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Embedded Systems Laboratory

Embedded Systems refers to the development of computerized systems other than general purpose computers.  The term encompasses uncountable different devices; from a Fitbit® to a satellite control system.  Two of our courses specifically address this area of Electrical and Computer Engineering – ELC 411, Embedded Systems and ELC 343, Microcomputer Systems Laboratory.

Both courses make use of our fleet of Cypress PSoC 5LP Development Kits.  The PSoC 5LP is a state-of-the-art microcontroller that includes:

  • multiple analog-to-digital converters and analog-to-digital converters
  • a variety of interfaces for serial communication
  • high capacity on-chip RAM and Flash memory
  • timers, PWMs, interrupt controller
  • flexible programmable digital logic and pin assignments
  • 32-bit ARM Cortex-M3 RISC processor

Each of our Embedded Systems lab stations are outfitted with the National Instruments NI VB-8012 VirtualBench, which provides a 100 MHz oscilloscope, waveform generator, multimeter, logic analyzer and triple power supply.  The NI boxes are integrated with Windows PCs, which allow transfer of measurement data for further analysis and presentation.

Students study the theory and applications of microcontrollers and the techniques to interface them with external devices.  As a student, you will get hands-on experience that makes the classroom come to life:

  • Computer-aided microprocessor system development
  • Assembly and C language programming
  • Instruction types and addressing modes
  • Microcontroller assembly language and architecture
  • I/O peripheral programming and interfacing
  • Handshaking and interrupts
  • Real-time programming
  • High-level programming
  • Bus protocols
  • Embedded system timing analysis
  • Memory hierarchy
  • Peripherals
  • Parallel processing
  • Cost-performance tradeoffs
  • Timing considerations
  • Debugging techniques

Students can create innovative and interesting devices for their term projects using other stocked components including STMicroelectronics Discovery Boards, Cypress Bluetooth Low Energy Pioneer Kits, and various switches, LEDs, sensors and actuators.