Besides the update of learning materials like distance learning letters and lab exercises, an extensive survey on state-of-the-art FPGA/SoC development boards and EDA tools was done. Based on the survey, FPGA development boards for the bachelor study programs as well as SoC boards for the master programs have been selected. A number of projects and hands-on exercises have been developed for the new development boards and EDA tools.
Another important project result is the development of an interactive, safety-related railway demonstrator which was done in cooperation with the INES project. It consists of a model train set with three tracks, several trains as well as a series of signals and track switches, see figure on the right hand side. The tracks are divided into a number of sections whereby each section is under control of an FPGA/SoC development board. All FPGA/SoC boards are interconnected over an Ethernet network to build up a distributed system. An operator PC which is also connected to the Ethernet network works as a central authority in order to control the whole system. The figures below show the demonstrator from the bottom side as well as a track plan. The demonstrator will be used as development platform for future Bachelor and Master projects, as well as a starting point for further R&D projects of the Research Group Embedded Systems, like the previously mentioned project INES. It is also planned to present the demonstrator to the broad public at events like the "Lange Nacht der Forschung" or the "Open Days" of the UAS Technikum.
Click here for a short video clip that shows the demonstrator in action.
For more details of our work please also visit the iPlat - Wiki which is periodically updated with latest information.