Premier Courseware of 2001
Demonstrations in Signals, Systems and Control was announced as the Premier Courseware of 2001 at the 2001 ASEE/IEEE Frontiers in Education Conference in Reno, NV.
Demonstrations in Signals, Systems and Control
Wilson J. Rugh, et al., Johns Hopkins University
Three modules are recognized as the Premier Courseware of 2001: Joy of Convolution (Discrete Time) with Steve Crutchfield, Interactive Lecture Module: Harmonic Phasors and Fourier Series with Hsi Chen Lee, and Sense and Sensitivities with Seth Kahn.Demonstrations in Signals, Systems and Control is a set of web-based modules that supplements instruction through learning both inside and outside the engineering classroom. The website contains numerous Java applets covering a wide range of concepts in signals, systems and control. These well designed modules provide audio introductions to topics, interactive exercises and quizzes to assess learning. The modules focus on concepts that are difficult to express, such as convolution, and those that are difficult to present, such as closed loop bandwidth. Interactive simulations serve to heighten understanding and provide meaningful examples. Demonstrations in Signals, Systems and Control is easily adaptable for use in classrooms everywhere.
In Hot Water: A Cooling Tower Case Study
Justin Cochran, P.K. Raju and Chetan S. Sankar, Auburn University
In Hot Water merges engineering fundamentals with business analysis, providing students with a real world case study. This study investigates alternatives for enhancing cooling tower performance at Plant Vogtle, a Southern Nuclear generating facility. The cooling tower performance history is presented effectively through video interviews with plant personnel and audio dialogue among key players in the decision making process. Students incorporate knowledge of such engineering topics as heat transfer, thermodynamics, fluid mechanics, and thermal systems design with business subjects such as risk management, project management and effective decision making to construct and defend proposed solutions. Ultimately, In Hot Water demonstrates how decisions, based in engineering theory, have serious financial and operational implications.
Dan Jensen, United States Air Force Academy, John Wood, Colorado State University and Dave Dimas, MSC Software
Vis-MOM is a visually appealing package that presents a summary of important mechanics of materials concepts. It is particularly suited to being used by an instructor during lectures to provide concise summaries of governing equations and definitions of terms, for associating the theory with the real world situations through photographs, video clips and animations, and providing sample calculations and design problems that can be reviewed in class. The navigation and layout is relatively easy to use and students can utilize the courseware as a supplement to the lecture once it has been reviewed and concepts explained. There is good documentation for faculty who choose to adopt the package. One nice feature is the tensile test.
DMichael J. Safoutin, University of Washington
The Virtual Car prototyping environment is a good tool to use to introduce students to the typical engineering design process. It provides students with a design problem with reasonable constraints and then assists them in developing the design from simulation through prototype fabrication. Students will likely come away from the experience having had fun while learning some important concepts in physics, mathematics and basic engineering. Students can also work in teams while building their project, allowing them to gain experience in collaborative learning. A teacher’s manual is useful to instructors attempting to use the tool in their learning environment. The manual contains a description of the learning goals and objectives and provides example assessment instruments to determine a class’s progress in attaining these.
The tool introduces students to the important area of rapid prototyping and teaches them some very useful real-word skills. For example, after design, simulation, and some testing, students are encouraged and assisted in producing their own physical model of the car. They can test it against the simulation and compare the actual results with the predicted results.
About the Premier Award
The Premier Award for Excellence in Engineering Education Courseware was developed by NEEDS—A Digital Library for Engineering Education, John Wiley & Sons, Inc., and the Synthesis Coalition to recognize high-quality, non-commercial courseware designed to enhance engineering education.