PAWS: Precise Autonomous Wildlife Surveillance

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Requirements Specification


     On account of the fact that our system is to be placed in the environment there are strict concerns pertaining to interference with wildlife or other environmental factors.  Organizations such as the United States Fish and Wildlife Services and Social Science Research Institute provide regulations to monitor tolerable levels of interference in the wild.
     Noise pollution and its effect on the health and longevity of animals is a specific area of research that involves many variables.  It is difficult to discern whether or not humans are responsible for the seeming effects of noise on animals when so many possibilities of a noise emission from natural sources could be accounted for.  “Both land and marine wildlife have been studied, especially in regards to noise in the National Parks System and the onslaught of human- made cacophony in the oceans from military, commercial and scientific endeavors.”[6] Our system will be tested for noise levels and evaluated to be within a, yet to be determined, permissible audible range.

Pan Speed:

     The pan speed of the camera-servo component is determined by the speed of the target. There is a trade-off between capturing targets at average or top speeds as opposed to monitoring motions in leisure and limited speeds of different species. Fig. 2 illustrates the average speeds of various endangered animals; this was a step in our research to determine the speed of the targets we intend on tracking. By choosing a maximum target speed to be 12mph, we are able to enhance images while panning, and maintain the ability detect and track animals at significant speeds.


     The desired resolution will ultimately depend on the userís choice of camera. Our range of vision is tailored toward medium to large land animals so they should be easily distinguishable without high-end resolution. The main constraint of this feature from the application is that the system is able to identify features or behaviors of animals such as unique spots. The resolution of PAWS is 3.2 Megapixels with 320 x 240 or 160 x 120 video options. The 4x automatic focus zoom will significantly enhance our image quality.


     PAWS must be able to withstand the elements, and conditions that may be encountered in areas of deployment. Our system aims to capture a multitude of species ranging from polar bears to tigers and must endure extreme climates. The components of our product are environment-sensitive, however the system provides the user with an optional casing that will enhance resilience in extreme conditions. Our system is able to operate with full functionality withstanding temperatures from 0-50 degrees Celsius.


     The set cost of this project is proportional to the cost of parts. The target cost per unit is less than $700. The cost of the parts with exception of the camera, which varies greatly with respect to quality, is less than $300. The parts include 4 motion sensors, 1 or 2 servo motors (TBD), a video camera with automated zoom and quality resolution, and the electronic components- microprocessor, printed circuit board, etc.

Statement of the Problem
Requirements Specification
System Block Diagram
System Specification
PDR, MDR, CDR and FPR Files
College of Engineering
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
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