NUWA: NUclear technologies for WAter management
Looking for: Partner(s) - Coordinator
We are looking for principal investigators or partner groups where we can join as technology providers. The University of Padova, though, is a big institution hosting many research groups with a variety of expertises that can become partners. Moreover the university administration can support us in the coordination effort of a project, in the case of becoming coordinator.
Austria - Belgium - Bulgaria - Croatia - Republic of Cyprus - Czech Republic - Denmark - Estonia - Finland - France - Germany - Greece - Hungary - Ireland - Italy - Latvia - Lithuania - Luxembourg - Malta - Netherlands - Poland - Portugal - Romania - Slovakia - Slovenia - Spain - Sweden - UK - Iceland - Liechtenstein - Norway
We propose a technology to measure the moisture content of soil, that is of great importance for precision irrigation and crop monitoring. Our solution is able to monitor large areas (of the order of a hundred of hectares) with a single self sufficient probe. We can give a quantitative measure of the moisture content up to a depth of 50 cm. The technology employs passive nuclear detectors to monitor the natural background radiation produced by cosmic rays. The probe has been assessed in laboratory conditions.
Our aim is to integrate several technologies to address the problem from a variety of aspects, e.g. soil moisture measurements, weather forecasting, water consumption monitoring and economical analysis. We want to propose a comprehensive solution for water resources monitoring, in order to increase the efficiency of water management. We want to develop a cost-effective solution for our end-users, e.g. farmers associations, local water management organization, and public administration.
Our technology has been tested in a laboratory environment. Field tests allow to asses the climatic stability of the system, the mechanical design and the communications. Systematic and random effects in the measurements may arise, due to the environmental conditions. Other challenges may be encountered during the integration phase with other technologies, such as different communication protocols. The produced technology should be ready to be deployed in a real setting, therefore we will exploit our experience with the production of industrial-level prototypes. End-users should be the key of the project, as their feedback will give the guidelines for the developers. When heterogenous groups work together a main issue is the effectiveness of communication among peers. We will study and prepare a common framework together with detailed protocols to converge the end-user needs and the technological requirements. From the technological point of view, when different technologies are integrated it is of utmost importance to define and implement a coherent and common structure. Each technology provides data with peculiar meanings, that need to be evaluated in order to combine them with the rest.
Previous EU experience:
Our group developed its expertise working in projects dedicated to the civil security: DIAMINE (FP5), EURITRACK (FP5), ERITR@C (FP6), MODES_SNM, TAWARA_RTM (FP7) and C-BORD (H2020). We were coordinators of the MODES_SNM and TAWARA_RTM projects. TAWARA developed a detector of radioactive contaminants in tap water. We are Work Package leader for the C-BORD project, that is developing a comprehensive framework of different technologies for the Non-Intrusive Inspection of commercial cargoes.