Facilities

Overview

We operate 20 laboratories for workstation computing, computing services, digital and analog electronics, VLSI design and testing, photonics, telecommunications and data networking, network attack and defense, control systems, mechatronics, robotics, alternative energy and electric power systems. Our electronics and mechanical fabrication shops build devices and systems to serve cadet project and faculty research needs. A staff of career professional technicians continuously updates our infrastructure and provides one-on-one personalized service to the people of the Department--cadets, faculty, and staff. Our logistical operation manages inventory, delivery, and decommissioning of hundreds of large items and thousands of small ones per year.

Computer Labs

Our labs provide world class available and reliable resources for cadets to complete their work with no waiting or interruptions in service. The software environment is extremely rich, with full-featured Unix and Windows environments and a large range of software freely available. Each cadet is provided 1 TB of cloud-based storage in addition to department provided resources. A recent upgrade of the West Point network to 10Gb/s circuit providing network redundancies as well as load balancing. Following is a short description of each class of lab facilities.

Network Lab. In these two labs, cadets design, test, manage, and implement computer networks using a variety of equipment. Among the wired and wireless technologies studied are: Ethernet and Wi-Fi topologies, routing, bridging, switching, and network monitoring and analysis. A virtual machine environment enables the lab to simulate hundreds of networked computers using just a few powerful servers.

Unix Lab. This lab provides access to workstations running Red Hat Linux with Gigabit Ethernet connections to department file and comptuer servers. These machines are used for classroom design projects, classroom instruction, and research in various computer science topics.

 

Electrical Engineering Labs

The electrical engineering laboratories at West Point are among the best undergraduate electrical engineering laboratories in the country. They contain state-of-the-art equipment with a total value in excess of $10 million.

Electronics Laboratory I & II. These laboratories provide opportunities in basic circuit design and analysis and advanced study in feedback, oscillators, filters, and amplifier topologies. They also offer the student the capability to design, build, and test integrated differential and discrete operational amplifiers. These labs are used in the Introduction to Electrical Engineering, Basic Electrical Engineering, Introduction to Electronics, and Electronics Design courses.

Digital Computer Logic Laboratory. This lab supports combinational and sequential logic design and also provides the capability to program complex programmable logic devices and field-programmable gate arrays. Students in Digital Computer Logic, Fundamentals of Digital Logic, and senior design projects use this lab.

Microcontroller and Embedded Systems Laboratory. This lab provides cadets with the ability to design, build, and test electronic circuits with embedded microcontrollers. The combination of PCs, logic analyzers, digital oscilloscopes and other test equipment allow cadets to explore microcontroller interfacing at all levels. Students in the Designing with Microprocessors and Mechatronics courses use this lab.

Signal Processing & Control Systems Laboratory. This laboratory provides facilities to design, build, and analyze digital filters, data acquisition and digital feedback control systems, and realize signal processing algorithms in hardware. This lab supports the Signals and Systems and Dynamic Modeling and Control courses.

Advanced Electronics & Communications Laboratory. This lab contains high-end equipment equivalent to graduate-level labs at other universities to design, build, and test microwave circuits and communication components and systems. This lab is primarily used by the Microwave Engineering and communications systems courses.

Photonics Engineering Laboratory. This lab contains lasers, oscilloscopes, spectrum analyzers, and other equipment for the generation of optical signals and their transmission through free space and fiber optic cables. The equipment provides cadets with hands-on demonstrations of the fundamentals of geometrical optics, lasers, LEDs, photodetectors, holography, and fiber optic communication systems. This lab is primarily used by the Photonics Engineering course and students working on senior design and independent study projects.

Electric Power Systems Laboratory. This laboratory contains integrated workstations for the study of AC and DC power generation, transmission, and utilization. The workstations were designed by faculty members and built especially for USMA. This lab also includes a test station for the characterization of small DC motors consisting of a 160A DC power supply, dynamometer, and torque/speed controller. Lastly, a state-of-the-art Smart Grid testbed supports cadet projects and faculty research. Students in the Electric Power Engineering and Mechatronics courses and students working on senior design projects use this lab.

Alternative Energy Laboratory. This laboratory is equipped with three stations: one fuel cell station to study fuel cell modeling, performance and integration; one photovoltaic cell station for characterizing and modeling photovoltaic cells; and one bespoke hybrid microgrid station comprised of a photovoltaic array, battery energy storage, and supporting hardware and software for grid-tied and off-grid operation. 

Robotics Laboratory. This lab supports the research, development and testing of robotic systems. The lab is equipped with measurement and testing tools including a camera based visual tracking system and a global positioning system simulator. Students in the Robotics depth thread and senior design projects use this lab.

Fabrication shops

Our fabrication capabilities printed circuit layout and fabrication by both wet and dry machining processes, surface-mount soldering, 3D printing, CAM capable milling and drilling, and WaterJet capability. A local stock of over 1000 types of electronic items minimizes needs for special ordering to complete cadet design-build-test projects. On-site support keeps all equipment in excellent operating order.