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AMME4790: Introduction to Biomechatronics (2016 - Semester 2)

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Unit: AMME4790: Introduction to Biomechatronics (6 CP)
Mode: Normal-Day
On Offer: Yes
Level: Senior Advanced
Faculty/School: School of Aerospace, Mechanical & Mechatronic Engineering
Unit Coordinator/s: Dr Brooker, Graham
Session options: Semester 2
Versions for this Unit:
Campus: Camperdown/Darlington
Pre-Requisites: MECH3921 OR MTRX3700.
Brief Handbook Description: Biomechatronics is the application of mechatronic engineering to human biology and as such it forms an important subset of the overall biomedical engineering discipline. This course focusses on a number of areas of interest including auditory and optical prostheses, artificial hearts and active and passive prosthetic limbs and examines the biomechatronic systems (hardware & signal processing) that underpin their operation
Assumed Knowledge: 1.A good practical knowledge and an interest in mechanical and electronic engineering; 2.Adequate maths and applied maths skills; 3.Background knowledge of physics, chemistry and biology; 4.Some programming capability, MATLAB, C, C++; 5.The ability to use, and experience of, common software tools used by engineers including CAD and EDA packages.
Additional Notes: AMME4790 is the last in a series of practical Mechatronic and Electrical courses taken over three years. It takes these engineering concepts, along with the associated mathematical, electronic and mechanical theory and applies this knowledge to a series of practical, albeit specialized biomechatronic applications that will be encountered by Mechatronic Engineers who enter this broad field on graduation.
Lecturer/s: Dr Brooker, Graham
Timetable: AMME4790 Timetable
Time Commitment:
# Activity Name Hours per Week Sessions per Week Weeks per Semester
1 Tutorial 1.00 1 12
2 Independent Study 3.00 1 13
3 Lecture 2.00 2 12
4 Project Work - own time 4.00 1 8
5 Laboratory 3.00 1 11
T&L Activities: Independent Study: Approximately three hours of private study per week outside formal contact hours will be expected in order to successfully consolidate the work covered in class

Lecture: Formal face-to-face lectures will be conducted. These will generally be followed by interactive sessions that incorporate student activity and discussion of the material covered formally

Project Work - own time: A design project will be undertaken by the students. This will take the form of a log-book which will be assessed by the lecturer at regular intervals

Laboratory - Students will work in groups in the kirby Mtrx Lab to develop hardware and software based biomechatronic systems

Attributes listed here represent the key course goals (see Course Map tab) designated for this unit. The list below describes how these attributes are developed through practice in the unit. See Learning Outcomes and Assessment tabs for details of how these attributes are assessed.

Attribute Development Method Attribute Developed
Practise in design idea development through a systematic process of reflection and refinement. This is best achieved using an ongoing journal type method (design assignment) Design (Level 4)
Introduction to the basic concepts and principles of biomechatronics, and practise in applying these in the analysis of device performance (tutorials, quizzes and exam) Engineering/IT Specialisation (Level 3)
Practise in analysis of bioelectric and biomechanical systems, developing MATLAB code for signal processing work (Tutorials and exam) Maths/Science Methods and Tools (Level 3)
The design assignment pushes students to test and extend the limits of their general and specialist engineering skills in researching the requirements and design options for a challenging biomedical engineering problem Information Seeking (Level 3)
Practise in report writing, analytical discussion and live presentation as developed during the tutorials, assignment and presentation) Communication (Level 3)
Practise in making professional engineering decisions and considering that as an engineer, you are accountable for their wider human and commercial implications Professional Conduct (Level 2)
An ability to work as part of a team to put together a presentation based on the assignment results. Project and Team Skills (Level 3)

For explanation of attributes and levels see Engineering & IT Graduate Outcomes Table.

Learning outcomes are the key abilities and knowledge that will be assessed in this unit. They are listed according to the course goal supported by each. See Assessment Tab for details how each outcome is assessed.

