Salt Lake City, Utah
June 20, 2004
June 20, 2004
June 23, 2004
9.1103.1 - 9.1103.10
Software and Hardware for Web-based Education
Carl Steidley and Rafic Bachnak Department of Computing and Mathematical Sciences Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi
Institutions of higher education are actively seeking new methods to complement their science and engineering distance education programs with online experimentation. This paper describes the design and development of a virtual laboratory environment that allows students to perform laboratory experiments from remote locations through a web browser. A front panel in LabVIEW displays the results and allows storage of acquired data for later processing. A digital camera that provides real-time pictures of the monitored equipment is part of the system configuration.
Laboratory experiments in science and engineering courses play a significant role in supporting the learning process. With the increased demand for distance education, however, institutions are looking for methods that offer their students the opportunity to perform experiments through virtual laboratories [1, 4]. As a result, a number of web- based systems that rely on a variety of software development programs have been developed. Most software programs, however, make developing, maintaining, and upgrading laboratory experiments very expensive and a time consuming process.
A distance laboratory system has to provide efficient user operations, machine and platform independence, secure operations, graphical user interface capabilities, high processing bandwidth, and low cost maintenance. These factors and others have been affecting the implementation of distance education [5-7]. The ability to monitor and control processes from remote locations makes proper and timely analysis possible. Advances in networking technologies and development of measurement hardware and software has turned PCs into platforms capable of continuous remote monitoring using the Internet. A software program that facilitates the developments of such applications is LabVIEW [8-10]. LabVIEW allows embedding a user on a web page with access to the system. Access can be granted using security features available through the software. Features such as password protection can prevent private information from being viewed by the general public. This paper describes the design and implementation of a virtual laboratory that enables engineering technology students at Texas A&M University- Corpus Christi (A&M-CC) to perform laboratory experiments online using a web browser. The system uses LabVIEW to provide data acquisition, storage, and processing capabilities and real-time viewing of the laboratory environment using a digital camera.
Proceedings of the 2004 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright 2004, American Society for Engineering Education
Steidley, C., & Bachnak, R. (2004, June), Software And Hardware For Web Based Education Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah. https://peer.asee.org/13261
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