Young people provide amazing tech solutions for healthy oceans
Celebrate World Oceans Day on 8 June with your class by sharing some tech solutions created by other young people, which could help to keep our oceans healthy
All of the following solutions were entries to do your :bit, our annual global challenge that brings together the UN’s Global Goals and the micro:bit.
World Oceans Day is an international day held every year on 8 June. It was designated by the UN as a way to celebrate the world’s shared ocean and our personal connection to the sea, as well as to raise awareness of the ways people can protect it.
Automatic bottle-sorting machine
Marius from Lithuania made an automatic bottle-sorting machine that separates bottles into two bins, depending on if they’re made from metal or plastic. He aimed to play a part in preventing the pollution of the oceans by inventing a fun and easy way to recycle bottles.
The device works by placing the bottle in a circuit and testing for conductivity. As well as learning about the property of materials, Marius found out about working with infra-red sensors, servo-motors and an LCD screen. His invention also counts the number of bottles collected so Marius gained experience of programming using variables.
Marius was a runner up for Europe in the 15 to 18-year-old category of do your :bit.
He said, “Taking part in do your :bit has inspired me to pursue further knowledge, skills and perhaps a career in the IT or engineering fields… I am looking forward to working with artificial intelligence on my future projects.”
Smart oil container
Wan Ahmad from Malaysia made a paper prototype of a cooking oil container that weighs the stored oil. He wished to prevent the pollution of the oceans that occurs when people pour cooking oil down the sink and felt his idea could encourage his community to recycle.
The invention would use pressure and water-level sensors that collect information to be displayed on a micro:bit. A first-time micro:bit user, Wan Ahmad learnt about computer systems using inputs and outputs when designing his device. He explained his prototype in a well-designed poster that included a sketch of the container.
Wan Ahmad was a runner up for Asia and Pacific in the 8 to 14-year-old paper prototype category of do your :bit.
Device to prevent overfishing
Julia from the USA made a device to record the amount and type of fish caught by fishermen. The information is collected on a micro:bit on the boat and can be relayed to another micro:bit in a different location by radio. She aimed to prevent overfishing and, if the boat’s location could be identified in real-time, illegal fishing.
In making her device, Julia learnt how to use the micro:bit’s buttons and radio feature as well as how to program using variables, selection and arrays. She explained how her device worked and how it would help the community in detail, and supplied a working code file with her entry.
Julia was a runner up for North America in the 15 to 18-year-old category of do your :bit. She said, “Technology in the future is going to change the world and it’s up to me and people like me to make sure it changes for the better.”
Arieh and Samuel in Costa Rica designed and built a solar-powered boat to reduce the impact of fossil fuels on the coastline of their country, Costa Rica.
The boys learned about climate change, how to use a 3D printer, and how to program the micro:bit’s buttons while making their device. They made two prototypes and tested them out in a swimming pool before choosing the most hydrodynamically-efficient design.
They said, “We chose to tackle this problem in our community because we think future generations should have a beautiful planet and with climate change that may not happen.”
Arieh and Samuel were winners of the 8 to 14-year-old category of do your :bit for Latin America.
do your :bit
The do your :bit challenge adds social purpose to digital learning and allows students to apply their digital skills to real-world solutions. Find out more about the competition, last year’s winners, and how to take part.