Wireless @ VTWelcome to the home of Wireless @ Virginia Tech, an exciting university-wide focus on wireless technology. Wireless @ VT is bringing together researchers, facilities, equipment, and expertise from across Virginia Tech to focus on multi-disciplinary solutions to "Invent the Future" of wireless.
Garrett Vanhoy was a 2010 participant in our REU program.
The following publications were a direct result of his participation in the program:
- Chen, D.; Vanhoy, G.; Beaufait, M.; Dietrich,C.B.; “OSSIE/GNU Radio Generic Component,” 2011 Wireless Telecommunications Symposium (WTS 2011), New York, NY, April 13-15, 2011.
- Chen, D.; Vanhoy, G.; Beaufait, M.; Dietrich, C.B., “OSSIE/GNU Radio Generic Component Demonstration,” SDR ’10 Technical Conference, Washington, DC, November 30-December 4, 2010
Garrett attended the Wireless Innovation Forum-SDR’10 in Washington, D.C. According to Garrett, “It was a great experience as I got to see the huge scope of the field of research I had contributed to as well as understand where my research fit in. I was able to collaborate with another person in the Virgnia Tech Antenna Group in my demonstration by using an Ultra-Wideband Antenna. I never thought that going to a conference would be very productive since understanding another person’s work even within your own field is so rare, but I learned that no matter what they may be studying, you can learn a healthy attitude towards research and build a giant repertoire of ideas that may prove
useful in the future. It was really well worth my time to go to this conference despite it being a few weeks before finals.”
How did your research contribute to scientific knowledge?
What my team has done was not what is normally considered research, but
we have certainly come to rediscover things that may not be always apparent to people. We combined two pieces of software that aimed to accomplish the same thing. Each had its share of weaknesses and strengths. In this time in the evolution of wireless technology where software seems to reign supreme it is extremely important to remember that computers speak many languages. There are an infinite number of ways to do the same thing and it is likely that when you finish a piece of software that you will find a more efficient way to do exactly what you have done. Because of this, it is important to create software that can be easily mutated into something entirely new. In a sentence: The flexibility Software-Defined Radio is not only defined in its hardware, but also in its software.
Describe the practical applications of your research.
The software my team created might eventually allow the meshing of two
communities in SDR that have built up around OSSIE and GNURadio. Then,
each of these communities can benefit from each others’ success and thus
create a more united community of open-source developers. Most of the
weaknesses of either piece of software will lessen in degree in exchange for the price of having to learn to use another piece of software.
Have you retained a mentor relationship with a faculty member after leaving the program? Please describe.
Yes, the team and I have remained in contact with Dr. Carl Dietrich since we started this program. He has been a guide for all of us both in our research and our plans for graduate school.
Did the program help you develop any research skills such as writing up research results, giving scientific presentation, etc.? Please describe.
The program helped me learn the importance of team work. Without our team
spirit and mutual encouragement, what we achieved would not have been
possible. Every person in the team had something to contribute on a daily basis that made research both fun and productive. I certainly got plenty of practice in presenting our research in the weekly meetings. These weekly meetings helped me understand why some implementations of research seem only half-thought out. We regularly presented old efforts while perfecting new ones behind the scenes. Things change so quickly that even finding time to demonstrate them may take too long.
Do you have any other comments on the REU program or your experience with it?
I firmly believe that this REU is administered in such a way that if you push
yourself to achieve more than you think you can, you will. There are other REU programs that run during the same time that have an extremely regimented schedule. This REU allows for so much time and so much freedom that if used correctly; it can yield results unlike the others.
Wilfredo Cartagena was a 2009 participant in our REU Program.
Faculty Mentor: Dr. Carl Dietrich
Research Group Participants: Wilfredo Cartagena and Mario Rodriquez
Title of Project: Adaptive Digital SDR Waveform for Demonstration of CROSS Atchitecture
This paper describes preliminary work towards demonstration of cognitive control of a Software-Defined Radio (SDR) waveform based on the Software Communications Architecture (SCA), via the Cognitive Radio Open Source System (CROSS). CROSS is an open architecture for interfacing subsystems of a cognitive radio. Development of an adaptive controller component
for operation with SDR waveforms that run with the Open Source SCA Implementation-Embedded (OSSIE) is described and its performance is characterized. The controller adaptively modifies parameters of signal processing components using methods specified in the SCA and implemented in the OSSIE Waveform Dashboard (WaveDash). The decision making and control functions of the controller can be separated and interfaced via the CROSS architecture to demonstrate the desired capability.
Describe the practical applications of your research
This research was part of a project to improve VT open source software known as OSSIE (Open-Source SCA Implementation-Embedded).
Have you retained a mentor relationship with a faculty member after leaving the
Did the program help you develop any research skills?
Yes, it helped me understand and learn how to conduct research.
Wilfredo is from Bayamon, Puerto Rico and attends the University of Puerto Rico, Mayaguez (UPRM), majoring in electrical engineering. During summer 2011, he is working in the Communication and Networking Group, a part of the Applied Information Sciences Department (AISD) of the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (JHUAPL) in Baltimore, MD.
When asked about his experience as part of the REU program at Virginia Tech, this was his response:
Back in 2009 I didn’t have the experience of doing real undergraduate research. Virginia Tech provided me the opportunity to improve different skills such as teamwork, leadership, networking, technical skills, etc. Most importantly, I had the opportunity to do real undergraduate research in the field of communication systems. I was introduced to the field of communication systems, which was unknown for me at the moment, and now I am working in the same field this summer, two years after I participated in the REU program in cognitive communications.