It's that time. You've taken exams, passed coursework, and made it to the final year of an electrical engineering degree program. Now you have to choose a final project to cap off your major. Fortunately, this is not as daunting as it might feel at first. There are hundreds, even thousands, of ideas for college-level projects that have never been done before.
This is an emerging field which uses digital signal processing (DSP) technology to analyze biological data. Common uses include fingerprint, iris, and facial scans used for security systems. Digital signal processing technology received a shot in the arm with the development of single-processor technology, which helps speed up processing power. Final projects may include the design of such a processor, or of an entire biometrics-based DSP security system.
Even with the expansion of digital technology, radio and wireless transmission has never been more important. Transmitters, wireless Internet and bluetooth technology are revolutionizing how people communicate and transmit information. One interesting and fun project for final-year engineering students is to build a 100 Watt FM transmitter. Another might to be design and implement long-range bluetooth technology, or to design and develop a network based entirely on bluetooth technology.
Both voice recording and voice recognition technology continue expand in scope and usage. There are many potential final-year projects in this area of electronics and electrical engineering. Students can create a voice recorder using digital technology, such as a PIC or a microcontroller and ADC. Another project would be to create a telephone application for the deaf. The application would convert voice messages from one end into text messages at the other. Students might also design a security system for buildings, cars, and other property based on voice recognition technology.
More and more houses are being built with electronic meters to measure gas, water, and electricity. There are several advantages to using electronic meters rather than traditional mechanical ones, including better reliability, accuracy, automated meter reading, and so on. A final-year project for electrical engineering students would be to compare these two kinds of meters, or to compare the various electronic meters now available. Students may even want to design their own meters for specific needs.
Computers and microprocessors have come to revolutionize transportation technology. Cars, planes, boats, and trains are largely controlled by microprocessors. However, they have not yet been implemented on larger scales, putting entire systems under the control of a computer. One possible project for electrical engineering students could be the design of a microprocessor-based railway system. This might also be applied to other electronically-linked transportation systems, such as subways, monorails, and even amusement parks.
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