The Antwerp Maritime Academy has organized in close collaboration with the Universidad Central “Marta Abreu” de Las Villas (Santa Clara, Cuba) a 10-day workshop about the development and calibration of Arduino air quality monitoring systems. The workshop took place at April 15-26, 2019. A Belgian delegation of 3 co-workers and 6 students of the Antwerp Maritime academy went to Cuba to follow that workshop. The workshop fits in the ongoing AIR@PORT project where both institutes are working together to analyse the air quality in the port city Cienfuegos using cheap monitoring systems.
During the first week, the Cuban team of automation engineers taught the students how to build an Arduino monitoring system that can monitor temperature, relative humidity, ozone, CO and particulate matter. That week was ended by placing monitoring systems at 5 different locations around the street that connected the university with the city Santa Clara.
During the second week, the sensors of the measuring devices were calibrated using cheap calibration methods. For temperature, the system was placed inside a plastic bag and immersed in ice water so that the cooling of the water could be followed by our monitoring systems and a conventional glass thermometer. The point where ice and water should have a definition of 0°C was somehow never reached, maybe because the ice was melting too fast. Also, for relative humidity and particulate matter, cheap calibration methods were developed. These experiments were successful because there was a good cooperation between the Engineering and Chemistry faculty at the host university.
During the last days of the workshop, all the collected data had to be processed. Noise was supressed using moving averages, the low-frequency signal in the data was separated from the high frequency signal and graphs were made in Excel. The workshop ended by giving presentations to each other.