What happened after the exploration festival?

After the long exploration festival, we figured out two ideas, the Shopogram, and the WOBOT. After receiving feedback from some experts, the choice which idea we are going to explore fell on the WOBOT, a small earthworm like robot that should help to improve the overfertilization.

The next task was, to write a paper, about our idea. It contains a lot of information of the idea, we have discovered so far, but also open questions. Each of us wrote on another part of this paper, over the time of Christmas and new year (Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, by the way!). 

Of course, the paper started with an abstract, about its purpose. In the next part, we described the societal challenge. This part explains several problems, our society is confronted with, and how the SDG that is the base for whole project, should help, to solve these problems. Overfertilization is one of the biggest problems, of our time.  The high use of fertilizer, especially the nitrogen inside it is a growing danger in every part of nature. In the soil, it causes over acidification, in the water it causes eutrophication, and nitrogen oxides that are escaping into the atmosphere are more dangerous than regular greenhouse gases. All these are damaging for the ecosystems and the biodiversity.

The next step is about the conceptual design. The main questions about the WOBOT should be answered in this part (Who, what, why, where, when and how). Here are the main information about the WOBOTs function. The robotic worm is moving through the soil and delivers fertilizer to plants.  In addition, there is a network of some helpers, like the WOBOT Kindergarten. It can be described as big taxi for the WOBOTs, taking them over longer distances, to help them reaching a place by time. The third main component of the network are soil sensors. They are like eyes and ears for the Kindergartens. They measuring all of the properties, like concentration of fertilizer, moisture and temperature. With these information, the whole system, called WOBOTics, shall perform a need based fertilization, to avoid an overuse. To fulfill, the WOBOT, and its helpers should use different types of technology. So we also shall describe which technology we are going to use, and also which CERN-technology has a possible use for this challenge.

The last main part of the paper is the description of the value of our idea. We should not just say, what we are planning to develop, but also why. A good idea should always have a value for the society. In this part, we should explain the relation to the societal challenge, who can take advantage, and what we think a about the results of the idea. At last, there should be a conclusion, together with the open questions and possible ideas, we are already have, but not realized.


End of Phase One!

With this paper, the long first phase of the inno.space challenge will come to an end and the second phase begins. In this phase, we are instructed to realize our idea, to bring the WOBOT to live!


Next steps

To develop the WOBOT, we shall collect more information to the task, we are working on. One part of the research is to interview different stakeholders, mainly farmers.


In memory to our deceased second idea

The Shopogram was the alternative of our exploration, but it wasn’t the idea, we wanted to explore.