Group Members:

Damien Tse, Caelan Cheock, Byron Chan, Brendan Engebretson, Andrew Fisak, Ronan Bennett

Electrical / Biomedical Engineering

Electrical Engineering is the design and construction of electronic circuits and systems. Electrical engineers work on many different scales, from the tiny circutry in a smartphone, to massive power generating plants. We used electrical engineering when we figured out the schematics for our logic circuits, and when we built our medicine dispensary using wires and breadboards.

Biomedical Engineering deals with design and implementation of products related to biology and healthcare. Biomedical engineering as a field is growing very quickly right now, and is not projected to slow down anytime soon. We utilized the ideas of biomedical engineering in our project when we created logic to correctly dispense medicine at the appropriate time, without harming the patient.


Initial Projects and Learning

At first, we created an AND gate using a series circuit, then we made an OR gate using a parallel circuit. During this session we learned the basics of circutry and how to debug when problems arose.

 Binary Logic and Breadboards

On the second day, we learned about binary numbers, boolean algebra, and how to create circuits based off of logic statements or equations. We put these new skills to use by designing a Rock Paper Scissors circuit and a College Entrance logic circuit. These projects helped us gain a better understanding of how circuits work, and gave us more experience before we tackled the main project: the medicine delivery system.

Finished college entrance logic circuit simulation with truth table

For this college entrance project we made a truth table, wrote a boolean algebra equation, translated that into a circuit diagram, and simulated the circuit in a website called We didn't have time to actually build it, but the simulator showed the circuit working as intended.

Medicine Delivery System

On Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday we went through the process of brainstorning, designing, sketching, and finally constructing our medicine delivery system circuit.

Our system consists of three main parts:

  1. Input system on Arduino using three buttons
  2. Logic circut on a breadboard using logic gates
  3. Output system with 555 timer, flip flop, LEDs, and an alarm

Output circuit in progess

The logic circuit was the most complex part to wire, and we faced a few problems while constructing it. Sometimes, the outputs would suddenly stop working correctly. However, we color coded our wires to tell what input each came from, which allowed us to find exactly where the issue was quickly.

We modeled our circuits in an online simulator before building them. This greatly helped keep us organized, and it allowed us to test out logic before beginning construction. The knowledge of Boolean Alegebra and formal logic was very helpful in creating these simulations.

The logic circuit receives signals from the input circuit, processes it into an output signal, and sends that information off to the output circuit. This is the main part of the system, and required a significant amount of time to build.

The output circuit displays whether or not to dispense medicine through a series of lights and an alarm. A timer and flip flop system is used to dispense (or not dispense) medicine at a set frequency. In our case, the frequency is about every 10 secs. For this section we had to learn about and apply the electrical engineering concepts of capacitors, resistors, and flip flops.

Unfortunately, there is one combination of inputs that doesn't work correctly -- the unaccompanied green button. We know the mistake is in the construction of the logic circuit, and it has to do with the handling of the green input. However, we ran out of time to actually fix it.

Besides that, our finished project works as intended: translating button input (representing risk factors for the patient), into LED and alarm outputs (representing whether or not it is ok for the patient to take the aspirin).

Published on February 25th, 2018

Last updated on March 24th, 2022