NUSwan Robot: To Monitor Water Quality
To test the water quality in a reservoir, workers typically take a boat around to collect samples. But that’s a painfully slow way to collect data, especially if there’s a sudden outbreak or contamination. A team in Singapore is working on an alternative approach: GPS-guided robots that take measurements and wirelessly transmit results back to researchers—and look like swans to blend in with the environment. Called NUSwan, the project is led by researchers at the Environmental Research Institute and the Tropical Marine Science Institute, both part of the National University of Singapore. They have been testing the propellor-driven robots in Singapore’s Pandan Reservoir, which is already popular among remote-controlled-boat hobbyists. Researchers can remote control a swan like toy boat, but the idea is to program it with some instructions and then let it wander around, testing on its own. GPS can help ensure a robot doesn’t check the same area over and over again.
- Country: Singapore
- Company: National University of Singapore