Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Geoinformatics specialists receive almost one million euros for “SenseBox“ citizen science project

07.03.2016

The "SenseBox" is an assembly kit for stationary and mobile sensors, developed by Geoinformatics specialists at Münster. It is being used by non-specialists in a lot of places to measure environmental data – and the number of measuring stations is soon set to rise substantially. The German Ministry of Education and Science (BMBF) is now providing 960,000 euros of funding for the project for three years.

More than 100 of the small green boxes are already in use: whether in Hamburg, or Zwolle in the Netherlands, or even on the Zugspitze in northern Tyrol – the "SenseBox" has long since left its hometown of Münster behind it.


The green SenseBox contains components with which anyone can construct a measuring station.

Photo: WWU/ifgi

The toolkit for stationary and mobile sensors, developed by Geoinformatics specialists at Münster, is being used by non-specialists in a lot of places to measure environmental data,– and the number of measuring stations is set to rise substantially. The German Ministry of Education and Science (BMBF) is now providing 960,000 euros of funding for the project for three years. The project coordinator is Prof. Angela Schwering from the Institute for Geoinformatics at the University of Münster.

It’s not only private households that are using the boxes, but also – and in particular – school laboratories and museums. "What’s really important to us," says Thomas Bartoschek, who is heading the project jointly with Angela Schwering, "is that people should become involved in science through so-called citizen science projects – in other words, do measuring themselves and ask questions of their own. And the 'SenseBox' – which is also available in a version for school classes – is just the thing for that."

With minimal effort, anyone can construct their own measuring station from the assembly kit. Anyone who likes tinkering around with such things can add on their own sensors and develop new data processing software. Data from all measuring stations is available to the general public on the internet, where the locations are also shown on a map.

What the "SenseBoxes" measure is, among other things, environmental data on light, climate, traffic density and noise pollution. In the BMBF-funded project the researchers now want to develop further sensors – to measure the degree of cloud cover and to check water and air quality.

"The 'SenseBox' has the potential to gather climate data comprehensively over an entire area. This is something that professional weather stations cannot do as there are not enough of them. But something that would be very interesting, especially as far as measuring air quality is concerned, is to get data from as many different places as possible," says Angela Schwering. One feature is common to all the new sensors being planned: they will all measure using a technology based on light – photonics.

The researchers see room for improvement in the "SenseBox". Some of the boxes, for example, provide unusable data because they were set up in places unsuitable for measuring activities.

"We’ll have to take this into account and properly assess the quality of the data so that we can use them scientifically," says Thomas Bartoschek. For this reason, the Geoinformatics specialists compare the data measured in long-term tests with the data provided by professional weather stations. In the next three years they also want to develop statistical methods to optimize data evaluation.

Although receiving BMBF funding for the project – "SenseBox - Photonics and OpenSenseMap: Citizen Science for Photonic Sensor Data", to give it its full name – is the biggest success Münster’s Geoinformatics researchers have had so far, it is not their only one. One of the other successes they have had was in December 2015, when the "SenseBox" was voted the winning project in the "Citizens create the City of the Future" competition. Just a few days ago it was also announced that the project is one of the winners of the "CodeWeekAward" 2016.

Weitere Informationen:

http://www.sensebox.de/en/ SenseBox
http://www.uni-muenster.de/Geoinformatics/sil/index.html Spatial Intelligence Lab - Institute for Geoinformatics

Dr. Christina Heimken | idw - Informationsdienst Wissenschaft

More articles from Awards Funding:

nachricht Yuan Chang and Patrick Moore win prize for the discovery of two cancer viruses
14.03.2017 | Goethe-Universität Frankfurt am Main

nachricht BMBF funding for diabetes research on pancreas chip
08.02.2017 | Helmholtz Zentrum München - Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Gesundheit und Umwelt

All articles from Awards Funding >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Giant Magnetic Fields in the Universe

Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.

The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.

Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...

Im Focus: Tracing down linear ubiquitination

Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.

Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...

Im Focus: Perovskite edges can be tuned for optoelectronic performance

Layered 2D material improves efficiency for solar cells and LEDs

In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...

Im Focus: Polymer-coated silicon nanosheets as alternative to graphene: A perfect team for nanoelectronics

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...

Im Focus: Researchers Imitate Molecular Crowding in Cells

Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to simulate these confined natural conditions in artificial vesicles for the first time. As reported in the academic journal Small, the results are offering better insight into the development of nanoreactors and artificial organelles.

Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

International Land Use Symposium ILUS 2017: Call for Abstracts and Registration open

20.03.2017 | Event News

CONNECT 2017: International congress on connective tissue

14.03.2017 | Event News

ICTM Conference: Turbine Construction between Big Data and Additive Manufacturing

07.03.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Argon is not the 'dope' for metallic hydrogen

24.03.2017 | Materials Sciences

Astronomers find unexpected, dust-obscured star formation in distant galaxy

24.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Gravitational wave kicks monster black hole out of galactic core

24.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>