Engineering Science - Theses, Dissertations, and other Required Graduate Degree Essays

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Decision feedback scheme for spatial modulation

Author: 
Date created: 
2019-01-25
Abstract: 

Spatial Modulation (SM) is a newly developed Multiple Input Multiple Output (MIMO) technique where the antenna/spatial constellation is used as an information carrying unit in addition to the modulation constellation. Traditional SM techniques rely on periodic insertion of the pilot symbols to estimate the channel state information; however, it reduces the effective throughput. A differential SM (DSM) technique was developed to circumvent the need of channel estimation altogether. However, the computational complexity of the DSM increases exponentially with the increase of antennas and becomes impractical even for a moderate antenna array. In this scenario a novel clustering based decision feedback (CB-DFB) scheme is proposed in this thesis which similar to DSM does not require any pilot symbols, and yet has a very low complexity. A generalized CB-DFB scheme is later proposed which further overcomes the constraints of traditional SM techniques and increases the overall throughput.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Paul Ho
Department: 
Applied Sciences: School of Engineering Science
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.A.Sc.

EndoVision: A prototype robotic laparoscope and telementoring system allowing intuitive endoscopic visualization

Author: 
Date created: 
2018-12-14
Abstract: 

This project is for the development of a prototype system for endoscopic visualization for minimally invasive surgeries (MIS). The system will assist a surgeon in adjusting and maintaining the field of view (FOV) of an endoscopic system through head motions alone, relieving the need for hands-on adjustment of a camera scope. A surgeon would wear a head-mounted display (HMD) to visualize the area of interest. A market-ready device would include real-time web communication allowing remote surgeons to provide audio and visual feedback during a surgery. This medical device would reduce the number of medical staff needed for an MIS procedure, as well as providing surgeons with assistance from other medical professionals over the web, increasing the success rate of MIS procedures. Uses for this device include: Providing intuitive control of the surgical FOV, training of surgeons in MIS, and as a platform for real-time communication between surgeons at a distance.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Andrew Rawicz
Department: 
Applied Sciences: School of Engineering Science
Thesis type: 
(Project) M.Eng.

FMG based continuous finger movement prediction toward partial hand prosthesis control

Date created: 
2018-12-10
Abstract: 

Partial hand amputation forms more than 90% of all the upper limb amputations. To improve the quality of life for partial hand amputees different prosthesis options, including externally-powered prosthesis, have been investigated. This work is exploring Force Myography (FMG) as a technique for regressing grasping movement accompanied by wrist position variations. This study can lay the groundwork for a future investigation of FMG as a technique for controlling externally-powered prostheses continuously. Ten able-bodied participants performed three hand movements while their wrist was fixed in one of the six predefined positions. Two approaches were examined for estimating grasping: (i) one regression model, trained on data from all wrist positions and hand movements; (ii) a classifier that identified the wrist position followed by a separate regression model for each wrist position. Both approaches presented similar performance while the first approach was more than two times faster. The results indicate the potential of FMG to regress grasping movement, accompanied by wrist position variations.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Carlo Menon
Department: 
Applied Sciences: School of Engineering Science
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.A.Sc.

Quantitative measurements of biological/chemical concentrations using smartphone cameras

Author: 
Date created: 
2018-11-16
Abstract: 

This thesis presents a smartphone-based imaging system capable of quantifying the concentration of an assortment of biological/chemical assay samples. The main goal of this thesis work is to construct an image database which characterizes the relationship between color information and concentrations of the biological/chemical assay sample. For this aim, a designated optical setup combined with image processing and data analyzing techniques was implemented. A series of experiments conducted on selected assays, including fluorescein, RNA Mango, homogenized milk and yeast have demonstrated that our proposed system estimates the concentration of fluorescent materials and colloidal mixtures comparable to currently used commercial and laboratory instruments. Furthermore, by utilizing the camera and computational power of smartphones, eventual development can be directed toward extremely compact, inexpensive and portable analysis and diagnostic systems which will allow experiments and tests to be conducted in remote or impoverished areas.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Ash Parameswaran
Pablo Nepomnaschy
Department: 
Applied Sciences: School of Engineering Science
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) Ph.D.

