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From Automatic Dog Feeders to Paintball Sentries: Designing Intelligent Machines

The secret inventor comes out in many students who take Mechatronics, ECE 4734, a design-project-based course taught jointly by ECE and ME.

ECE students typically partner with an ME student to design and build an intelligent machine of their choosing. Since the course was started in 1996, the hundreds of inventions have included a pill sorter, an automatic dog feeder, a motion-sensitive paintball sentry, a windshield defogger and many others.

The course delves into electromechanical issues at the interface of EE and ME, including sensors, actuators, interfaces, AC/DC converters, and microcontrollers.

For indepth descriptions of the course and projects, please see the following articles:

    The VT Mechatronics Circuit Board.

    A Mechatronics pill dispenser.
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    Last updated: Thu, Oct 23, 2003