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DCET students develop car-location device

Karachi, March 31, 2008: Atif Faseeh, a student at the Dawood College of Engineering and Technology (DCET), has been working with other students on a project called 'Car-positioning using Global Positioning Systems (GPS) and Global System for Mobile communication (GSM)' in a bid to allow people to use their cell phones to track their valuables, especially cars.

A team of five students, including Zain, Zehra Asif and Tafseer, has worked on this project with DCET Department of Electronics Chairman Prof. Ashfaque Wali. The project uses GPS and GSM technology to allow users to find the exact location of their vehicles using the Short Messaging Service (SMS) to display the location data on the screen of a cell phone.

For example, Jail Chowrangi is identified via satellite as 23.04 degrees East and 25.04 degrees North, which the average person cannot understand but the device adds names of locations to make this information easily accessible.

To make this possible, the device must be connected to at least four satellites at a time, explained Faseeh. A GPS receiver will be installed inside the car while the subscriber carries a cell phone. When they dial a code on the cell phone, the user receives an SMS from the GPS receiver telling him the exact location of the car. The cell phone will be able to store the data received for further use and archiving.

The project will be presented to the DCET jury in April. It is being completed at a cost of Rs 30,000 and is expected to be marketed in two months. The objectives are to develop a vehicle-tracking application with the following features: acquire vehicle position using GPS, send to and receive data in the control room, display this geo-spatial data (longitude, latitude, speed, time, etc) on a digital map.

Prof. Ashfaque Wali said that DCET expects every student to generate innovative ideas, especially those that serve people. Final-year students are divided into groups of five and are assigned a project, which they have to complete within a year. In 2008, students are engaged in 32 projects, half of which have been sponsored by national and multinational enterprises. These projects are approved, evaluated and supervised by a panel of six dedicated professors. He said that a non-conducive environment and a lack of research facilities in Pakistan force many intelligent students to settle in western countries.

While the Higher Education Commission of Pakistan has allowed the purchase of equipment necessary for research projects, students are not offered any stipend. Neither the federal nor the provincial governments allocate funds for talented students, DCET students said. Daily Times
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