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 LandKlif: Changing Ecosystems
06.07.2018 | Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg

nachricht “Future of Composites in Transportation 2018”, JEC Innovation Award for hybrid roof bow
29.06.2018 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Lasertechnik ILT

All articles from Awards Funding >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: First evidence on the source of extragalactic particles

For the first time ever, scientists have determined the cosmic origin of highest-energy neutrinos. A research group led by IceCube scientist Elisa Resconi, spokesperson of the Collaborative Research Center SFB1258 at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), provides an important piece of evidence that the particles detected by the IceCube neutrino telescope at the South Pole originate from a galaxy four billion light-years away from Earth.

To rule out other origins with certainty, the team led by neutrino physicist Elisa Resconi from the Technical University of Munich and multi-wavelength...

Im Focus: Magnetic vortices: Two independent magnetic skyrmion phases discovered in a single material

For the first time a team of researchers have discovered two different phases of magnetic skyrmions in a single material. Physicists of the Technical Universities of Munich and Dresden and the University of Cologne can now better study and understand the properties of these magnetic structures, which are important for both basic research and applications.

Whirlpools are an everyday experience in a bath tub: When the water is drained a circular vortex is formed. Typically, such whirls are rather stable. Similar...

Im Focus: Breaking the bond: To take part or not?

Physicists working with Roland Wester at the University of Innsbruck have investigated if and how chemical reactions can be influenced by targeted vibrational excitation of the reactants. They were able to demonstrate that excitation with a laser beam does not affect the efficiency of a chemical exchange reaction and that the excited molecular group acts only as a spectator in the reaction.

A frequently used reaction in organic chemistry is nucleophilic substitution. It plays, for example, an important role in in the synthesis of new chemical...

Im Focus: New 2D Spectroscopy Methods

Optical spectroscopy allows investigating the energy structure and dynamic properties of complex quantum systems. Researchers from the University of Würzburg present two new approaches of coherent two-dimensional spectroscopy.

"Put an excitation into the system and observe how it evolves." According to physicist Professor Tobias Brixner, this is the credo of optical spectroscopy....

Im Focus: Chemical reactions in the light of ultrashort X-ray pulses from free-electron lasers

Ultra-short, high-intensity X-ray flashes open the door to the foundations of chemical reactions. Free-electron lasers generate these kinds of pulses, but there is a catch: the pulses vary in duration and energy. An international research team has now presented a solution: Using a ring of 16 detectors and a circularly polarized laser beam, they can determine both factors with attosecond accuracy.

Free-electron lasers (FELs) generate extremely short and intense X-ray flashes. Researchers can use these flashes to resolve structures with diameters on the...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Leading experts in Diabetes, Metabolism and Biomedical Engineering discuss Precision Medicine

13.07.2018 | Event News

Conference on Laser Polishing – LaP: Fine Tuning for Surfaces

12.07.2018 | Event News

11th European Wood-based Panel Symposium 2018: Meeting point for the wood-based materials industry

03.07.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Leading experts in Diabetes, Metabolism and Biomedical Engineering discuss Precision Medicine

13.07.2018 | Event News

Research finds new molecular structures in boron-based nanoclusters

13.07.2018 | Materials Sciences

Algae Have Land Genes

13.07.2018 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>