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Design Of An Electronic Muffler A Dsp Based Capstone Design 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

6.338.1 - 6.338.6

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Paper Authors

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John Watkins

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Carl Wick

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George Piper

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Svetlana Avramov-Zamurovic

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

Session 1320

Design of an Electronic Muffler - A DSP Based Capstone Design Project George Piper, John Watkins, Carl Wick, Svetlana Avramov-Zamurovic United States Naval Academy

Abstract Active control of noise has been an emerging technology for the past two decades. Active noise control (ANC) is an attractive means to achieve large amounts of noise reduction in a small package, particularly at low frequencies, where passive noise control may be impractical. While the concept of ANC has long been established, the technological means for implementing ANC have only recently become available. With the advent of high-speed digital signal processors (DSPs) and modern signal processing methods, ANC is now becoming a reality.

This paper presents an interesting undergraduate design project involving ANC. In their capstone engineering design course students designed and built a prototype ANC system that successfully demonstrated the concepts of an electronic muffler. The heart of the project centered on the popular Analog Devices’ SHARC DSP evaluation module (EVM). In this paper we will discuss ANC concepts and the electronic muffler, the students design project, and the pedagogical outcome.

1.0 Introduction The Systems Engineering curriculum at the U.S. Naval Academy is a four-year, undergraduate, ABET accredited, program, where students specialize in the interaction between mechanical, electrical, and computer systems. The curriculum focuses mainly on linear systems theory, feedback control, and mechatronics. An integral component of the Systems Engineering curriculum is its capstone design course. This course provides students with a comprehensive design experience bridging the gap between textbook problems and real life applications. Students work in teams to complete a semester-long design project. Each team must propose a project, prepare schedules and reports of their activities, and design, build, and test a prototype. One of the many challenges facing students in this course is the selection of a project that is meaningful and representative of their engineering discipline.

For nearly a decade automotive manufacturers have been experimenting with electronic mufflers for automobile exhaust systems [4] and their realization is near production. Some current electronic muffler concepts are based on active noise control (ANC) that uses destructive interference of sound waves to reduce unwanted noise. An additional advantage of an electronic muffler is the reduction of backpressure associated with conventional mufflers. Reduction of backpressure provides improved fuel economy in most gasoline engines.

A relevant on-going project in the Systems Engineering Dept has been the design of an interference-based electronic muffler. The Systems Engineering Department has had several teams of students over the past three years working on electronic muffler designs. Students find the design of an electronic muffler project intriguing because draws upon previous course work

Watkins, J., & Wick, C., & Piper, G., & Avramov-Zamurovic, S. (2001, June), Design Of An Electronic Muffler A Dsp Based Capstone Design Project Paper presented at 2001 Annual Conference, Albuquerque, New Mexico.

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