Edward J. Coyle, Ph.D.

Integration of Research and Education
Georgia Institute of Technology
Recruited: 2008

Dr. Coyle's research is in three primary areas:

Sensor Networks: The acquisition, communication and processing of data to make accurate decisions and estimates about phenomena of interest. Relevant technical areas include: sensor networks, computer networks, signal processing and statistical inference.

Education and Research: The integration of research and education via large-scale, long-term, vertically-integrated projects for undergraduates in engineering and computer science. The design, deployment and evaluation of the impact of multimedia systems supporting distributed education and research.
Service Learning: Design and evaluation of social entrepreneurship and service learning programs for engineering education.


Advances in materials, embedded systems, and RF technology have led to the creation of small, inexpensive, untethered sensors. When combined with distributed communication and computing systems, these new sensors enable the instrumentation of large, complex physical systems -- such as watersheds, farms, cities, roads, buildings, stadiums and homes. The optimization of algorithms to gather, communicate and process the enormous amounts of data these sensors collect is essential to the ultimate goal of producing knowledge about and appropriate actions for these systems.

The success of this research effort also depends upon the ability to assemble large, long-term, distributed teams of faculty, staff, graduate students and undergraduate students who can (i) design and develop these sensor networks; (ii) engage with relevant organizations to deploy and test their prototypes; and, when feasible, (iii) commercialize the new systems they have developed.

Dr. Coyle's team has been developing a heterogeneous wireless network (3G, WiFi, and ZigBee) to gather and deliver multimedia information about athletic events, such as football and basketball games, to fans and staff during the game. This includes "infotainment" data, such as video clips of game highlights and real-time game stats, and safety and security related data, including audio and images, from key areas of the stadium. This testbed serves as a research platform for theoretical and experimental work on the optimization of sensor systems and wireless networks. The deployment of this system in Bobby Dodd Stadium at Georgia Tech began during the Fall 2009 football season.

Choosing Georgia

Georgia Tech, the city of Atlanta, and the State of Georgia offer a unique combination of excellence in research and education, an entrepreneurial attitude and environment, and a high level of cooperation between industry, the state and universities.