Having family that are gardening enthusiasts, we want to ensure that they can continue to pursue their passions even after they become less able. Simply Plant was designed to make plant irrigation as convenient as possible. Gone on vacation for a few weeks? A few months?? A YEAR?!? Hiring a a plant sitter can cost you an unnecessary amount of money while you're gone, why not avoid the fee and the hassle? For any irrigation circumstance, Simply Plant provides an astounding amount of versatility in it's use, and is making communities better, one plant at a time.
What Does It Do?
Simply Plant is an autonomous irrigation bot. When the bot detects low moisture levels, depending on the type of plant and it's preset watering needs, as well as customizable watering options, it will come and water that particular area that needs watering the most. It is most effective when being used in gardens with organized rows for each specific type of plant.
How It Was Built?
Simply Plant was built mainly using the Arduino platform. An Arduino Uno was used as the main CPU and other components included soil moisture sensors, stepper motors and integration with Google Home in order to set commands to water certain plants, as well as receive data on them.
Challenges We Faced
We ran into many challenges at the beginning of making this project, given the complexity of the mechanisms involved, and having only 24 hours to build, we had to cut out many of the more complex mechanisms at the beginning in order to save time, such as our original movement mechanism which involved a linear slide. For our final design, the math behind the movement of the nozzle was incredibly complex and hard to figure out, which we had to seek some guidance in solving.
We are incredibly proud of the progress that we made in 24 hours, as given the complexity of this project, we knew going into the hackathon that this would be an incredibly ambitious project, but we were incredibly eager to get our idea out there. We're very impressed with our quick thinking and problem solving ability throughout the event, throughout the event there were many people who were very impressed with the design of our mechanisms and our idea. We are very proud of what we did in the time frame and are looking forward to pursuing with this idea in the future.
What We Learned
Throughout the hackathon we learned a lot about developing our skills, not just as engineers and developers, but as entrepreneurs and creative thinkers. We were given a lot of great advice about the implementation of our product by senior mentors and judges, as well as strategic approaches to solving problems. This really helped us as we cam all apply it in fields that we would like to pursue in the future.
Given the correct resources that were unfortunately not available to us given the 24-hour time frame of PCHacks 2019, we could greatly maximize the product's efficiency in terms of it's movement and watering capabilities. We'd also like to give it a much better user interface to work with, so it can be more easily used by the public. Overall, we'd like to take the product out of testing and prototyping, and bring it to an accessible platform, that everyone can use.
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