Getting Parts for Your Project

This page does not apply to ZJUI. This will be updated in the coming weeks.

Steps for obtaining parts

As soon as you know which parts you'll need for your design, it's a good idea to start acquiring them. There are several methods that varying widely in cost and waiting time. The primary methods are listed below, most desirable first.

Note: Each group has a budget of around 1500(Rmb) for parts and resources that may be charged to the course account. However, you need to double check this with your project faculty mentor. If small parts are needed, it is strongly encouraged that you just buy it yourself. Since there is no required textbook for the course, we figure the small monetary payout is more than offset by the savings in time and hassle for your group. Also, if you intend to keep your project when you're finished, we ask that you purchase the parts yourself.

Checkout Hardware from ECE 445

The Srivastava Senior Design Lab has a wide variety of hardware available for use in projects, including microcontrollers, DSP boards, LINX RF transmitters and receivers, GPS units, webcams and more. These things can all be checked out from you TA for use on your project. Please note that parts that you checkout from the lab must be returned by the end of the semester or your student account will be charged.

Please see the working inventory of all components available for checkout in the lab. This inventory is as inclusive as possible but there may be additional items around the lab - feel free to look around but items must be checked out through a TA.


Parts may be special ordered from Amazon, Digikey, or Mouser through my.ece. Please refer to this tutorial for help using the my.ece purchasing app. Also, ask your TA or check your email for the ece 445 account number. This option requires TA approval before the order is processed. Once you've placed the order, email your TA to let them know there is an order waiting for their approval so that your order can be processed as quickly as possible. Otherwise, the order may be delayed! Since many part orders are usually placed with common vendors like Digi-key, these orders may be grouped into bulk orders placed on Wednesday and Friday.

Parts ordered through this method will be delivered to the ECE Supply Center.

ECE Supply Center

An alternative option is to have the parts ordered from the ECE Supply Center (located in 1031 ECEB). For this option, you will need to fill out an ECE Supply Center Ordering Form and have your TA sign it. Alternatively, you can charge the parts to your student ID if you need to pay for them yourself.

Free Samples from Companies

It should be mentioned that companies many times are willing to provide small quantities of their products to students engaged in design projects. You might consider approaching the manufacturer directly, particularly regarding their newer products which they are interested in promoting. Don't count on success with this, but it has often been very useful.

Personal Purchases

It is always possible and encouraged to purchase your own parts from a local store (Radio Shack, Best Buy, etc.) or order them from online vendors. Personal purchases will not be reimbursed by the department.

The Business Office (last resort)

If all of these methods fail, your order will need to go through the ECE Business Office with the help of your TA.

Mimicry Stage Lighting Control System

Haozhe Chen, Ruiqi Li, Anqi Tan, Zhaohua Yang

Featured Project

This project aims to build a mimicry stage lighting control system. Generally speaking, the direction control system (usually a robot arm) will imitate the movements of the operator's arms so that the direction of the light can be controlled arbitrarily. In addition, the color of the light array can be determined by either the operator or the inherent information extracted from the music that is being played. Also, the whole system can be built in small size and can be installed easily, so that it can be deployed in scenarios like home parties.

More specifically, an operator (mostly a presenter or DJ) holds (or wears) a control device, the joystick, in each hand. The joysticks track the movement of each arm and transmit the direction information to the central server. This information is then processed and redirected to the mounted projector light arrays to control the actual direction of beams. Each hand controls each side of the lighting array. The system can also memorize a period of movement and playback. Besides, the color of the lights can be manually determined or be automatically determined by the rhythm or tempo of the music being played. The movement of the light gimbal can even be determined by the inherent feature of music.

Project Videos