MOTE Antenna Project (Spring 2006)
Department of Computer Science and Engineering
Arizona State University
Undergraduate StudentEddie Raleigh (Edward.Raleigh@asu.edu)
Graduate MentorGianni Giorgetti (Gianni.Giorgetti@asu.edu)
The Brickyard Experience
When I first arrived at the BRICKYARD for an interview with Dr. Gupta regarding an available undergraduate position, I was a little nervous. I was amazed at how quick the interview process was and how friendly Dr. Gupta was. After being hired, it took about a week to process all of the paperwork before I started my first day on the job. My first assignment: Design a web page to get others (anyone ranging from children to 60 year olds) excited and interested about Computer Information Systems. I began working on this over winter break using FRONTPAGE with another undergraduate student, Robbie Sorenson. We spent about 7 days, putting in anywhere from 1-3 hours a day until it was COMPLETE. After we completed the site, I asked Dr. Gupta for more work and he set me up with a graduate student from Italy, Gianni Giorgetti.
With Gianni, I learned all about what a MOTE was and how to program them using Nes C and Java. Eventually we began running EXPERIMENTS with the motes, testing the effectiveness of a DIRECTIONAL ANTENNA. Also during this time, Dr. Gupta came back to me and asked for the site that Robbie and I made to be re-done as more interactive and professional. This time, I worked alone on the site with DREAMWEAVER, learning the basics of that program and spent a lot of time with image editing software to give the SITE the exact look and feel I wanted. Dr. Gupta appeared to like this second site more, but was still not satisfied. He showed me a variety of websites including www.nasa.gov and www.wikipedia.org stating he wanted something more professional but still engrossing such as these sites.
I am now spending my day time hours learning about Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) and Dreamweaver TEMPLATES in hopes of being able to create a site up to Dr. Gupta’s standards. I still spend some of my night hours, however working with Gianni on more directional antenna experiments with the Motes. I was also recently put on a new project known as STARGATE. This project deals with an internal network connected to an internal Stargate which communicates with an external Stargate that can reach external hosts. This is a very large project involving students from MIT, workers at Intel, and also some graduate students here at ASU. My part in the whole project is to work with the MOTES in the internal network to make sure they are communicating well with each other and the internal Stargate. In addition, I was asked to write this story and put it up on this site using the same design style as the rest of the site. After learning CSS, making this page was a breeze. Although it is questionable how much I have actually helped with research at the Brickyard, I have definitely learned a lot since I began working here. I now know what sort of work I could be doing as a graduate student and what researching is all about. Moreover, I have learned how to teach myself new programming languages such as Nes C (for the motes) and MATLAB (to make GRAPHS of the mote experiments).
Working with wireless Motes, I have learned that they can relay information from one to the next until the message reaches a base station. The base station receives messages from all of the motes and decodes them into useful information for a company. In example, a winery in Italy sets motes out in their vineyard to get up-to-date temperature, moisture, and light readings. If some of the vines are not getting enough light or if there is not enough moisture in the soil, then the end user will be able to see this from the base station and fix the problem before those grapes are turned into poor tasting wine.
One application of the Stargate program is for a company to immediately get information about what exactly is in stock at their company instead of waiting until the end of the day, or week, to find out. For this to happen, a RFID reader scans every item a company sells. The RFID then transmits this data via a MOTE to an internal Stargate which saves this data on flash memory. When the CEO of a company wants to find out exactly what is still in stock, he communicates with a MOTE which sends a message to the external Stargate, gets the data from the internal Stargate, and sends it back to the CEO. In this way, the CEO has access to the exact amount of any product in stock at any instant.
by: Eddie Raleigh
Last Updated: 27 March 2008