Development of Remote-Controlled Laboratories for Distance Education

D. Lieberman and T. Cheung (USA)


Remote-controlled laboratories, photonics, physics


At Queensborough Community College, with the support of the National Science Foundation (Advanced Technological Education grant awards #DUE – 9752061 and DUE – 0402332), we have addressed the issues of distance learning in laboratory courses. We have adapted courses for our Laser and Fiber-Optics Engineering Technology Program for distance learning. The “problem” of the laboratory is solved by remote controlled laboratory equipment. We have completed the work on course materials in physical optics, lasers and fiber optics and near completion on materials for our geometric optics course. Course materials include interactive multimedia textbooks and laboratory manuals along with the remote-controlled laboratory exercises. The remote-controlled exercises are “real” experiments with “real’ data as opposed to simulations. The real nature of the exercises allows for the unexpected, which occurs in any laboratory situation. Remote-controlled laboratory exercises include many topics in optics, lasers and fibers optics. As course materials were developed they were tested at a remote site, Suffolk County Community College.

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