|dc.description.abstract||GSI Ltd designs and manufactures low volume high cost specialist Test and Measurement Equipment, mainly concentrating on systems for use by the cosmetics industry, and for use in prototype vehicles. The FUSE project involved the design, evaluation and production of a micro-controller based data acquisition system to log data from, and to control, a Skin Rheometer used by the cosmetics industry
to determine the effectiveness of skin creams, which work by changing the hydration levels in the skin. Hydration levels can be inferred by measuring the change in skin elasticity. The system measures the elasticity of human skin in-vivo using a micromechanical motor/lead screw arrangement that moves a lateral probe attached to the hand or forearm of a subject, under force feedback closed loop control.
The existing product used a PC, the new design uses four PC104 cards;
· an analogue card with extensive facilities,
· a PC replacement card with 486 and 20Mb memory,
· a VGA interface card, and
· a display card with full colour camcorder type LCD display.
The budget was 57,000 ECUs and duration 12 months. The project started on 1st March 1996 and was completed on 31st March 1997. The payback period was 12 months and the return on investment 3- fold over the life of the product.||en