Access Control and Environmental Monitoring System

Members: Aissar Alanasweh, Michael Gray, Akeem Olaosebikan, Karl Swanson

Advisor: Professor Zefran

II. Project Goals

A network room controller will monitor the temperature and humidity of a room and also operate as a door controller. This device would be used in server and mechanical rooms that need to be monitored and secured.

The network controllers could be installed on a campus, in a data center, or in a small business to provide security and environmental monitoring for systems. The controllers will find the campus controller server via a simple DNS lookup. Once provisioned by an administrator, they are part of the system. The controller server software will run a standard lamp server stack, so it is deployable in many environments.

During normal operation, the device will update sensor readings to the server. The server software will monitor the updates and notify employees when the sensors return values out of range. The box will also listen for an access card to be scanned by a wiegand proximity card reader. When a card is scanned, the number will be sent to the server. if the user is authorized, a relay or darlington transistor will power an electric strike allowing the door to open. The device communicates to the server using standard web protocols.

The devices will be administered via a web interface on the central server. Sensor boundaries and access cards may be added to the system in an administrative interface. A mobile view will allow alerts to be viewed on a mobile device.

Building fire and security systems often use 12VDC power, there are a variety of UL listed enclosures that already provide regulated 12V power from a 120VAC input. Some enclosures provide room for a backup 12V SLA that will continue to power the controller when the main power cuts out. The final board may mount into one of these enclosures.

The temperature sensor will be able to be connected directly to the board either wired or wirelessly. The wireless sensors will communicate with a coordinator device which can be used as a stand alone product that can communicate with the server to update the temperatures.

III. Product Need

Environmental monitoring and access control systems are present in many different buildings. These systems monitor temperature for food and equipment safety, and comfort. Access control systems secure buildings and campuses by only allowing designated users into secured areas. These products tend to be be parts of two discrete systems today. The new device will combine these systems into one unit that can serve at both capacities. This simplification reduces manufacturing costs by sharing resources between devices. The design document below describes system and subsystem requirements for device design and manufacturing.

IV. Technical Specifications

Software design

The server and client side software will be written in python. Device drivers for the relays and wiegand reader may be written in C. The database layer of the application may be abstracted from an actual database system, allowing different options. By default, MySQL may be used.


Templates - HTML and javascript templates used to render the web interface Authentication - Handles user and device authentication to the web interface Temperature Logger - Temperature updates are logged to the database Temperature Monitor - Check temperature db on an interval. If logs meet alarm requirements, send alerts Access Logger - Return access control list to reader and log access attempts. Apache - Apache sits between the Django applicaton and the clients.

Web Pages

Server Hardware

Django and MySQL are common web platforms designed to scale. The server may run on a variety of unix and linux platforms, including the beaglebone itself. The server system requirements will depend on the speed and uptime needs of the client.

Wireless Temperature Sensors

Sensors will communicate with a coordinator that will display the temperatures and give the user the ability to add/delete sensors from the network. In addition the coordinator will be able to connect to the network and update the results on the webpage.

V. Engineering Design Alternatives

Alternative Design Idea 1:

An alternative design would be to design a simpler system. For example, instead of making the sensors readable from the internet we could have it so that all the sensors would have to be read from an LCD that is connected right to the beaglebone. The drawback of this design is that we would not be able to monitor the temperatures from multiple locations. In addition, we would not be able to control the door access system remotely. This design would be much easier because we would not have to worry about servers or web design. If we went with this design we could just hardwire the sensors to the beaglebone and then write a program that takes turns reading each temperature sensor. In addition, the door access system could also be hardwired to the beaglebone and then we would have all the information for who has access to each door stored in the beaglebone. However, this design would be more complicated in regard to the fact that we would have to write extra code in order to have an LCD screen to interface with the beaglebone

Alternative Design Idea 2:

Designing our system to do both the temperature monitoring and door access might be a little too much. As a result, an alternative design idea would be to build a system that does only the temperature sensing. We could still use the server and web interface however we could just do away with the door access system. In this new system we will still use the beaglebone to read all the data from the temperature sensors. In addition, we will design a website that the user will be able to access and read the temperatures of each sensor. By doing away with the door access system we will have extra time where we could have the temperature sensors communicate with the beaglebone by either a wire or wireless. The wireless communicating would be more convenient because we will be able to put the sensors in positions we might not be able to run wire too, however we will still have to power the sensors.

Alternative Design Idea 3:

Using a beaglebone to compute our data will make it easier to connect to the internet. However, the beaglebone costs $45 which can be pricy. For example, is a customer owns 15 restaurants and wants to monitor the temperature of each restaurants freezer/cooler buying 15 beaglebones would start getting expensive. As a result, an alternative design could be to use a cheap microcontroller in place of the beaglebone. Since the beaglebone has a Ethernet jack on board it would be fairly simple to connect to the internet, and if we use a microcontroller it would more difficult to transmit our data to a server. In addition, making our sensors wireless would be more difficult with the microcontroller because we can connect a Wifi adapter directly to the beaglebone. Since, the beaglebone does increase the cost of our system we need to seriously consider this design for such cases as described above.