Development of MRI template library for nucleus accumbens

Date created: 
2017-11-23
Abstract: 

Segmentation of medical images is one of the most critical steps in many clinical applications. In brain MRI analysis, image segmentation is commonly used for measuring and visualizing the brain’s anatomical structures, for analyzing brain changes. In this project a manual template library of Nucleus Accumbens is created by manually segmenting the MRI images. Nucleus Accumbens is situated in the basal ganglia part of brain and is major component of ventral striatum. A protocol is generated in order to recognize the structure and boundaries of Nucleus Accumbens in the MRI images. The FreeSurfer images are used and manually segmented. The FS-LDDMM algorithm is then used for mapping the segmentations over the rest of the subjects. This template library is a heterogeneous combination of healthy and diseased Nucleus Accumbens structures which were used to train FS+LDDMM and therefore, enable FS+LDDMM to identify Nucleus Accumbens over a diverse range of structural variation which would be present for different neurodegenerative diseases. Cross-validations are done in order to compare the efficiency of the FreeSurfer segmented images and the segmentations performed by FS-LDDMM method. The manual template library generated will be used with a multi- atlas segmentation algorithm like FS-LDDMM to segment large number of images acquired from patients with neurodegenerative disorders so as to get better understanding of the diseases.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Mirza Faisal Beg
Department: 
Applied Sciences: School of Engineering Science
Thesis type: 
(Project) M.Eng.

Screen-printable polymer fabrication with applications to wearable nanocomposite electronics and microfluidic systems

Author: 
Date created: 
2018-09-19
Abstract: 

Wearable devices and systems are already important to our lives and have the potential for even greater impact. Many researchers are developing wearable devices and systems, and many different technologies are investigated. However, most of these technologies have limitations in flexibility, long fabrication times, lack of reusability, or complicated attachment mechanisms. Furthermore, many systems are limited in the functions that they can perform. Most systems are also confined to electronic functionality; there is not a fully successful wearable microfluidic technology developed with wearable fluidic channels for microfluidic devices, e.g., foldable microfluidic mixers or flexible bio-fluid sensors for wearable analysis systems. As an alternative approach, we develop new methods to screen-print electronic and fluidic devices on clothing that employ materials designed specifically for printing on textile. We present a new screen-printable silver conductive nanoparticle composite polymer (C-NCP) that can be applied to wearable systems for electronic functionality. We also develop a new technique to realize fully wearable microfluidic devices. Screen printable C-NCPs benefit the development of wearable devices due to their high degree of flexibility, good conductivity, and ability to be easily patterned into electrical and microfluidic devices. The new microfluidic device fabrication method enables easy, simple, and fast development of wearable microfluidic devices using inexpensive materials and equipment. In this thesis, a screen-printable C-NCP is developed and characterized, and its potential for wearable devices and systems is explored through a variety of demonstrator systems. The new microfluidic device fabrication method is explained in detail with optimization and characterization. Passive wearable microfluidic devices are fabricated on fabric, and active wearable microfluidic devices with electrical structures are also fabricated by combining wearable microfluidic structures with silver C-NCP as electronic routing and electrodes. The following demonstration devices and systems are developed to showcase different aspects of the new materials and fabrication techniques: 1) flexible dry electrocardiogram (ECG) electrodes screen printed on textile to measure heart bioelectrical signals; 2) flexible electrical routing printed on a safety vests for LED attachment and lighting system demonstration; 3) wearable microfluidic mixer fabricated on textiles; 4) and a wearable fluid conductivity sensor that combines C-NCP with flexible microfluidics.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Bonnie L. Gray
Department: 
Applied Sciences: School of Engineering Science
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) Ph.D.

Multi-phase placement approach for field programmable gate arrays

Author: 
Date created: 
2018-06-29
Abstract: 

Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGAs) are integrated circuits that contain configurable logic blocks and wiring resources that enable them to implement digital circuits. To create a design, the designer typically describes the design using a Hardware Description Language (HDL). This HDL is synthesized into a configuration bitstream to program the FPGA using Computer-Aided Design (CAD) tools. Due to their rapid growth in size, FPGAs are able to implement increasingly larger circuit designs. However, this has also lead to the run-time of the CAD tools increasing dramatically. To improve the run-time of CAD tools, this thesis focuses on improving the run-time of the placement stage of the CAD algorithms, which accounts for a significant portion of the overall run-time of the CAD flow. This thesis explores techniques for creating design specific groupings of logic blocks (called multi-blocks) that can be used in conjunction with a new placement algorithm, called the singularity placer. This approach allows the flow to collapse related logic blocks in the design into “multi-blocks”, thereby reducing the design complexity for placement. This reduced complexity can be used to reduce placement runtime, despite having to re-expand these multi-blocks into their original logic blocks to complete the placement phase of the design. This approach allows tradeoffs between the run-time of the CAD tools and the design’s key performance metrics (e.g. operating frequency). This thesis first proposes and evaluates a number of algorithms to divide a design comprised of logic blocks into groups of logic blocks (also known as “multi-blocks”). The objective of this approach is to reduce the run-time as grouping logic blocks of a design decreases the number of nodes to be processed for placement. Next, a two-phase placement algorithm, called the singularity placer, is proposed that can place a mix of multi-blocks and singular logic blocks onto FPGA resources. The experimental evaluation shows that the proposed approach to placement enables up to 30X speedup with an average wirelength degradation of 12% with respect to VPR. This speedup is a dramatic increase that has the potential to make FPGA devices and design flows more useful to application spaces that desire acceleration over pure software in a timely fashion, while not requiring the “best” operating frequency possible.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Lesley Shannon
Peter Jamieson
Department: 
Applied Sciences: School of Engineering Science
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) Ph.D.

