Date of Award

Winter 1-31-1994

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering - (M.S.)


Mechanical and Industrial Engineering

First Advisor

Rajesh N. Dave

Second Advisor

Anthony D. Rosato

Third Advisor

Bruce G. Bukiet

Fourth Advisor

Ian Sanford Fischer


Implementation aspects of monitoring the position and orientation of a one-inch diameter particle in space non-intrusively based on the principle of magnetic induction coupling are discussed. A radio-transmitter embedded within the particle induces voltages in receiver antennae. Position and orientation of the particle are deciphered from these voltages. A previously developed math model that predicts the voltage induced in an antenna given the position and orientation of the transmitter with respect to the antenna as well as the numerical techniques used to obtain the inverse solution of computing position and orientation from a given set of voltages are used.

Practical issues of implementation including the experimental setup, the effect of model-reality discrepancy, empirical model corrections, and methods improving the numerical techniques are the focus of the present study. Experimental results show that the present tracking system has an accuracy of approximately 1 to 2 particle diameters and indicate the accuracy may be greatly improved with the use of multiple transmitters. The technique of tracking developed here has a wide range of applications because of its non-intrusive nature, however, emphasis is placed on the study of the behavior of bulk solids. Directions for future work are discussed.