after exploring my ideas in 2D, i proceeded to try and crystalize my domains into a project i could accomplish this semester.
the result was the hydrocart, a design for a movable research platform to study hydroponic systems. the hydrocart can accomodate a large nutrient tub and a return/waste tub as well as several hydroponic planters made out of PVC pipe. the cart is based on the nutrient film technique, and includes a small workspace as well as spaces to add additional machine control units, important to my planned work with machine learning for hydroponic systems. it is manufactured out of CNC cut plywood, PVC, and common hardware, all of which i have experience fabricating with.
in-class critique was quite helpful; the main feedback was that i should somewhat reconsider my goals with this project. instead of simply creating a hydroponic research platform, i will design and attempt to work within a set of constraints which simulate the challenges posed by building a hydroponic system in an environment like the International Space Station.
i believe this change of scope and ambition will wind up being fairly instrumental to a successful and productive research project for this semester. it will be extremely challenging, yet possibly very important work.