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THE DREAM GREEN. May 06-03. Abstract.

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May 06-03


The purpose of this project is to finalize the automation of the Dream Green deformable putting green. The break of the putting surface is currently changed by using motors to slide wedges which was implemented by last year’s senior design team. These motors move the wedges under a number of bars that support the surface. The original Dream Green (the version currently for sale) is operated by manually sliding these wedges to raise/lower the surface. The ends of the surface may also be raised and lowered by the same wedge system for increased difficulty. The goal of this project is to complete the control systems necessary to automate these adjustments. The Dream Green is currently being used for both putting practice and competition.


  • Problem Statement
  • The goal of this project is to complete the basic automated functions of the Dream Green putting surface. The objective is to produce a final product that is easily replicated, allowing the client to begin manufacturing and selling of the automated Dream Green.
  • Operating Environment
  • Indoors or other controlled environments
  • Away from direct UV light
  • Flat level surface
  • Intended Users and Uses
  • Sports bars and facilities, homes, cruise ships, special events
  • Recreational tournaments, games, or putting practice
  • Recreation, competition, and professional uses
  • All ages and all ability levels
  • Assumptions
  • No additional loads during adjustments
  • Manufactured sections of Dream Green will be 4 feet long
  • Limitations
  • Automation must not increase the complexity of system
  • Mechanical systems must fit within current Dream Green frame
  • Automation system should be reliable and durable
  • Additional retail price of automation must be under $1,000
  • Wedges must be used for height adjustment
  • Expected End Products
  • An automated system to adjust green contours electronically
  • Preprogrammed holes that can be changed on demand
  • A connection to a personal computer via USB for changing presets
  • The ability to store and retrieve manually created settings in memory
  • A user’s manual describing the use of the automation system
  • A fully operational prototype

Approach and Considerations

  • Proposed Approach
  • Review of past design team’s documentation
  • Develop project plan
  • Force analysis of side and end lift assemblies
  • Mechanical, software, and electrical design
  • Construct prototype
  • Debug and troubleshoot system
  • End product testing and analysis by client
  • Redesign per client request
  • Technologies Considered
  • Microcontroller communication protocols (Controller Area Network - CAN)
  • Sizing specification of motors, inserts, threads, etc.
  • Material properties for construction
  • Testing Considerations
  • Microcontroller communications
  • Software debugging
  • Motor protection circuit
  • Loading conditions

Deformable Putting Surface

Wedge pushes surface



Motor drives wedge

Wedge design patented by client

Project Requirements

Estimated Schedule and Resources

  • Design Objectives
  • Finalize controller and computer communications
  • Implement motor control and positioning circuits
  • Design user input and display systems
  • Develop circuitry to protect the motors from overloading
  • Design Constraints
  • Must use less than 15 Amps of AC current and be power by a standard 120V circuit
  • Time required to change positions less than manual method
  • All parts should fit inside current Dream Green dimensions
  • No individual shall be on the green while it is adjusting
  • Additional cost will be less than $1,000
  • Functional Requirements
  • Provide smooth, efficient wedge movement
  • Allow operation by random and specific wedge settings or preset wedge positions
  • A display indicating motor movement and position
  • Project Milestones
  • Problem Definition
  • Technology Considerations and Selection
  • End-product design, prototyping, testing, and demonstration



The next generation Dream Green automates the deformable putting surface which is easier and faster than its predecessor. The Dream Green has been developed to meet the client’s needs and fulfill design objectives. The additional features and functionality will allow for a more marketable product for our client.

General Information


Past Dream Green teams

Mr. Chuck Juel

Dr. Lamont and Prof. Patterson

Faculty Advisors

Dr. John Lamont

Prof. Ralph Patterson III

Team members

David Moline EE Ryan Emerson CprE

David Goldberg EE Brian Wicks CprE

Mevan Vijithakumara ME


Charles Juel

Stout, IA