3-D Printed Radiation Shields for Environmental Sensors Test Setup
FA info icon.svgAngle down icon.svgSource data
Type Paper
Cite as Citation reference for the source document. J.S. Botero-Valencia, M. Mejia-Herrera, Joshua M. Pearce, Design and Implementation of 3-D Printed Radiation Shields for Environmental Sensors, HardwareX, 2022, e00267, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ohx.2022.e00267. OA, Academia OA
FA info icon.svgAngle down icon.svgProject data
Authors Joshua M. Pearce
Location London, Ontario, Canada
Status Designed
Completed 2022
Made Yes
Replicated No
Uses 3D Printing
Instance of 3D Printing
OKH Manifest Download

The measurement of outdoor environmental and climatic variables is needed for many applications such as precision agriculture, environmental pollution monitoring, and the study of ecosystems. Some sensors deployed for these purposes such as temperature, relative humidity, atmospheric pressure, and carbon dioxide sensors require protection from climate factors to avoid bias. Radiation shields hold and protect sensors to avoid this bias, but commercial systems are limited, often expensive, and difficult to implement in low-cost contexts or large deployments for collaborative sensing. To overcome these challenges, this work presents an open source, easily adapted and customized design of a radiation shield. The device can be fabricated with inexpensive off-the-shelf parts and 3-D printed components and can be adapted to protect and isolate different types of sensors. Two material approaches are tested here: polylactic acid (PLA), the most common 3-D printing filament, and acrylonitrile styrene acrylate (ASA), which is known to offer better resistance against UV radiation, greater hardness, and generally higher resistance to degradation. To validate the designs, the two prototypes were installed on a custom outdoor meteorological system and temperature and humidity measurements were made in several locations for one month and compared against a proprietary system and a system with no shield. The 3-D printed materials were also both tested multiple times for one month for UV stability of their mechanical properties, their optical transmission and deformation under outdoor high-heat conditions. The results showed that ASA is the preferred material for this design and that the open source radiation shield could match the performance of proprietary systems. The open source system can be constructed for about nine US dollars, which enables mass development of flexible weather stations for monitoring needed in smart agriculture.

Keywords[edit | edit source]

Climatic variables; environmental variables; Internet of Things (IoT); low cost; radiation shield; 3-D printing; open hardware; environmental monitoring; sensing; environmental sensing; additive manufacturing; smart agriculture

See also[edit | edit source]

Services provided by agrivoltaics are: renewable electricity generation, decreased green-house gas emissions, reduced climate change, increased crop yield, plant protection from excess solar energy, plant protection from inclement weather such as hail, water conservation, agricultural employment, local food, improved health from pollution reduction increased revenue for farmers, a hedge against inflation, the potential to produce nitrogen fertilizer on farm, on farm production of renewable fuels such as anhydrous ammonia or hydrogen, and electricity for EV charging for on- or off-farm use.

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