Design (Level 4)
1. A conceptual grasp of the intricate relationship between mind and body which will allow students to evaluate different forms of biofeedback that are used for diagnostics and rehabilitation.
Engineering/IT Specialisation (Level 3)
2. The ability to apply specialised engineering skills (mechanical and electrical) to analyze the performance of an active prosthetic device (eg prosthetic limb, hearing implant or artificial heart).
Maths/Science Methods and Tools (Level 3)
3. The knowledge to describe the operational principles of a number of implanted and attachable biomechatronic sensors used to monitor and/or stimulate physiological processes including those associated with hearing, seeing, thinking and movement amongst others.
4. An appreciation of the basics of the signal processing required to interpret bioelectrical signals and the ability to develop MATLAB code to perform this analysis.
Assessment Methods:
# Name Group Weight Due Week Outcomes
1 Matlab Tutorials** No 20.00 Multiple Weeks 1, 2, 3, 4,
2 In class quizzes** Yes 10.00 Multiple Weeks 1, 2, 3, 4,
3 Lab Activities** Yes 25.00 Multiple Weeks 1, 2, 3, 4,
4 Assignment No 10.00 Week 8 (Friday, 5 pm) 1, 2, 3, 4,
5 Final Exam No 35.00 Exam Period 1, 2, 3, 4,
Assessment Description: **Note that all tutorials, labs and the assignment must be completed by individual students or student groups. Students who fail to submit will receive a mark of 0 for the missed submission. Reweighting will be applied to marks of students who provide accepted special consideration forms. This reweighting will be applied to the exam

Late submission of labs and quizzes is not allowed and they will not be marked so will receive 0

Late submission of tutes and the assignment will be penalised at 5% per day or part thereof

Matlab Tutorial: Weekly hands-on tutorials with submissions every 2nd week will be undertaken in which the students are expected to apply and investigate what they have learned by developing models and software. Tutors will grade the individual submissions from students.

In class quizzes: Quizzes will be held at the end of sections to ensure that students have understood the work covered so far

Lab Activities: Weekly small-group activities will be held in the new Kirby Mtrx lab in which students will be required to assemble sensing, processing and actuation hardware that illustrates some biomechatronic concepts. Students will submit a completed worksheet at the end of each lab which will be marked by the lecturer

The culmination of this process will be an informal competition during which the students must develop an EMG controlled robot arm to perform a simple function.

Assignment: The design assignment will take the form of a group assignment based on journals in which the students develop ideas for a biomechatronic device in stages throughout the first half of the semester as their knowledge and understanding of the subject develops. These journals will be used to produce a formal group assignment document which will be graded by the lecturer to determine how well the students have satisfied the requirements specified in the problem statement. This open ended approach to an assignment allows students more scope to be creative, and throughout the course, creativity and an innovative approach will be encouraged.

Final Exam: Open-book examination. Final assessment will include a number of short-answer questions to assess the student’s knowledge of the basic concepts and an analysis section to test their ability to apply these concepts to solve problems. Note that students will be required to pass the exam, to pass the course.
Grade Type Description
Standards Based Assessment Final grades in this unit are awarded at levels of HD for High Distinction, DI (previously D) for Distinction, CR for Credit, PS (previously P) for Pass and FA (previously F) for Fail as defined by University of Sydney Assessment Policy. Details of the Assessment Policy are available on the Policies website at . Standards for grades in individual assessment tasks and the summative method for obtaining a final mark in the unit will be set out in a marking guide supplied by the unit coordinator.
Policies & Procedures: See the policies page of the faculty website at for information regarding university policies and local provisions and procedures within the Faculty of Engineering and Information Technologies.
Prescribed Text/s: Note: Students are expected to have a personal copy of all books listed.
  • Introduction to Biomechatronics

Note that the "Weeks" referred to in this Schedule are those of the official university semester calendar

Week Description
Week 1 Introduction to Biomechatronics
Week 2 Hearing Prostheses
Week 3 Hearing Prostheses - Cochlear Implants
Week 4 Sight & Sensory Substitution
Week 5 Sight - Implants & Electrodes
Week 6 Electrocardiography
Week 7 Artificial Hearts - VADs
Week 8 Artificial Hearts - TAHs
Assessment Due: Assignment
Week 9 Respiration
Week 10 Respiration
Week 11 Public Holiday
Week 12 Movement - Limb Prosthetics
Week 13 Movement - Limb Prosthetics
Exam Period Assessment Due: Final Exam

Course Relations

The following is a list of courses which have added this Unit to their structure.

