Sensing Kites


Parametric Design Seminar


University of Southern California / USC Sidney Harman Academy for Polymathic Study


Biayna Bogosian, Narek Gharakhanian


Internet of Things Workshop, Ubiquitous Sensing Devices, Remote Dynamic Sensing, Parametric Design, Digital Fabrication, Tetrahedral Kites


Fall 2017

Description: This workshop is a citizen engagement initiative to document and monitor air pollution data on the USC campus. Our data acquisition method consists of custom tetrahedral kites with air quality sensing kits. The custom tetrahedral kites are made of silk fabric, aluminum rods and 3D printed hardware. These kites are very stable, easy to fly, and operate well in low to heavy winds. Our custom tetrahedral kite is designed to endure the payload of the air pollution sensing kit which is able to document geotagged temperature, humidity and CO2 data. Our sensing kit will also publish the air quality data to a host computer in real time, where we can utilize 3D visualization techniques to better understand the spatial patterns of the air quality data.
Through lectures and hand-on exercises, the workshop participants will be introduced to the theoretical and historical overview of dynamic sensing, air quality data visualization, as well as modular tetrahedral kite construction. We will then participate in a field monitoring exercise where we will test our air pollution sensing workflow with custom kites. We will conduct our field measurements in various location on campus, to not only compare air pollution results, but also trigger curiosity and provoke thoughts in the campus.

Seminar Objectives:
  • Introduce students to dynamic mobile sensing using custom developed flying devices
  • Teach how to locally collect environmental data such as CO2 level using a Rasberry Pi Platform
  • Show different ways of visualizing the collected data