Using CO2 Sensors in Research Projects

Present-day students have to be ready for tomorrow’s technical jobs. To assist them in achieving this goal, Walt Whitman High School in Huntington Station, New York, hired Fred Feraco, Science Research Program Teacher, to fulfill that task.

Research Projects at School

Mr Feraco is the only Research Teacher at Whitman. His Science Research program draws in mentors from the local scientific community such as the Brookhaven National Labs, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, and Cornell University to work with students on various projects including robotics, chemistry, biology, and more. Mr Feraco then helps the students with their projects throughout the school year.

Measuring Carbon Dioxide Levels with CO2Meter

For students keen to study climate and air quality, Mr Feraco sought CO2Meter to help with a project which involved the measurement of carbon dioxide levels indoors as well as around the community. However, rather than just reading and graphing CO2 levels, the students planned to integrate CO2 sensors with Arduino microcontrollers so as to add hands-on benchtop electronics and computer programming into the project.

CO2Meter

Application

Beginning in the fall, one of the students effectively managed to wire the K30 sensors to Arduino Uno microcontrollers and a battery power supply in order to render them portable. The subsequent step will be to gather experimental data from multiple locations. The systems they are testing include:

  • Arduino with NodeRed and IoT
  • Arduino IDE through a Mac using serial I/O
  • Arduino saving data to an SD card via a break-out board
  • Raspberry Pi with Python saving to Dropbox
  • Raspberry Pi microcomputer using Linux

CO2Meter

“As I am relatively new to Arduino in general, I have been using the examples from the CO2Meter site to help me get started,” a student named Aaron stated. He said that their code examples online have been “a very great help so far.”

Will the project be fruitful? With a number of winning science fair projects coming from his students, the odds are in Mr Feraco’s favor. What is certain is that the staff at CO2Meter are excited to be a part of helping the next generation of students get motivated about climate, science, air quality, and STEM education.

This information has been sourced, reviewed and adapted from materials provided by CO2Meter.

For more information on this source, please visit CO2Meter.

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