Specialism News

Monitor air pollution with this one neat trick...

Both Brexit and the Covid-19 pandemic forced us to put our Erasmus project on hold. Thankfully we were able to resume this year, albeit remotely, to continue the wonderful scientific and cultural exchange between students at APS and those from two schools in Denmark and Norway.
Equipped with BBC micro: bits, CO2 sensing modules, laptops and oodles of creativity, fourteen of our students worked diligently with others 2,000km away in Mo i Rana, Norway, to construct seven Bluetooth-connected air monitoring devices with their own power sources. They collected measurements in their respective local areas to draw comparisons about air quality, pollution and the detrimental effects on our physiology, before finally presenting their findings.

This was a triumph of citizen science, off-the-shelf engineering and what is now possible with remote teaching and collaboration. Well done to all! Here are some quotations from our students involved in the project:

I've always wanted to try electronics but I assumed it would be too expensive/complicated but this project showed me that science can be accessible and affordable. Erika A
It was really cool to get a set of results that would change so much with the environment. For example, every time a car would pass, there would be a couple seconds’ delay and then a huge spike in CO2. Leon R
It was a short but interesting project which has stretched my management and communication skills. I also learnt lots about the different ways of measuring air pollution and different sources of it. Ruby H
The Erasmus program offered new insights to data science, while also being fun and entertaining to take part in. Denisa A (pictured below, right)


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