Researchers at the National University of Singapore have come up with a novel and discreet way to monitor water quality, especially in urban areas: robot swans.
The New Smart Water Assessment Network (shortened with the university’s initials to NUSwan) is an ongoing research project that uses small self-driving watercraft to test a number of standard water quality metrics and watch for pollutants and contaminants. The robots are disguised as white swans, which helps them blend into the environment.
Each bird-bot has a GPS receiver for navigation. That allows the bots to methodically move around a body of water and make sure different areas get tested without unnecessarily duplicating data points, while also letting them return on their own to a charging station — all of which minimizes the time researchers need to spend on direct remote control and maintenance. Data can be collected by Wi-Fi whenever the bots come in range of the shore.
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.