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RS launches cloud-based open source collaborative prototyping platform

Business news |
By Nick Flaherty


RS Components (RS) has launched a cloud-enabled open-source prototyping platform based on open source hardware and code developed with its DesignSpark partners

The first use of the platform is for the DesignSpark #ActivistEngineering programme, aimed at projects focussed on sustainability. The first pilot project is the ‘Air Quality’ project to design, build and deploy a global network of portable indoor air quality monitors for the home, workplace, or other public indoor spaces and share the data collected back to the community.

The DesignSpark Environmental Sensor Development Platform is based on a Raspberry Pi single-board computer with wireless connectivity to connect to the cloud. The kit comprises a set of Air Quality sensor modules that plug into a Raspberry Pi-compatible board with touchscreen. The platform and 3D printed enclosures are optimised for the Raspberry Pi model 3B+, though any model can be used. It is also compatible with peripheral modules (PMOD), allowing connection to an extensive range of PMOD add-on boards.

The Air Quality project will roll out over three phases for six months from November 2021, with a small group of first phase participants selected to Alpha test the sensor development platform. These users will create and share inspirational projects to the DesignSpark community, paving the way for phase two of the project which will be extended to all DesignSpark members with an opportunity to win one of 50 sensor kits. Commercial availability will follow in the final phase.

“Sustainability is critical to the future of our planet, which is why we are calling on engineers across the globe to use their skills and take action,” said Mike Bray, Group Lead – Innovation and DesignSpark at Electrocomponents. “Through programmes like this, we hope engineers will join together in force to create sustainable designs that will make a positive difference to people and communities.”

www.rs-online.com/designspark/activist-engineering-engineering-a-better-world

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