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Teaching Enhancement via Small-Scale Affordable Labs (TESSAL) Center

Mission of TESSAL Center

Mission

The goal of the project, funded under an NSF CCLI grant, is to develop an infrastructure, including equipment and procedures, to have experiments distributed throughout the Electrical and Computer Engineering undergraduate curriculum, especially in courses that do not traditionally have labs.

Rationale

Experiments are vital to the understanding of basic principles of science and engineering, yet lab equipment is generally expensive and requires dedicated lab courses for running the experiments. This program takes advantage of recent embedded processor developments and existing low cost technologies to develop low-cost processor-based experiments that are portable enough for students to take home. For example, students can measure signals using an embedded processor and upload the data for further analysis on their own computers. The fidelity of the results obtained from existing low-cost embedded processor platforms and simple experiments is not at the level needed for typical lab-based courses, but it does suffice as a supplement to non lab-based courses. Eventually, embedded technology may replace the need for large, expensive laboratory equipment. As such, this project is envisioned to be at the forefront of a trend in lab experiments toward portable, embedded processor-based technologies with experiments that are distributed throughout the curriculum.

 

Last revised on Oct 28, 2010. Copyright © 2010 TESSAL