Biomedical Engineering Students Present Projects at Conference

Joshua Harper (center) and Zachary DiMartino (right) present their project on Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC).

Working in teams, URI biomedical engineering students in the capstone design class have collaborated on projects related to neuroengineering, assistive technology, rehabilitation engineering, physiological measurements, biomedical imaging, and clinical engineering.

Coordinated by Professor Ying Sun, the senior capstone course is jointly taught by Adjunct Professors Eugene Chabot, Jiang Wu, and Jordan Anderson, from a hospital and industry.

The students presented their projects at the 44th Northeast Bioengineering Conference at Drexel University in Philadelphia on March 28. Each of the nineteen URI teams did a poster presentation and demonstrated their working prototypes. They also discussed their projects and exchanged ideas with faculty and students from peer institutions.

“The URI projects were well received and stood out with their functional and portable devices,” said Sun. “The students also benefited from learning about other capstone design projects in different areas of bioengineering.”

“Throughout the capstone design process, I worked side-by-side with industrial and clinical professionals and applied what I learned over the past four years to solve a contemporary, real-world problem,” said Ryan Ivone, from Scituate, RI. “The conference was an invaluable experience that helped me realize my capabilities and booster my confidence.”

“Being able to share our work and get input from other students and professionals in the biomedical engineering community was a great culmination of our capstone project,” said Rachel Bellisle, from Exeter, RI.

Timothy O’Connor, from Needham, Mass., enjoyed learning what biomedical engineering students from other universities were working on.

“The conference was an unforgettable opportunity to compare and contrast our work with other renown biomedical engineering programs,” O’Connor said. “I particularly enjoyed the ability to interact with programs that concentrate on other aspects of biomedical engineering, such as drug delivery and tissue engineering.”

Here were the 19 projects and teams.

  1. biomedical engineering conference
    From left: Juan Malvar, Zachary Brown, and Austin Ramos present their transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) device.

    Biofeedback: Develop a microprocessor frontend for measuring ECG and temperature and an Android app that implements a biofeedback protocol for controlling emotion dysregulation.
    Team: Elaine Joyce, Samantha Provencher, Zachary Silveira (in collaboration with Seven Hills health and human services)

  2. AAC: Develop an EMG based adaptive switch and an Android app that provides Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) using the built-in Android accessibility and text-to-speech functions.
    Team: Joshua Harper, Zachary DiMartino (in collaboration with Seven Hills health and human services)
  3. ModelHouse: Design a 16:1 scale accessible model house for demonstrating home modifications and various assistive technologies such as wheelchair lifter and accessible kitchen counter for persons with limited mobilities.
    Team: Ahmaad Randall, Amy Harmon, Alexis Welch (in collaboration with Ocean State Center for Independent Living)
  4. MagnetPeutics: Develop a light-weight headwear for transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) rehabilitation treatments that uses a novel design to achieve fast and quiet rotation of permanent magnets.
    Team: Austin Ramos, Zachary Brown, Juan Malvar (in collaboration with Dr. Brian Silver of UMass Medical School)
  5. PulseSim: Intended for teaching pulse diagnosis in traditional Chinese medicine, develop a simulator that can represent blood vessel width in addition to depth, strength, rhythm, length, and propagation.
    Team: Mackenzie Mitchell, Jake Morris, Ian Kanterman (in collaboration with veterinarian Dr. Mona Boudreaux)
  6. PainDetect: Develop a personalized pain detector based on a real-time image processing algorithm implemented on an Android smart phone or tablet.
    Team: Rachel Bellisle, Jessika Decker, John McLinden (in collaboration with Seven Hills health and human services)
  7. IRsensor: Develop a laser-guided IR sensor with temperature display and physiological signals such as breathing rate on an OLED screen to be integrated into a firefighter face mask.
    Team: Ryan Dolan, Seth Gergel
  8. PPG: Develop and compare the reflectance and transmittance photoplethysmogram (PPG) systems for heart rate monitoring at various locations.
    Team: Aaron Gilmore, Sydney Beck, Emily Ensom
  9. Balance: Develop a sensor-embedded wobble board for rehabilitation of ankle or knee injuries with a focus on adding a stress sensor to determine pressure applied by different parts of the foot and improving real-time feedback/calculation.
    Team: Daniel Salazar Herrera, ThankGod Ugochukwu, Matthew Brass
  10. EOG: Develop a PIC-processor based electroculogram system using two pairs of skin electrodes around an eye. The project aims at the combination of EOG and electromyogram (EMG) to improve accuracy and reliability of controlling assistive devices.
    Team: Ryan Ivone, Peter Cerce, Greggory Dambrosca
  11. EyeBlink: Develop a video-based real-time algorithm to detect eye blinks. The system aims at controlling assistive devices for persons with disabilities.
    Team: Rachael Amore, Jason Mercier, Sawyer Nichols
  12. PulseOx: Implement a pulse oximeter sensor with the PIC-processor based system used in our biomedical instrumentation course.
    Team: Derek Santos, Rory Caldas
  13. RFID: Using the radio frequency identification (RFID) technology, track personnel in a hospital environment when they enter or exit a specific area with a focus on the development of a web server.
    Team: Tyler Gagan, Delaney Santos, Lauren Porto (in collaboration with Dr. Brian Silver of UMass Medical School)
  14. Spectrogram: Develop a real-time spectrogram app on an Android smart phone based on the short-time Fourier transform for monitoring the frequency-domain characteristics of the electromyogram (EMG).
    Team: James Baez, Melissa Santi
  15. Insole: Develop a sensors-embedded shoe insole with a smartphone display for real-time pressure distribution of the foot.
    Team: Colby Thomas, Timothy O’Connor (sponsored by Delsys Inc. of Natick, Mass.)
  16. TeeItUp: Create a smart tee with IR range sensors and an audio feedback (pitch-varying beeps) to help aiming the golf club for golfers with visual impairments.
    Team: Scott Barlow, Jeremy Doody, Mary Ellen Sweeney (in collaboration with Providence VA Medical Center)

    Dan Haberek, Daniel O’Brien and Margaret Franklin present their project, SafeTransport.
  17. iClimb: Use embedded pressure sensors in a shoe to provide foot placement feedback and help people with prosthetic limbs during rock climbing.
    Team: Jillian Holden, Emma Orton, Riley Temple (in collaboration with Providence VA Medical Center)
  18. SafeTransport: Create a safe linkage and storage system that meet hospital standards to help protect infusion pumps and other IV pole transported equipment from damage.
    Team: Dan Haberek, Daniel O’Brien, Margaret Franklin (in collaboration with Providence VA Medical Center)
  19. UVcabinet: Create an ultraviolet (UV) disinfection cabinet to safely kill surface bacteria on medical equipment.
    Team: Daniel Medeiros, William Kiernan, Kyle Riley (in collaboration with Providence VA Medical Center)