Design and Innovation Day 2024: Winners, Projects, and Photos

Thank you to everyone who attended Design and Innovation Day! Congratulations to all of the groups on your hardwork and effort for this year’s capstone projects!

The capstone design project is a major component of the ECE engineering curriculum where students work in teams of four to six students to design a product/service of significance and to solve an open-ended problem in electrical and computer engineering.

Best Video Winners

The best video awards recognize exceptional capstone teams and their ability to communicate their technical design challenge and project’s impact to a general audience.  A short list of videos is selected by the Capstone students with the final winners selected by a panel of judges representing diverse perspectives.

First Place- TL-32: Use of Frequency Modulated Continuous Wavelength Radar (FMCW) to Detect Heart Rate, Respiratory Rate of Patients

Project Client: Aberrant Designs Inc.

Project Description: Emergency departments see significant morbidity and mortality each year from unrecognized changes in patient vital signs. A patient’s condition can deteriorate after they are first admitted; this is indicated by changes in heart and respiratory rate, which are difficult to notice visually.

Patients in hospital seclusion rooms are especially at risk, since traditional wired health monitors cannot be used. Despite having camera and in-person examinations to assess the patients, accurately distinguishing between a sleeping patient lying in bed and one experiencing distress – and quickly intervening to prevent life-threatening or long-term harm – remains a critical challenge.

Our solution uses a Frequency Modulated Continuous Wave (FMCW) Radar to monitor the heart and respiratory rate of a patient in a seclusion room in a non-invasive manner. FMCW Radar allows us to measure the movement of a patient’s chest with sub-millimeter precision, without the need for wires and contact sensors.

Our product processes the radar data in real-time; this includes signal processing algorithms to denoise and reconstruct patient vital signals, making our system more tolerant to patient movement and applicable to realistic conditions. We send the measured heart and respiratory rate values to a web-based GUI, allowing health workers or nurses to monitor multiple patient vital rates remotely. Additionally, the GUI creates audio and visual alerts when patient vitals are in a dangerous range, improving patient outcomes. 

Second Place- AI-70: Monitoring and Control System for C-Quester Carbon Capture

Project Client: C-Quester, Inc.

Project Description: The iCapture addresses the critical need for cost-effective and efficient data monitoring and control systems (MCS) in carbon capture operations. It is capable of communicating with various sensor signals, collecting their data, and outputting the sensor data to an online API. Developed in collaboration with Mitico, a company that offers accessible carbon capture technology and services, iCapture seamlessly integrates with their existing sensor networks, providing real-time insights into crucial parameters of their carbon capture system. The iCapture’s automatic sensor configuration, range communication of beyond 100ft, error handling for sensor disconnection or malfunction, and LCD display for displaying error notifications ensure seamless operation and scalability, all while maintaining affordability at under $500. By lowering the cost and complexity of MCS, we enable Mitico to deliver more accessible and sustainable carbon capture solutions, furthering their mission to combat climate change and promote environmental stewardship.

Third Place- TL-30: Mapping Below the Forest Canopy Software

Project Client: Korotu Technology Inc.

Project Description: The health of forests worldwide is fast deteriorating due to increases in deforestation and climate change. In order to make sound planning and management decisions, we must first better understand the present condition of our forests. Tree counts, biodiversity counts, growth stages, and other inventory data all provide extensive information on the state of our environment, yet much of this data is hidden beneath the forest canopy.

Today, traditional forest surveying techniques often involve deploying teams of skilled workers to collect data samples in remote locations, costing substantial time and resources. Expenses are estimated to average around $10,000 per hectare. While satellites and drones may provide information on forest conditions above the canopy, they are currently unable to gather data on the state of trees growing underneath.

To address these challenges, we have partnered with Korotu Technology Inc. to create ForestFolio, a mobile application that aims to reduce the financial and time burdens of data collection, increase the quality and precision of data samples, and make forest surveys more accessible to smaller groups interested in gathering forest data. 

ForestFolio combines the various tools needed for traditional surveying into one device by making use of the camera, LiDAR sensor, gyroscope, and accelerometer on a mobile device. The application guides the user through the data collection process for the location, height, diameter, and species of each tree within a fixed-area forest plot.. 

First, the user is required to walk around the plot while holding up their mobile device to scan their surroundings and generate a map of detected trees. At this step, the diameter of each tree is extracted through machine learning algorithms, eliminating the need for individual tree diameter measurements. 

The generated map helps the user keep track of their own position within the plot and the location of each tree. When the user navigates to a tree, they first receive step-by-step guidance on measuring its height. They then input additional data such as the tree species and relevant notes. Once all trees have been completed within the plot, the application waits for a stable Internet connection before uploading the completed plot to a server. There, the data is further analyzed and presented to the user via a website interface, with the option to export the data as a spreadsheet file.

In addition to the mobile application, data collected through other means such as via a drone with a mounted LiDAR sensor can also be analyzed by ForestFolio. This data simply needs to be uploaded to a website interface which will process it and return valuable tree inventory data.

ForestFolio not only eliminates the need for external forest survey tools, but also facilitates the data collection process so that untrained users can quickly begin gathering accurate, high-quality data beneath the forest canopy. 

Kamran Alam:

Zoeb Gaurani:

Harman Sihota:

Yitong Tang:

Manvir Dhami:

Vicky Chen:

Explore the 2024 Capstone Projects

Emerging Technologies and Innovations

Industrial Automation and Processes

Environmental Monitoring and Sustainability

Healthcare and Medical Devices

Transportation and Mobility Solutions

Artificial Intelligence and Software Systems

Design and Innovation Day Photo Gallery