Weeks 3-4 (S3)

The teams have settled into the semester and are starting to hit their first deliverables. All teams are either on track or within a week of their original timelines set out in the proposal.

General Updates

All researchers have settled into their positions and responsibilities for the semester. Our Slack has been especially lively as new members are asking questions and providing new insight on our projects. During this period we took on 5 new members from The University of Rochester. They, as is customary for our organization, will be starting out as participants. Their specializations are in neuroscience and statistics and they will be helping out with signal processing and in running the human subject research trials. All of the Project Leads have been hosting weekly office hours and posting meeting times in our public facing calendar so that new members can easily contact leads and attend meetings.

Additionally, NXT gained access to the ATP Lab next door in Institute Hall to serve as a prototyping space. This space will allow us to solder, assemble hardware, and 3D print which is essential our more hardware-focused teams. The main NXT space will continue to be the main area for meetings and all of the software or support teams.

The paperwork for the human subject testing was completed. We went through about two months of continuous revisions, under the guidance of our faculty adviser, Dr. Dan Phillips. We wanted to ensure that the procedure and methodologies of the study would yield a valuable database for future research. We have spoken to several neurotechnologists to ensure that the data collected will be useful, not only for our research, but for the industry at large. We currently have 13 students who have gained the certification necessary to work on the trial.

Updates by Team

Textile Electrode Project:

  • Conducted impedance testing to determine the ideal size (2D area) of the fabric electrode swatches. The results of the testing can be found here.

  • Worked with Professor Mike Kelly and the Rochester Refugee Sewing & Repair to produce adaptable prototypes for electrode placement. The armband, pictured below, allows us to 'stick' electrodes (using Velcro) anywhere on the inside of the strap. It is also adjustable to fit different sized limbs. Using these, we will be able to conduct further testing to determine ideal placement on the body and density of the electrodes.

Prosthetics Project

  • Diagnosed several issues with the previous prosthetic arm model used in Imagine RIT

    • They have been running testing on the materials, design, and electronics to better improve future models.

  • Initialized and repaired two multi-head 3D printers for use by the entire team

  • Created a research database for current 3D printed arm designs and have been going through, and breaking down the designs to improve our own

  • Are experimenting with alternative drive methods of the fingers

Thought Keyboard Project

  • Created an NXT Github for easy file sharing. This will also be used when publishing opensource data or software in the future

  • Converting existing machine learning algorithms into Python

  • Working with Argzero Technologies, LLC, to develop Project SANS, a custom Unity3D Game Engine interface that will guide researchers through the human subject data collection to ensure that the procedure is carried out properly and to standardize the trials across research technicians and prevent variability between technicians in the trials.

Wheelchair Project

Hardware Team

  • Researching materials, electrode placement, number of electrodes needed, and wiring for an NXT produced EEG headset which will be designed specifically to work with motor imagery

EEG/EMG Game and Controller Project

  • Rewrote code to make it more efficient

  • Created a new method of uploading code to the consoles that is 3x as fast as previous methods

  • Built debug menus and new in-game editing and diagnostic tools

  • Created EMG (muscle flexion-controlled) versions of Tetris, Pong, Snake, and Breakout. These will be used at the Rochester Maker Faire to highlight out technology!

Content Team

  • Organizing events

  • Managing Social Media

  • Active recruitment at U of R

  • Rewrote and published Mission / Vision statements and created promotional tools. A sample of these are attached below!

Mission, Vision
Written by Harrison Canning, Executive Lead