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Co-Creating a Cyber-Physical Systems Educational Module: A Project-Based Learning Approach

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Conference

ASEE-NE 2022

Location

Wentworth Institute of Technology, Massachusetts

Publication Date

April 22, 2022

Start Date

April 22, 2022

End Date

April 23, 2022

Page Count

13

DOI

10.18260/1-2--42159

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/42159

Download Count

330

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Paper Authors

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Grace Remillard University of Massachusetts Lowell

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Grace Remillard is a 1st-year graduate student who has a degree in electrical engineering. She is currently researching Cyber-Physical Systems (CPS). Her past research experience has been in acoustics and data analytics.

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Sarah Kamal University of Massachusetts, Lowell

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Sarah Kamal is a graduate student in computer engineering at UMass Lowell and she has a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering from the same institution. She is actively researching on Cyber-Physical Systems (CPS) and project based learning methods.

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Justin An University of the District of Columbia

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Justin An is a senior undergraduate student pursuing a Bachelor's degree in Mechanical Engineering. He is currently researching Cyber-Physical Systems (CPS). His past research experience has been in ultrasound and seismic acoustics.

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Charles Thompson PhD University of Massachusetts Lowell

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Charles Thompson is a Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, co-Director of the Center for Advanced Computation and Telecommunications and formerly Associate to the Dean for Research and Graduate Study at the UMASS Lowell. He is a graduate of NYU (EE: BS, MS) and MIT (Acoustics: Ph.D.).

In 1987 he joined the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at UMASS Lowell as its Analog Devices Career Development Professor. Dr. Thompson has served on the executive boards of the Cooperative Research Fellowship program of Bell Laboratories (1991-1999) and the ATT Labs Fellowship Program (1996-2006).

His awards include the West Babylon Alumni Hall of Fame; U.S. Presidential Award for Excellence in Mentoring; Tau Beta Pi Eminent Engineer; James E. Blackwell Scholar; ATT Bell Laboratories Cooperative Research Fellowship. He is a Fellow of the Acoustical Society of America and is cited for his fundamental contributions to theoretical and computational acoustics. He is a senior member of IEEE, and a member of the American Physical Society and Sigma Xi. He has published research in acoustics, system theory, and fluid mechanics.

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Kavitha Chandra University of Massachusetts Lowell

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Kavitha Chandra is the Associate Dean for Undergraduate Programs and Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering in the Francis College of Engineering at the University of Massachusetts Lowell. She directs the Research, Academics and Mentoring Pathways (RAMP) to Success program that aims to establish successful pathways to graduate school and interdisciplinary careers for new undergraduate students. Dr. Chandra’s research interests include design of data-driven stochastic models for applications in acoustics, communication networks and predictive analytics in education.

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Abstract

This research addresses the design of an educational module that supports experiential learning of the concepts governing cyber-physical systems (CPS). Such systems have become integral in the Industry 4.0 revolution and require an interdisciplinary viewpoint in their design, implementation, and analysis. A CPS interconnects physical systems, sensors, and computational engines through a communications network to support monitoring and decision-making functions that maintain a desired performance of the physical system. They entail many of the fundamental topics in engineering education such as differential equations, dynamics, signals and systems and feedback control but also require an understanding of how data-driven decision making takes place. In this work, a team of graduate and undergraduate students collaborate with faculty and experts from industry to co-create an educational module on CPS that will be integrated in selected engineering courses. A project-based learning approach is implemented that begins with observations of a simple dynamic system followed by a phase of posing questions to understand the behavior of the states of the system. The system considered is a regular tape measure that is fixed at one end and its deployment length incrementally increased until the system transitions from an equilibrium to a buckled state. This problem has relevance to more complex applications such as the stability of deployable structures used in satellites. These structures are designed to be compactly packed during launch but structurally designed to deploy with light-weight flexible material. The material properties can render the system to buckle under the influence of external forces. When coupled with a sensing system and a network that transmits this data to a computing system, it allows action to be taken to maintain functionality of the system. In this experiment the properties of the tape measure such as projected length, width, curvature, and mass applied on the tape measure are recorded and measurable system variables are assessed. A simulation of the dynamical system yields a time-series of relevant data that is applied to predict the state of the system and the likelihood that it may buckle. The project based learning and co-creation model supports students from both STEM and non-STEM disciplines to become engaged in the design and analysis of future technology, learn how to communicate with each other and with experts and non-experts in the field and contribute to a more inclusive design of interdisciplinary educational modules.

Remillard, G., & Kamal, S., & An, J., & Thompson, C., & Chandra, K. (2022, April), Co-Creating a Cyber-Physical Systems Educational Module: A Project-Based Learning Approach Paper presented at ASEE-NE 2022, Wentworth Institute of Technology, Massachusetts. 10.18260/1-2--42159

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