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3D Printed Weather Stations for Research and Education
An NSF-funded project in collaboration with the American Indian Higher Education Consortium (AIHEC), the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR), and the NDSU Library Digital Fabrication Lab.
This project is based on the 3D-PAWS (3D-Printed Automatic Weather Station) project created and maintained by the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR). The NDSU Center for Computationally Assisted Science and Technology (CCAST) is building several 3D-PAWS-based weather stations as part of a National Science Foundation grant (award no. 2018975) titled "Piloting a CI-Enabled Tribal College and University Research Collaboration." The goal of the project is to deploy several low-cost weather stations at Tribal Colleges and Universities (TCUs) in North Dakota, to be used for research and educational projects of relevance to the tribal communities.
Weather stations being built for this project have several notable features:
- Low cost, about $500 per station.
- Open-source design and plans.
- Wireless – solar powered and connected to the cloud via LTE.
- 3D-printed parts for ease of manufacture and replacement.
Expertise and equipment for 3D-printing for this project was provided by the NDSU Library Digital Fabrication Lab. Stations were created and assembled by CCAST interns in NDSU's Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) and Mechanical Engineering (ME) programs. Future goals for the project include:
- Presentation of a bootcamp on IoT concepts, illustrated with 3D-printed weather stations.
- Distribution of station plans and assembly manuals to those interested in doing research and education with weather stations.
- Providing future internship opportunities for students in computer science and engineering.