Course Year(s) Offered
Biomedical - Chemical and Biomolecular Major 2015
Biomedical - Information Technology Major 2015
Biomedical - Mechanical Major 2015
Biomedical - Mechatronics Major 2015
Mechanical Engineering (Biomedical) / Medical Science 2010, 2011, 2012
Mechatronic Engineering / Arts 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Mechatronic Engineering (Space) / Arts 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Biomedical Engineering / Law 2013, 2014
Biomedical Engineering / Arts 2013, 2014
Biomedical Engineering / Commerce 2013, 2014
Biomedical Engineering / Medical Science 2013, 2014
Biomedical Engineering / Project Management 2013, 2014
Biomedical Engineering / Science 2013, 2014
Biomedical Mid-Year 2016
Biomedical Engineering 2016
Biomedical / Arts 2015, 2016
Biomedical / Commerce 2015, 2016
Biomedical / Medical Science 2015, 2016
Biomedical / Music Studies 2016
Biomedical / Project Management 2015, 2016
Biomedical /Science 2015, 2016
Biomedical / Law 2015, 2016
Mechatronic Mid-Year 2016
Mechatronic Engineering 2015, 2016
Mechatronic / Arts 2015, 2016
Mechatronic / Commerce 2015, 2016
Mechatronic / Music Studies 2016
Mechatronic / Project Management 2015, 2016
Mechatronic / Science 2015, 2016
Mechatronic / Law 2015, 2016
Mechatronic (Space) 2015
Mechatronic (Space) / Arts 2015
Mechatronic (Space) / Commerce 2015
Mechatronic (Space) / Project Management 2015
Mechatronic (Space) / Science 2015
Mechatronic (Space) / Law 2015
Mechanical Engineering (Biomedical) / Arts 2011, 2012
Mechanical Engineering (Biomedical) / Commerce 2012
Mechanical Engineering (Biomedical) / Project Management 2012
Mechanical Engineering (Biomedical) / Science 2011, 2012
Mechanical Engineering (Biomedical) / Law 2012
Mechatronic Engineering / Commerce 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Mechatronic Engineering / Medical Science 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Mechatronic Engineering / Project Management 2012, 2013, 2014
Mechatronic Engineering / Science 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Mechatronic Engineering (Space) / Commerce 2014
Mechatronic Engineering (Space) / Medical Science 2011, 2012, 2014, 2013
Mechatronic Engineering (Space) / Project Management 2012, 2013, 2014
Mechatronic Engineering (Space) / Science 2011, 2013, 2014
Mechatronic Engineering (Space) / Law 2014, 2013

Course Goals

This unit contributes to the achievement of the following course goals:

Attribute Practiced Assessed
Design (Level 4) Yes 21.25%
Engineering/IT Specialisation (Level 3) Yes 28.75%
Maths/Science Methods and Tools (Level 3) Yes 50%
Communication (Level 3) Yes 0%
Information Seeking (Level 3) Yes 0%
Professional Conduct (Level 2) Yes 0%
Project and Team Skills (Level 3) Yes 0%

These goals are selected from Engineering & IT Graduate Outcomes Table which defines overall goals for courses where this unit is primarily offered. See Engineering & IT Graduate Outcomes Table for details of the attributes and levels to be developed in the course as a whole. Percentage figures alongside each course goal provide a rough indication of their relative weighting in assessment for this unit. Note that not all goals are necessarily part of assessment. Some may be more about practice activity. See Learning outcomes for details of what is assessed in relation to each goal and Assessment for details of how the outcome is assessed. See Attributes for details of practice provided for each goal.