Fabrication of two dimensional MoS2 sensors for piezoelectric applications

Author: 
Date created: 
2018-08-21
Abstract: 

With the growing popularity of miniaturization of high performance piezoelectric devices, the research on applications of Transition Metal Dicalcogenide (TMD) mono layers has also grown a lot. This is because of the suitable piezoelectric properties exhibited by these two dimensional materials. In this project, a piezoelectric sensor, which could be used for various applications, is being designed which could receive both low and high frequency signals well. This project is in collaboration with Think Sensor Research, an organization working towards the development of marine and aerospace sensor applications. The present version of this device, which is being used by the collaboration company, possesses Lead zirconate titanate (PZT) as the piezoelectric material. Our purpose was to design and fabricate this device using Molybdenum Disulfide (MoS2) instead of PZT and observe the response and piezoelectric properties of the device.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Michael Adachi
Department: 
Applied Sciences: School of Engineering Science
Thesis type: 
(Project) M.Eng.

Application of machine learning techniques for detecting anomalies in communication networks

Author: 
Date created: 
2018-06-19
Abstract: 

Detecting, analyzing, and defending against cyber threats is an important topic in cyber security. Applying machine learning techniques to detect such threats has received considerable attention in research literature. Anomalies of Border Gateway Protocol (BGP) affect network operations and their detection is of interest to researchers and practitioners. In this Thesis, we describe main properties of the BGP and datasets that contain BGP records collected from various public and private domain repositories such as Réseaux IP Européens (RIPE) and BCNET. With the development of fast computing platforms, the neural network-based algorithms have proved useful in detecting BGP anomalies. We apply the Long Short-Term Memory machine learning technique for classification of known network anomalies. The models are trained and tested on various collected datasets. Various classification techniques and approaches are compared based on accuracy and F-Score.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Ljiljana Trajković
Department: 
Applied Sciences: School of Engineering Science
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.A.Sc.

Feasibility of using force myography (FMG) for estimating hand force and wrist torque

Date created: 
2017-10-12
Abstract: 

Hand force estimation is critical for applications that involve physical human-machine interactions for force monitoring and machine control. Force Myography (FMG) is a potential technique to be used for estimating hand force/torque. The FMG signals represent the volumetric changes in the arm muscles due to muscle contraction or expansion during force/torque exertion. The aim of this thesis is to explore the suitability of FMG for hand force/torque estimation. Studying the feasibility of using FMG for torque estimation was preliminary investigated by using 1-DOF torque sensor for labeling the FMG during torque exertion. A custom designed force-sensing resistors (FSRs) band was donned on the forearm for measuring FMG signals, while the participants exerted torque around three axes. A regression model was created for each torque axis. The average R2 was 0.89 for pronation-supination, flexion-extension, and radial-ulnar deviations. Using 1-DOF torque sensor for labeling the data needs a new custom-rig for capturing each torque axis. To overcome this limitation, a 6-DOF force/torque load cell was used for labeling the FMG data during force/torque exertion in any direction. In addition, 60 FSRs were embedded into four bands to be worn on the arm for measuring FMG signals during force/torque exertion. Healthy participants were recruited in this study and were asked to exert isometric force along three perpendicular axes, torque about the same three axes, and force and torque freely in any direction. Three cases were considered to explore the performance of the FMG bands in estimating force/torque in single- and multi- axis. These cases are: (1) 6 axes force/torque individually; (2) 3-DOF force and 3-DOF torque; and (3) 6-DOF force and torque simultaneously. In addition, a comparison between all possible combinations of the four bands was held to provide guidelines about the best placement of the FMG measurements in each case. The results show a promising potential of FMG to estimate isometric force/torque. Specifically, the average R2 accuracies using the four bands on the arm are 0.97 when the 6 force/torque axes were considered individually; 0.98 and 0.96 for the 3-DOF force and torque, respectively; and 0.95 for 6-DOF force/torque estimation.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Carlo Menon
Department: 
Applied Sciences: School of Engineering Science
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.A.Sc.