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Senior Project Design: A Smart Pantry System

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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

ETD Capstone Projects

Tagged Division

Engineering Technology

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Paper Authors


Dominik Sobota DeVry University, Addison

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Dominik Sobota is a student at DeVry University, Addison, IL, pursuing his BSEET degree. While attending DeVry University, Addison and Purdue University, West Lafayette, Dominik has completed a number of technical projects that involved power supply design; control systems design using HC9S12C32, TI TIVA, and Raspberry Pi 3. He is proficient in a number of software languages and application programs: Assembly Language, VHDL, C; C++, JAVA, PYTHON, HTML, LINUX and SQL, Multisim, OrCad/PSice, Energia, Quartus II, Eclipse, Visual Studio, Android Studio; CodeWarrior and PyChem. For his senior design project, Dominik worked in a team to design a SMART Pantry which utilizes a Raspberry Pi 3 and python application to keep a real-time track of the inventory. Dominik has gained valuable experience, in form of product development and testing, while doing his Internship at Contemporary Controls.

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Spencer William Karlovits DeVry University

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Spencer Karlovits is a graduate of DeVry University's Electronic Engineering Technology program. He currently works as a technician wiring and manufacturing automated industrial control systems for roadside enclosures, including lighting controllers, traffic monitoring, and roadside surveillance. Spencer has taken a number of classes from Michigan Technological University where he studied Electrical Engineering Technology and Audio Production and Technology. Courses included programmable logic controllers, fundamental circuit’s courses, digital circuits, special electronic devices, data communications, transducer theory, motor control and power systems, and an industrial robotics course. Some achievements made while at Michigan Tech include speaker design with passive crossover filter implementation, frequency and amplitude modulation transmitter and receiver design and implementation, programming field programmable gate arrays in VHDL language, motor control logic structures, and a certification through FANUC in handling tool and operation programming.
Spencer transferred to DeVry University to complete his degree in Electronics Engineering Technology.

While at DeVry, Spencer expanded his programming skills by learning C++, Java, C (for specific TI microcontroller programming), assembly code (for TI MSP 432), and Python. He spent considerable time working on programming a variety of microcontrollers including Arduino, Raspberry Pi, TI MSP 432, and TI TM4C123G. With this knowledge, Spencer designed an automated microcontroller controlled car with proximity – object detection as well as auxiliary functions, such as automatic lighting control and temperature control. Additionally, this knowledge fueled the design behind his senior design project which utilizes a Raspberry Pi and high torque stepper motor to implement an automated pantry system with live-status inventory tracking. Other achievements at DeVry include designing and implementing a simple calculator with and LCD screen, momentary pushbuttons, and the MSP 432, designing and implementing motor control structures with ladder logic, and a significant amount of work with various transducers, the associated analog to digital conversion, and signal processing for a variety of automated functions. Spencer intends to continue pursuing a field within the scope of industrial automated control systems.

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Ahmed S. Khan DeVry University, Addison Orcid 16x16

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Dr. Ahmed S. Khan is a Senior Professor in the College of Engineering and Information Sciences at DeVry University, Addison, Illinois. Dr. Khan has more than thirty-two years of experience in research, instruction, curricula design and development, program evaluation and accreditation, management and supervision.

Dr. Khan received an MSEE from Michigan Technological University, an MBA from Keller Graduate School of Management, and his Ph.D. from Colorado State University. His research interests are in the areas of Nanotechnology, Fiber Optic Communications, Faculty Development, and Social and Ethical Implications of Technology. He is the author of many educational papers and presentations. He has authored/coauthored the following books:

• Nanotechnology: Ethical and Social Implications (2012)
• Technology and Society: Issues for the 21st Century and Beyond 3E, (2008)
• The Telecommunications Fact Book and Illustrated Dictionary 2E (2006)
• Fiber Optic Communication: An Applied Approach, Prentice Hall, N.J. (2002)
• Technology and Society: A Bridge to the 21st Century (2002)
• Technology and Society: Crossroads to the 21st Century (1996)
• Technology and Society: A Spectrum of Issues for the 21st Century (1994)
• The Telecommunications Fact Book and Illustrated Dictionary (1992)

Dr. Khan is a senior member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineering (IEEE), and a member of American Society of Engineering Education (ASEE), and has been listed in Who’s Who among America’s Teachers. Dr. Khan also serves as a program evaluator for the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET).

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This paper describes a senior design project in the scope of technical design and implementation of a concept incorporating an automated inventory selection system based on scanned items through the use of a user interface. The system, known as Smart Pantry, is designed to help average consumers organize purchased pantry items both by physical location and itemized inventory as well as purchase routine groceries more efficiently. Through incorporating elements of software integration in the user interface and a motor control structure, the development of this project encompasses a wide range of the team members’ acquired skills. The unit allows a user to scan an item and add it to a specific physical location which is then stored in a database on the microcontroller. When retrieving said item, the user simply makes a selection on the generated list on the touch screen display causing the motor to drive the carousel to the location in which the item is stored. The data is stored in an SQL database which is also available on a developed smartphone application to facilitate the organization factor for the end user. The automated portion expands upon techniques for motor control systems. In this project, a driven stepper motor is used while providing live feedback to the microcontroller which ultimately optimizes the precision of the rotation resulting in accurate alignment for item retrieval. While all three students are EET majors at <School Name Redacted>, concepts involved in software application development as well as database management were widely expanded upon within the development of this project. The specific focus of this paper is to best describe the overall methodology in this product’s development from the perspective of technical design and prototype development. The papers describes in detail the structured approach in combining hardware with software processes, constructing relevant solutions to the technical problems encountered, and the development, testing and integration of a functional prototype.

Sobota, D., & Karlovits, S. W., & Khan, A. S. (2017, June), Senior Project Design: A Smart Pantry System Paper presented at 2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Columbus, Ohio. 10.18260/1-2--28820

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