AiS Challenge Team Interim


Team Number: 071

School Name: Southwest Secondary Learning Center

Area of Science: Engeneering

Project Title: Ventsim



Project Definition: We are converting an existing mine ventilation program called Ventsim from an older programming language known as FORTRAN 77 into the newer and more accessible language of JavaScript. The existing program as become obsolete considering that entering input into the program requires the use of punch cards. The program is also able to be used in the aspect of planning ventilation systems for many other situations other than mines such as large buildings and any other instance that might require an extensive ventilation system. Even though the program is very old it is can hardly be considered out of date, where the uses for the language the program was written in have diminished, the need for the a program such as Ventsim are needed now just as much as the were when the program was first created.

Project Approach: We will convert the existing code into interactive, web based JavaScript program with a web interface for data input is the end goal. We must take the original program and reverse engineer it. We plan to take apart the program and recode it from scratch using a newer language. As every spoken language has its own unique grammatical rules so does every programming language. Because of this we can not simply translate the program line by line. We will have to first understand not just the language the program is written in but how the program works and in order to do that we must understand how mine ventilation works.

Progress to Date: We have encountered a lot of unanticipated challenges in the course of this project. Because FORTRAN 77 is so out of date it was very hard to find a tutorial that we could learn the language from. We have learned the language FORTRAN 77 language and we have met with the original programmer of Ventsim and have been given a crash course in mine ventilation. Translating the program into JavaScript has proven more of a challenge than initially anticipated but it is after all a Computer ?Challenge? so we are still trying to advance our progress on the project. In light of the fact that this project has confronted us with the amount of obstacles and will continue doing so until we complete it we are planning on turning it into a two year project.

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