Overpopulation in cities across the globe is becoming, and will continue to be, a major issue. With populations in urban areas increasing, issues such as access to potable water, proper sewage treatment and food security & availability increase in severity over time. As larger and larger expanses of rural land is lost to Urban Sprawl, arable land becomes increasingly scarce. However, with the ever-expanding population of these cities, more and more food is needed and there seems to exist a catch-22.
However, a feasible solution to this dilemma is food production via large scale "Aquaponics" systems. "Aquaponics" systems cycle water from a fish pond, to a bacteria based "Decomposer" which releases nutrients from fish waste material. This nutrient-rich water is then run into grow beds to nourish food crops before being returned to the fish pond. Another possible solution is the “Omni Processor” which uses domestic (human) sewage and, via a process similar to that of "Aquaponics", produces potable water. The margin of error for such systems is, obviously, quite small as salmonella, dysentery, E. coli and other gastric diseases would easily become endemic otherwise. "Aquaponics" systems, as well as the Bill Gates funded "Omni Processor", could solve these issues in the short term but with no feedback or proper control systems in place, these systems will fail!
I have created an easily-replicable machine which shall be placed at various nodes in an urban setting such as at "Aquaponic" system sites, at water treatment facilities and at water sources. This revolutionary device is solar/(18650)battery powered with an integrated DC/DC converter for off-grid operation. Data from these machines are transferred to a dedicated WAMP server and data received from this server may be used to toggle on-site actuators such as valves and pumps. Data from this server can be easily accessed from anywhere in the world using the provided App. If anomalies in water temperature, pH, Electrical Conductivity, turbidity or Oxidative/Reductive Potential are observed, alerts are sent out via the onboard speaker, onboard display, via the App and optionally by text message or call using the integrated GSM module.
What truly makes this system outstanding is the vast improvement over conventional methods. Currently, to carry out such analysis, water samples would have to be collected and sent to a lab where tests concerning each analytic parameter would be carried out sequentially, slowly and inefficiently in contrast to the simultaneous, rapid and efficient testing accomplished using this new system. This system would allow for a process which would have taken days or even weeks, to be completed in a matter of seconds while eliminating human-error through automation. Hypothetically speaking, if there are contaminants in the water feeding into a city, conventional methods could only confirm this after the fact. On the contrary, this system could prevent any contaminated water from reaching the population downstream by automatically shutting off valves once these contaminants are detected - thus potentially saving a great deal of lives.
The machine works by first drawing in a water sample via a series of pumps. The probes are then removed from their storage solutions and lowered into the sampling chamber. Once sampling is complete, the probes then move over to the cleaning chamber where they are rinsed before returning to their storage positions. They are then placed back into solution for storage. The water is released from the sampling chamber once sampling is complete. Readings are to be taken at regular intervals (currently 15 minutes), otherwise, the system is in power-saving mode.
Reading for degrees in both Mechanical and Electrical Engineering in Taiwan, I was able to source, create and/or assemble all the required components very cost-effectively; predominantly from right here in my city of Tainan. Most parts and relevant factories lie within a 15-minute radius from my university. The machine’s frame is made up of readily-available 2020 extruded aluminum and I can easily create Injection moulds for the 3D-printed plastic features that I designed for mass-production via Plastic Injection Moulding. Circuit and power supply designs are also my forte, given my expertise. Thus, manufacturability is a non-issue. Fasteners, electronics and other miscellaneous components are easily sourced in large quantities and so this machine may be replicated many times over in order to produce a Node-based, Green-Energy powered, Urban, Remote Water Quality Analyzer and Monitoring System.
By the year 2050, around the globe, there will be increases in demand and pollution in cities. However, the everyday citizen would remain unaware of the possibility of water stresses that he or she could potentially face. This blissful ignorance will be due in no small part to the ubiquity of this Solar Powered Remote Water Quality Analyzer & Monitoring Network. The global impact of this device, when used in tandem with “Omni Processors” and “Aquaponics” systems will be essential to life and truly revolutionary. However, its impact will go largely unnoticed due to the fact that these issues would have been solved over 30 years early via an entry in the Keysight “Smart Water” Challenge.