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Embedded System Education Curriculum Using TI SimpleLink Microcontrollers in Engineering Technology

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2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access


Virtual On line

Publication Date

June 22, 2020

Start Date

June 22, 2020

End Date

June 26, 2021

Conference Session

Computers in Education Division Technical Session 3: Digital Learning Part I

Tagged Division

Computers in Education

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Byul Hur Texas A&M University

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Dr. B. Hur received his B.S. degree in Electronics Engineering from Yonsei University, in Seoul, Korea, in 2000, and his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Electrical and Computer Engineering from the University of Florida, Gainesville, FL, USA, in 2007 and 2011, respectively. In 2017, he joined the faculty of Texas A&M University, College Station, TX. USA, where he is currently an Assistant Professor. He worked as a postdoctoral associate from 2011 to 2016 at the University Florida previously. His research interests include Mixed-signal/RF circuit design and testing, measurement automation, environmental & biomedical data measurement, and educational robotics development.

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Ana Elisa P. Goulart Texas A&M University

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Ana Elisa Goulart received a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from the Federal School of Engineering of Itajuba (EFEI), in Brazil. While working in the industry, she received a M. Sc. degree in Information Systems Management from the Pontificial Catholic University of Campinas, in 1997. She moved to the United States in 1997 where she earned a M. Sc. in Computer Engineering at North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC; followed by a Ph.D. in Electrical and Computer Engineering at Georgia Tech, Atlanta, GA, in 2005. She is currently an Associate Professor in the Electronics Systems Engineering Technology program at Texas A&M University, in College Station, TX. Her research interests include protocols for real-time voice and video communications and their performance, IP-based emergency communications, last-mile communication links for the SmartGrid, rural telecommunications, and behavior-driven development.

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Logan Porter Texas A&M University Orcid 16x16

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Nripendra Sarker Texas A&M University


Mike Willey Texas A&M University

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Mr. Willey has been an active designer of embedded systems since 1978. He is co-owner of an outsource product development company, Paragon Innovations, Inc., in Richardson, Texas where he serves as Chief Technical Officer.

Mr. Willey also is a member of the engineering faculty at Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas. He teaches Embedded Real Time Operating systems and the final stage of the Capstone experience in Electronic Systems Engineering Technology.

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In Engineering Technology programs, it is typical to find that microcontroller and embedded system education is selected as one of the key areas. This is relevant to the increased demands in a shorter and faster paced research and development in electronics systems design. In order to meet the functional requirements for the electronics systems, one of the typical choices is to use a general-purpose microcontroller, sensors, and communication modules. In embedded system education, the topics related to these components can be covered. The Engineering Technology program at Texas A&M University has been educating students through embedded C programming, microcontroller architecture, and embedded system software courses. The program also offers a technical elective on an embedded real time software development course and a graduate level intelligent embedded system design course. Various models of Texas Instruments (TI) microcontrollers have been previously used in the courses in the embedded system integration track. However, from the Fall of 2019, an MSP432 microcontroller (MCU) was selected and has been used as a common platform throughout the majority of the embedded system courses. An MSP432 MCU has an ARM Cortex M4F core and MSP430 compatible peripherals. Students learn about the register level C programming, microcontroller architecture, and ARM assembly language programming skills and knowledge. They also learn about high level of programming using TI driver library and TI real-time operating system (RTOS) in this embedded system integration track. An MSP432 MCU is one of the SimpleLink family platforms. The SimpleLink family platforms make the development cycle faster and easier to meet the various requirements. The SimpleLink family platforms are currently active microcontrollers and microprocessors. In the Engineering Technology at Texas A&M University, the courses in the embedded system integration track have adopted an MSP432 MCU as a common platform. Students can choose to use other SimpleLink platforms for their capstone projects because their knowledge is still relevant and there is a high chance of reusing their code within the SimpleLink family platforms. This paper presents the details of the embedded system track and this transitional progress and students’ learning throughout this embedded system course curriculum for Fall of 2019 and Spring 2020.

Hur, B., & Goulart, A. E. P., & Porter, L., & Sarker, N., & Willey, M. (2020, June), Embedded System Education Curriculum Using TI SimpleLink Microcontrollers in Engineering Technology Paper presented at 2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual On line . 10.18260/1-2--34518

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