Crop Analysis Made Easier With Swinging Robots

The Problem

Category: Health/Energy

As the population continues to grow, so too does the need for larger farm production.  Larger farm production requires constant monitoring to alert the farmers when to take actions with their crops.  Humans who manually monitor crops are both inefficient and incidentally destroy land/crops.  Robotic ground monitoring technology still cannot easily overcome simple obstacles such as mud or rocks, and monitoring flying drones are not energy efficient.

The Tech

Tarzan is a chimp-like robot, created by the Georgia Institute of Technology, that can swing across a wire.

Tarzan’s creators envision farms with wires hanging above the rows of crops.  Tarzan would swing up and down the wires, monitoring the health of each crop in real-time.  Tarzan could then send back images and advanced analysis to a farmer’s computer to identify when a plant needs more water, fertilizer, or other treatment.

Tarzan’s creators want to build a solar-powered version that could allow Tarzan to live amongst crops for months at a time.

Tarzan robot can swing around on overhead wires

Article Title: Tarzan-inspired Robot Swings Like A Champion
Website: Discover Magazine
Link: http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/d-brief/2017/04/13/swinging-robot/#.WcxfKsh96Ul

The Stakeholders Using The Tech

Farmers

Growers

Plowmen

Farm suppliers

Crop transporters

The First Three Steps

1. The first step remains completing the build of a Tarzan that can efficiently swing to and from multiple wires, that is weather-resistant, that can successfully transmit photos/information to a computer, and that is cost-effective.

2. The creators need to test the prototype, whether on a simulated farm or partner with a farmer willing to build the overhead wiring system.

3. The creators need to collect data from the tests, make modifications to the robot, probably run some more tests, and ultimately attempt to assess whether Tarzan is more valuable than alternative solutions.  Then they can consider marketing the robot.

UNI: gm2778


Comment on FitBit for Cows! Agtech that can save society Billions

“Also noteworthy is that this tech lowers the farming entry barrier. Sure there’s an upfront investment in the tech itself. However, now a farmer doesn’t need a strong agricultural background as they just have to interpret the data collected by the smartmoo. I imagine the smartmoo will even cut out the need for manual analysis and just present the farmer with action items.”

Liam – Improving the LifeCycle of iPhones

1. Sustainability Problem: Waste

There are billions of technology products and they are constantly being replaced by by new or different technologies, but in a world with limited resources and over-flowing landfills, we can not discard all of our old gadgets to landfills and rely on freshly sourced materials to build the replacements. Improper disposal of technology can be dangerous due to toxic chemicals in the battery, such as cobalt and lithium.

2. Technology: Liam The Robot

Article:
Apple Just Unveiled a Blazing Fast iPhone Recycling Robot

by Lacey Cook, Published 3/21/2016 on inhabitat at http://inhabitat.com/apple-unveils-iphone-recycling-robot-and-launches-major-apple-renew-initiative/apple-liam-iphone-recycling-robot-1/

  • In March, Apple introduced a new member of the Apple Renew program, Liam, a robotic arm
  • Liam is programmed specifically to dismantle iPhones into reusable parts and safely recycle toxic materials found in the battery such as lithium, and cobalt
  • Once dismantled, the parts will be broken down further to be reintroduced into the global supply chain
  • Apple provides pre-paid package labels to customers returning old or unwanted devices, they will also receive a gift card if the returned device has any value

3. Organizational Stakeholders

  • Apple
  • Toxic waste management facilities
  • Landfill facilities
  • First generation resource/material providers for technology
  • Current, potential, and future Apple customers

4. Deployment

  • Increase public awareness of Apple Renew, the company’s reuse and recycling program
  • Incentivize or require users to return old products
  • Share Liam technology and programming with other technology manufacturers or disposal organizations to increase the total impact

See also:

http://appleinsider.com/articles/16/03/21/apple-teases-liam-iphone-recycling-robot-as-part-of-environmental-initiative

 

SMARTGRIDS

smart grid-1

  • Technology:

Smart Grid is the Next GEN power infrastructure that incorporates major technology components like smart meters, sensors, wireless communications, software etc. to improve efficiency and optimizes consumption. It also enables the integration of sustainable energy solutions like solar, wind etc. by sending energy back into the grid.

  • Problem:

Smart Grids reduces the dependency and use of fossil fuels by enhancing the inefficiencies in energy consumption and leveraging seamless integration and use of sustainable energy solutions like solar and wind. For ex. By using Smart Meters and Sensors, extra energy obtained from solar panels can be sent back to the grid.

  • Stakeholders:
    1. Home, Commercial and Industrial users
    2. Electric Power Companies
    3. Governments
  • Implementation:
    1. Develop simple, cost effective and easy to install kits
    2. Incentivize power companies to offer such green solutions
    3. Government tax deductions similar to electric cars

Sources:

 

  • ar3354

 

 

Himalayan Hydropower and Gross National Happiness (GNP)

Green Power Development Project – Construction of Dagachhu Hydropower Development in Bhutan

1) The Technology In Use ===  Hydroelectric Power Generation

The tiny nation of Bhutan, nestled high in the Himalayan Mountains, is poised to become an energy superpower.  Its prime position between two populous and growing nations – China and India – means it has the opportunity to utilize vast natural resources of flowing water and cutting edge technology of hydroelectric dams.  In a quest to attract clean, green and sustainable businesses, the nation continues to construct mega dams including:

Tala hydroelectric project (2007): located on the Wangchu River; gravity dam technology generates 3.821 GWh power solely for India and is delivered through transmission lines.

Chhukha hydroelectric project (1970s): located on the Wangchhu River; gravity dam technology generates 1.700 GWh.

Kurichhu hydroelectric project (2001): located on the Kuri Chhu River; gravity dam technology generates 0.379 GWh.

Basochhu hydroelectric project (Plant I & Plant II, 1997-2004): located near Wangdue Phodrang; dam technology generates 0.334 GWh.

Dagachhu hydroelectric project (Feb. 2015): located on Dagachhu River; gravity dam technology generates power for India.  First cross-border CDM of the UNFCCC.

Buhtan

2) The Sustainability Problem ===

Population:  China and India represent 20% and 17% of the world’s population, respectively.  At the current growth rate, India is expected to surpass China in the next few decades.

Economic Growth: As more people in India rise out of poverty, per capita energy consumption increases.

Clean Energy: Coal, kerosene and wood burning are the common methods of energy generation in poor households and small villages where electricity is not available. Hydroelectric power is a renewable energy source which does not emit harmful GHGs.

Ecological Preservation: Harnessing hydro electric power while maintaining national commitment to environmental sustainability.

3) The Technology Stakeholders ===

Contractors (designers, workers, operators)

Suppliers of component parts

Government of Bhutan

India Consumers

Individual residents/consumers

Bhutan Utility subsidiary

India Utility distributor

4) Process for Technology Implementation ===

Identify needs of India consumers/population

Determine economic efficiency/profitability; cost of tech vs ROI

Educate/Inform Bhutan residents of impact on natural environment

Monitor energy output from plant and consumption in India

Foster collaboration between nations under multilateral organization

Share new technology and best practices