VI. Design Alternative Evaluation Criteria

In the following criteria, 1 - 3 are the most weighted with 1 being the most
  1. Contribution that this design approach will make to your ECE education
  2. Your group’s technical knowledge about the design alternative
  3. Cost to consumer
  4. Availability of parts required
  5. Time needed to complete design and development
  6. Development cost (what each team member will need to spend)
  7. Ease of satisfying the previously-defined technical specifications
  8. Availability of any required datasheets, application notes or development kits
  9. Ability to manufacture
  10. Compliance with regulations or standards issues that will need to be addressed
  11. How attractive this design method will look on your resume
  12. Ease of product use
  13. Suitability for presentation at the Senior Design Expo

VII. Selection of Design Alternative

SELECTION OF BEST DESIGN ALTERNATIVE: each idea is graded on a scale from 3(best) to 1(worst)
# Criteria Idea 1 Idea 2 Idea 3
1 Contribution that this design approach will make to your ECE education (+3) 5 4 6
2 Your group’s technical knowledge about the design alternative (+2) 5 4 3
3 Cost to consumer (+1) 2 3 4
4 Availability of parts required 1 3 2
5 Time needed to complete design and development 3 2 1
6 Development cost (what each team member will need to spend) 1 3 2
7 Ease of satisfying the previously-defined technical specifications 2 3 1
8 Availability of any required datasheets, application notes or development kits 3 2 1
9 Ability to manufacture 3 2 1
10 Compliance with regulations or standards issues that will need to be addressed 2 1 1
11 How attractive this design method will look on your resume 2 1 3
12 Ease of product use 3 2 1
13 Suitability for presentation at the Senior Design Expo 3 2 1
Total 35 32 27

VIII. Design and Production Cost Analysis

Environmental and access control systems in the marketplace are marked up significantly. The consumer electronics market has benefited from fierce competition. Consumer electronics are more affordable and powerful than ever before. There is not as much competition in the building automation markets. Simple devices are marked up significantly. Each controller will cost between $60 - $80 to manufacture. If the user wants to make the sensors wireless then they will have buy them separately which will run from $30 - $60 each to make depending on range of the sensor. Even with a 100% or 200% markup, our device will be significantly cheaper than the other devices in this space.

IX. Task Allocation and Schedule

Week Project Phase Task Responsibility
Beginning of winter break Ordering Parts ordering and receiving parts Karl
Winter Break Demo Construction Create A door with electric strike plate Michael
Week 1 - 2 Prototype Construction Create working prototype Aissar and Karl
Week 3 Prototype Construction Write drivers for Weigand Reader Akeem
Week 4 Prototype Construction Write drivers for temperature sensors Akeem
Week 5 Evaluate Wireless Modules Purchase and evaluate wireless modules Michael
Week 6 Wireless Prototype Write software for prototype wireless nodes Michael
Week 7 Server Evaluation Evaluate software frameworks for web front and backends Karl
Week 8 Security Backend Write code for security backend Karl
Week 9 Environmental Backend Write code for environmental backend Karl
Week 10 Demo Construction Create A door with electric strike plate Michael
Week 11 Demo Construction Create A door with electric strike plate Michael
Week 12 Testing Bring everything together for testing Aissar
Week 13 Testing Continue improving code so everything can talk to each other Karl and Aissar
Week 14 Debugging and Testing Continue improving code so everything can talk to each other Group
Week 15 Web Improvements Complete web backend and interface Karl
Week 16 Final Testing Complete final report and create display for Expo Group

X. Simulation/Modeling Results

For our project we will be doing a lot of software development, and we will be using a beaglebone to do all the logic control. For example, we will be using a beaglebone to read the data from the temperature sensors and to do all the computations. As a result, we won’t be analyzing any analog signals. However, we might have to do analysis on our power supply we just haven’t gotten to it yet.

XI. Description of the User Interface

The controllers will have diagnostic LEDs that will indicate valid communication to the management server. A green LED will indicate that there is valid communication, a red led will indicate that there is bad or no communication.

The web interface, hosted by a central server, will allow remote configuration, monitoring, and control of the system. This interface can be hosted on the local network, or sit on the public internet. This option is left to the end user.

The interface will scale between smartphone, tablet, and desktop browsers to allow a variety of users and devices to connect to the system. Standard web authentication and security methods will be used to secure controllers, doors, and the data logged. Interface traffic will be encrypted via https.

The wireless sensors will have an interface of their own. The coordinator will have 2x16 LCD display with 5 push buttons. The display will give the user the ability to monitor the temperatures of the wireless sensors and the ability to add/subtract sensors from the network.

