Research shows having plants in a home not only improves the aesthetics of a home, but also provide health benefits including toxin removal from the air, mood improvement, and an increase in memory retention and focus. No wonder why homeowners have plants throughout their home to take advantage of these benefits. In today’s busy world, it is easy to forget to nutrify, water, and monitor the condition of the plants to maximize their lifetime. To address this, homeowners need an easy and cost-effective solution that monitors the health of their plants, so they provide the appropriate care.
NXPs Rapid IoT prototyping kit can be used to develop a smart botanical garden. The kit integrates eleven NXP devices in a small form-factor hardware design and combines it with proven software enablement and a web IDE with GUI based programming. Refer to Figure 1 for the complete block diagram. You can get one by clicking here.
Rapid IoT provides the easiest path for anyone to take an idea to a proof-of-concept by simplifying the design process. It eliminates the need to write code and integrates all the necessary functions required by an IoT device including the ability to sense, think, and act.
Design Considerations and Implementation
Figure 2 shows the botanical garden conceptual design. Through a smart phone app, you can monitor and control the temperature, humidity, and ambient light via BLE communication. For data storage and enhanced communication capability, the smart phone device and/or botanical garden control unit should be able to transmit/receive data from the cloud via Wi-Fi or 4G connectivity.
A humidifier and external pump are added to water the plants and add humidity as necessary.
To design this botanical garden using the Rapid IoT kit, the following criteria is considered:
- The control unit should have a UI to locally monitor the temperature, humidity, and ambient light.
- The smart device should have a UI to wirelessly manage and control the control unit via BLE or Wi-Fi.
- Data processed and acquired can be uploaded securely to the cloud for future analysis.
Hardware and Software needed:
- Rapid IoT kit
- Docking station
- Smart phone
- Rapid IoT online IDE
The Rapid IoT design combines the rapid IoT kit with a docking station expansion board to control a GPIO pin that switches the humidifier and/or pump on or off per commands sent via BLE from a smart phone. The temperature, humidity, and ambient light sensors are set to read data every second, but this interval can be changed according to the application requirements. The control unit and smartphone UI were designed using the Rapid IoT Studio IDE tool without writing a single line of code.
Figure 3 and 4 show the Rapid IoT IDE studio design and the complete setup. Figure 5 and 6 show the Rapid IoT smart phone UI design and the application, which is used to wirelessly monitor and control the environment around the plants.
All the necessary files to build and test this design can be found here.
If you have a question or concern, you can post it in our Rapid IoT community page by clicking here.
See what else the Rapid IoT Prototyping Kit enables by reading these two articles: