- Chattahoochee Riverkeeper’s team members currently manually monitor a river that provides drinking water for 4 million people
- Ericsson aims to inspire university students to develop innovative devices that can be used to remotely monitor the river, which drains an area of 8,770 square miles
- Ericsson will prototype the leading designs and ultimately provide Chattahoochee Riverkeeper with devices that help them automate their work
Ericsson (NASDAQ:ERIC, news, filings) has partnered with Chattahoochee Riverkeeper to launch a competition in which university students are challenged to develop innovative devices that can be used to remotely monitor the Chattahoochee River. This river on the borders of the US states of Alabama, Georgia and Florida provides drinking water for more than four million people in northern Georgia.
Measuring water cleanliness on an ongoing basis is expensive, time-consuming and inefficient. Around the world, non-profit organizations have taken up this challenge for the benefit of the environment and the health of local communities. In Atlanta, Georgia, the Chattahoochee Riverkeeper fulfills this role – taking water samples on a weekly basis and conducting monthly river and lake patrols.
As a leader in the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) sector, Ericsson seeks to use technology as a force for good, in this case to ease the burden on Chattahoochee Riverkeeper’s staff and volunteers, who monitor a river that drains an area of 8,770 square miles. The MindSumo challenge was created to this end.
Elaine Weidman-Grunewald, Vice President, Sustainability and Corporate Responsibility at Ericsson, says: “We use technology for good to create positive impacts in communities across the 180 countries where we do business. If we can inspire students to develop devices that can automate the water monitoring Chattahoochee Riverkeeper performs on a regular basis, we’ll consider that a great success. Ultimately, we’ll be able to provide Chattahoochee Riverkeeper with a device that they can use to monitor water quality.”
Challenged to propose creative means of using sensor technology to continuously and remotely measure water quality in a specific location, students will submit proposals and designs for the challenge. Ericsson will then prototype the leading designs and ultimately provide a device to Chattahoochee Riverkeeper, which depends on scientific data to support their mission of protecting a river that flows to the Gulf of Mexico.
Jason Ulseth, Chattahoochee Riverkeeper, says “We are dedicated to protecting and preserving the Chattahoochee River, its lakes and tributaries for the people, fish and wildlife that depend upon them. Strong data is vital to accomplishing our mission and we’re excited to see what a technology leader like Ericsson can inspire students to create.”
Proposals must detail devices that cost no more than $200 and can be used to gather and report relevant water-quality data on a perpetual basis. The device must be waterproof, RoHS compliant, environmentally safe and low-power. Additionally, it should be easily deployable by a single person, capable of being anchored in the river and durable. Entrants must provide a diagram showing how the device is assembled, as well as a description of the device and its intended usefulness.
For more information, see the MindSumo challenge page.
NOTES TO EDITORS
About Chattahoochee Riverkeeper.
CRK’s mission is to protect and preserve the Chattahoochee River, its lakes and tributaries for the people, fish and wildlife that depend upon it. For more information, visit www.chattahoochee.org.
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