AME410 Air Quality Display Monitor

Project by Anthony Franqui, Chris Kennedy, and Jackson Sipes

The concept for our project was based on the fact that air quality is an important issue that is affecting environmental and public health alike. We wanted to create a system that could easily visualize how the air quality has been affecting a local community, and also improve the air quality in that area.

We designed and conceptualized an Air Quality Display Monitor that is portable and allows you to visualize the quality of air in an community area through a large LCD screen and comparing two lichen samples pre and post-filtration. Our prototype reflects the type of features that the final product would have, but does not represent the final physical structure that will be seen in our conceptual project.

For our prototype, we used a solid wood frame encasing spray painted white with faux moss as representation of Lichen. Air Quality data from a Sparkfun Air Quality Sensor was displayed on an Arduino LCD Screen while connected to an Arduino UNO.


All other information about our project concept and future implementations can be found here on our Powerpoint: AQDM

Contributions were as follows:

Anthony Franqui: Fabrication and CAD conceptual design

Chris Kennedy: Arduino Code Setup and Materials

Jackson Sipes: Documentation, Presentation Materials and Conceptual Design


Final Project- The DIY Seed Kit

Project by Inez, Cody, Ziyi, and Erin

Our concept stems from the terrible growing conditions of the desert. Only very few plants can grow out here (namely, corn and citrus) due to the dry and hot environment.

What if there was a kit that you could buy that could allow you to grow many different plants, regardless of conditions? What if this kit was also biodegradable and inherently organic?


This is our result. The package itself is made completely out of cardboard, with paper sticker labels under each item to help identify them.

In the top left corner is Scoby. It is in a glass jar, and contains more than enough for several plants. The fermented tea is the main component in the kit; it helps balance the pH of the soil, retains moisture (which is very important in the desert), and also acts as a natural pesticide by keeping away harmful bacteria from the seeds. We placed more scabby than necessary in the kit to allow for someone to start their own culture if desired.

In the bottom left corner is a collection of tea bags. There are about 10 included. They act as the container for the seed and it’s components, and are completely biodegradable.

The center houses the instructions, both in written and youtube format via a url. The center section itself just serves as a work area and a depiction of our logo.

The top right corner holds a bag of soil. This soil is intended to be placed in the tea bag, but there should be enough to fill a small gardening pot if desired.

The bottom right corner contains a bag of approximately 10 seeds. These particular seeds are broccoli and were picked for their high tolerance of acidity. Kits in theory could sell with various other seeds as starters, but with everything else virtually the same, are not a big factor in choice.

As stated earlier, our instructions also exist in video form.


For our display, we also planted a bag using this method, and hooked it up with soil moisture and pH level sensors via Arduino. The readout is on an LCD screen.


The contributions include-

Cody: Arduino code and setup

Inez: Instruction sheet, scoby supply, and kit construction

Ziyi: Video editing and photography, tea bag supply, and kit construction

Erin: Documentation, seed and soil bag supply, and display box construction

Project Status Update – Air Filter


Our Biodesign project will be a filter that is placed on top of roofs and placed in air conditioning systems. The filter will be made from a compound of coffee grounds and potassium hydroxide that has been heated and then formed into a usable shape. The compound it able to absorb both methane and CO2 exceptionally well. Once the compound has been exhausted and absorbed the material can be used as a fuel source that burns much more cleanly than typical fossil fuels.


We have currently are awaiting some of our materials for the project but our two main components are coffee grounds and potassium hydroxide.


Coffee grounds

Coffee Grounds



Potassium hydroxide

Potassium Hydroxide


We currently have no code but we plan to have the code output information from a methane sensor for the user.  It will allow the user to know how much methane is in the air and when the filter has filled.


  1. (This week) For our project, we wish to make the compound in real life

2. (Nest week) Then place the compound into an existing air filter and have it absorb the gas

3.  (Last week) Once the filter is working we will make sensor to go along with it so that is it much easier for the public to use it

Group Member contributes:

Antonio: Help with research, programming, and designing.
Colin: Help with design, implementation, and programming.
Timothy: Help with construction, effects on world, and design.
Arturo: Help with the gathering of materials, coding, and building.


Bio-luminescence Update

This prototype shown below illustrates the bio-luminescent system will illuminate when the algae are agitated. The prototype consists of UV sensitive liquid and a servo motor acts a generalized form of actuation to disturb the system.

The prototype suggests that regardless of final concept, there is some consideration that need to be accounted for when completing the system. For example. a form of actuation that can be performed to a non-moisture form of algae. Other considerations would be to maximize sensing/actuation that reacts to a users input. Creating the notion of object-user receptive interactions.


Depending upon whether or not an algae culture in possession is able to regain its luminescent qualities, will determine time tables for testing an integrated system for dry actuation. But regardless there will be an iteration that requires a moisture dependent system.



4/12 – Present prototype, discuss design for final iteration
4/17 – Divide algae culture, test dry system, design fabrication for project
4/19 – Create code and electronics for the interactive system
4/24 – Putting system together with new culture in place
4/26 – Final touch-ups on project
4/28 – Showcase

Project Update

Our project in its current form is about air quality sensing. We want to cheaply and accurately be able to know whats in the air around you.


This currently is what we have set up wise. We wanted to make sure that the sensor that we have worked before building something for it. We plan to make some 3D printed structure to house everything for easy transport. Sadly our sensor that we were using isn’t what we are looking for. It has the capicity to detect more than one gas, but not tell the difference between them. The output range can tell us what gas is present, but many of the ranges overlap.

#include <SoftwareSerial.h>

SoftwareSerial lcd = SoftwareSerial(2,4);

void setup() {



void loop() {
int reading = analogRead(A0);






4/12 – present

4/17 – start printing the model and get additional sensors

4/19 – add additional code for sensors

4/24 – refinement

Roles :

Anthony – 3D modeling and coding

Chris – sensor research and coding

Jackson – project and conceptual development