Access Table

User Door Access Time Status
AkeemFront DoorThu May 1 23:54:46 2014Access Denied
KarlFront DoorThu May 1 23:54:41 2014Access Granted
KarlFront DoorThu May 1 23:54:39 2014Access Granted
MikeFront DoorMon Apr 21 01:47:10 2014Access Denied
MikeFront DoorMon Apr 21 01:47:06 2014Access Denied


XII. Design Changes Made During ECE 397

The design was simplified by removing relays. Darlington drivers with built in kick-back protection diodes were used to operate the solenoids within the electric strike plates.

The implementation of Zigbee modules enabled the use of wireless sensing nodes. These nodes operated in a low power mode to send temperature updates to the server on a user specified interval.

XIV. Additional Issues

Economic: The only economic issue that might affected the manufacturer of this design would be the cost of a wafer when making each test and final PCB. Since the amount of components one can fit on a wafer continually increases by Moore’s law, the availability of funds to supply silicon wafers will be an important factor for the development stage of the design.

Environmental: The only problems will arise from the disposal of PCB’s and the battery/ power supply. This project can be considered a green design since there are no major impacts to the environment. During the testing phase, the solder will have traces of lead but during a large scale manufacturing process the design will be lead free.

Global: Since this design serves mostly as an environment monitoring system, it will be compatible in any location the user intends. This implies it can be used both locally and globally.

Ethical: Our design displays both ethical and professional responsibility since we will not only develop but also implement the design through our personal knowledge and experience.

Health & safety: There are no health and safety concerns over the manufacturing of this product.

Quality / Reliability: The estimated life of the product is about seven years which is sufficient for long-term use as well as the goals intended for the use of the product.

Manufacturability: Our current design utilizes various existing components and processes making it manufacturable by already-existing methods.

Sustainability / Maintainability: The product will be maintained by each respective user and software/firmware upgrades are distributed via the internet making them easily attainable.

XIII. Conclusion

In conclusion, this project was challenging for us to build. Each of us gained experience working with devices and techniques we have never done before. For example, writing server applications, designing websites, PCB design and layout and even the use of the beaglebone are all areas we had not previously worked with much. However, we welcome the challenge and expect to have fun. We have a solid plan to get all of our work done and we have broken our project into parts and have divided our work as well. Doing this project we have all learned how to better work in groups, and how to apply what we have learned in the classroom to a real world problem.

XVI. Team Member Background and Contributions

Karl Swanson - CE

Project manager and architect

Aissar Alanasweh - EE

Akeem Olaosebikan - CE

Firmware and Software

Michael Gray - CE

Wireless Sensors

Appendix A

Printed Circuit Board Schematic and Bill of Materials

Click image for PDF

Click image for PDF

Bill of Materials

All components available at quantity from Digi-Key
PCB manufactured by OSH Park
Reference Designators Description Digikey Part Number Price Each Quantity Total
IC1 Voltage Regulator LM1117MPX-5.0/NOPBCT-ND $1.10 1 $1.10
U1 ATMEGA328 ATMEGA328-AURCT-ND $3.51 1 $3.51
U2 Voltage-Level Translator 296-21929-1-ND $1.69 1 $1.69
ULN1 ULN2803 Darlington Driver 296-15777-1-ND $0.90 1 $0.90
Crystal 16MHz- XTAL-08900 490-1198-1-ND $0.48 1 $0.48
R1 Resistor 10k 0805 311-10KARCT-ND $0.01 1 $0.01
C1, C2, C5, C6, C7 Capacitor .1uF 0805 311-1361-1-ND $0.01 3 $0.04
C3,C4 47uf cap PCE3890CT-ND $0.55 1 $0.55
S1, S2, S3, S4, Vin Screw Terminals A98159-ND $1.04 5 $5.20
D1 SMB Diode ES2DFSCT-ND $0.49 1 $0.49
D2 Green 1206 LED 516-2825-1-ND $0.37 1 $0.37
D3, D4, D5, D6 Red 1206 LED 160-1456-1-ND $0.36 4 $1.44
R3, R4, R5, R6 Resistor 220 311-220ARCT-ND $0.01 4 $0.03
PCB $10.00 1 $10.00
Total $26.56

Appendix B

Block Diagram

Click image for PDF

Appendix C

The Django central management server will run on a standard Apache web, and MySQL database server. This software and its dependent libraries can be installed with the package manager found within many linux distributions.

The beaglebone creates a physical link between the internet and low level hardware like the custom PCB. The device will work with the supplied software once pyserial and the adafruit beaglebone libraries are installed. These can also be installed using the built in package manager.

The system can be managed from any standard web browser, including tablets, phones, and computers. The software should be cross-browser compatible, though WebKit based browsers such as Chrome and Safari are recommended.

Appendix D

Download code for the web system and firmware