James Dyson Award winner and runners-up 2011

Engineering, not magic: the 2011 winner of the James Dyson Award extracts water from thin air. Airdrop is a low cost, self powered, and easy to install solution to the problems of growing crops in arid regions.

Inspired by Australia’s worst drought in a century, Edward Linacre from Swinburne University of Technology in Melbourne, turned to nature to find ways of capturing moisture from air. Edward studied the Namib beetle, an ingenious species which lives in one of the driest places on earth. With half an inch of rain per year, the beetle can only survive by consuming the dew it collects on the hydrophilic skin of its back in the early mornings.

Airdrop borrows this concept, working on the principle that even the driest air contains water molecules which can be extracted by lowering the air’s temperature to the point of condensation. It pumps air through a network of underground pipes, to cool it to the point at which the water condenses. Delivering water directly to the roots of plants.

Edward’s research suggests that 11.5 millilitres of water can be harvested from every cubic meter of air in the driest of deserts. Further iterations of his design will increase the yield of Airdrop. A further £10,000 has also be awarded to Edward’s university department to support other young engineers keen to follow in his footsteps.


Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.

Join 28,000+ makers on Adafruit’s Discord channels and be part of the community! http://adafru.it/discord

Have an amazing project to share? The Electronics Show and Tell is every Wednesday at 7pm ET! To join, head over to YouTube and check out the show’s live chat – we’ll post the link there.

Join us every Wednesday night at 8pm ET for Ask an Engineer!

Follow Adafruit on Instagram for top secret new products, behinds the scenes and more https://www.instagram.com/adafruit/

CircuitPython – The easiest way to program microcontrollers – CircuitPython.org


Maker Business — Peloton to break ground at a new manufacturing campus in Ohio

Wearables — Tear it all apart

Electronics — Disable unused channels!

Python for Microcontrollers — Python on Microcontrollers Newsletter: CircuitPython tops Tom’s Hardware Best RP2040 Boards 2021 and more #Python #Adafruit #CircuitPython @micropython @ThePSF

Adafruit IoT Monthly — Toddler Clock, Predictive Weather Station, and more!

Microsoft MakeCode — Arcade Beginner Skillmap

EYE on NPI — Maxim’s Himalaya uSLIC Step-Down Power Module #EyeOnNPI @maximintegrated @digikey

New Products – Adafruit Industries – Makers, hackers, artists, designers and engineers! — New Products 06/09/21 feat. #Adafruit #Trinkey #QT2040 – RP2040 USB Key with Stemma QT!

Get the only spam-free daily newsletter about wearables, running a "maker business", electronic tips and more! Subscribe at AdafruitDaily.com !



1 Comment

  1. The post was missing a link to the awards site … http://jamesdysonaward.org/

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.