Title of Proposal

Hydro-Aeroponic Design

Major

Mechanical Engineering

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science

Date of Graduation

Spring 2019

Abstract

“Aeroponics” is a plant cultivation technique where roots hang suspended in the air while the nutrient solution is delivered in the form of a fine mist. NASA has done experiments in space and found out that plants grow very well with aeroponic technology. However, “Hydroponics” is the most preferred method, where plants are grown in a non-soil medium, and mostly in nutrient liquid that flows through rectangular channels. There are advantages and disadvantages to each system. With the intention of combining the efficiency of aeroponics and the compactness of hydroponics, a hydro-aeroponic system was created to grow spinach and lettuce. This design utilized a misting box and recirculating fan to drive humid, nutrient-laden mist through a series of channels. Several setbacks resulted in many iterations of misting boxes, fans, and component arrangements which ultimately led to a proof of concept design. The proof of concept design was implemented and tested for several weeks with a variety of plants and showed varying degrees of success. Several design improvements were proposed to enhance the system however, due to the restrictions with time and budget, the decision was made to continue with the current design.

Research Sponsor

Dr. Gopal Nadkarni

First Reader

Dr. Christopher Daniels

Second Reader

Dr. Guo-Xiang Wang

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