Design of 5-DOF Dynamic Test Rig for Aerodynamic Characterization of Flight Vehicle

For the 5 DoF Rig, the data acquisition system has been iterated for a total of three times so far.

  1. The 1st version had everything going into a National Instruments’ PXI chassis with a lot of wires hanging around. The officials at the National Wind Tunnel Facility (NWTF) here at IIT Kanpur refused to let it be tested inside the wind tunnel, fearing that the wires might snap and cause damage to the wind tunnel. This wired system was presented at VI Mantra 2011 (Research Category), annual national level technical paper contest organized by National Instruments, where it received first prize.
  2. To do away with the wires, a completely new system was developed from the scratch which used IEEE 802.15.4 ZigBee protocol based modules to transmit data wireless to  the base station. With this system installed on-board, the rig was successfully tested inside the wind tunnel.
  3. The latest and the final iteration of the wireless data acquisition system improves upon various drawbacks of the previous system. The new system features custom built PCBs and a highly robust modular design. A customized 32-bit PIC32 microcontroller based base station has also been designed. A new firmware is been written for the new system  which has features like DMA based UART handling, hardware based flow control and USB pen drive data logging.

Project description on my Professor’s Homepage

For Pictures of the 1st data logging system, please Click Here.

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