for updating what would otherwise could become rather prosaic – if not for the students then at least for the instructor. Regardless of whatever updates are selected we need to remain faithful to introducing electrical circuits in a manner such that the students gain competence in circuit analysis using fundamental circuit laws.

Proceedings of the 2001 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright  2001, American Society for Engineering Education

Davis, K., & Severance, F., & Miller, D. (2001, June), An Interactive Web Based Analog Grade Computer As An Electrical Circuits Capstone Project Paper presented at 2001 Annual Conference, Albuquerque, New Mexico.

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