Group Project Proposal (Engineering)

SCHOOL OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY, SINGAPORE

INVESTIGATIVE SKILLS IN SCIENCE

Names:

Class: S2-07_______

Group Reference: B

A.    Indicate the type of research that you are adopting:

 [  X  ] Improve a product or process: Industrial and applied research

           Development of water filtering device

  1. Type & Category

Type of research: _______6________  (Write down one number from 1 to 6)


Category  –  ___________13_____ (Write down one number from 7 to 20)

Sub-category –  ________c_________ (Write down the sub-heading alphabet)  


(Refer to
http://sst2016-iss.blogspot.sg/p/l2-types-of-research-categories.html  )

Application of project relevant to SST Community, Society or the World:

 

        The development of this straw will give people living in rural areas access to clean water.


C.    Write down your research title:

Development of a water filtering device.

D.   (a) Problem being addressed


Backpackers and people living in rural areas do not have (constant) access to clean water. Water is a necessity for the survival of Man and if Man consumed dirty water containing harmful components, he/she may die from the disease they have contracted.

      (b) Goals


We want to build a straw inspired by The Straw from Waterislife.com which would be cheaper but as effective as the orgininal straw.

(c) Specify Requirements

  1. A filter must be used.
  2. Iodine crystals must be used.
  3. Granular activated charcoal must be used.
  4. Nettings or something that have holes smaller than the iodine crystals and granular activated charcoal - to separate the 3 different compartments

(d) 3 possible Solutions

We will propose 3 types of straws (using 3 types of membranes), but we will only be doing one straw due to time and money constraints. Here are the 3 prototypes:

a.

  1. Using silver ion filter
  2. Membrane filter
  3. Screen filter

b.

Figure above shows the 3 different designs of prototypes


(e) Choice and rationale for choice

Suggested factors for consideration:

Factors

Critical Thinking question

Weight

Is the weight suitable?

Size

Is the size suitable?

Cost to produce

Do you have the financial support to produce it?

Elegance

Is the solution simple, clever, or ingenious?

Robustness

Is the solution sturdy, resilient, and unlikely to fail?

Aesthetics

Is the solution tasteful and pleasing to look at?

Resources

Do you have or can you get the materials you need?

Time

Do have time to make the solution and test it?

Skill Required

Do you have the skills to make the solution?

Safety

Is the solution safe to build, use, store, and dispose of?

Ease of use

Is the device easy to use?

Environmental Impact

Does the device in anyway, have a negative impact on the environment?

Table 4: List of factors for consideration in the design of the prototype

Ranking matrix

Colour

Weight

Size

Cost to produce

Elegance

Robustness

Aesthetics

Resources

Time

Skill required

Safety

Ease of use

Environmental Impact

Row Total

Normalised value

Colour

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0.000

Weight

2

1

1

0

0

2

0

0

0

0

0

0

4

0.027

Size

2

1

0

0

0

2

0

0

0

0

0

0

3

0.020

Cost to produce

2

1

2

0

0

2

0

1

0

0

1

0

9

0.060

Elegance

2

2

2

2

0

2

0

1

0

0

1

0

12

0.080

Robustness

2

2

2

2

2

2

2

2

2

1

2

0

19

0.128

Aesthetics

2

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

2

0.013

Resources

2

2

2

2

2

0

2

1

1

0

0

0

14

0.094

Time

2

2

2

1

1

0

2

1

1

0

2

0

14

0.094

Skill Required

2

2

2

2

2

0

2

1

1

0

1

0

15

0.101

Safety

2

2

2

2

2

1

2

2

2

2

2

0

21

0.141

Ease of use

2

2

2

1

1

0

2

2

0

0

0

0

12

0.080

Environmental Impact

2

2

2

2

2

2

2

2

2

2

2

2

24

0.161

Total

149

Table 1: The ranking matrix for factors affecting the choice

Decision making grid

Requirement

Solution 1

Solution 2

Solution 3

Factors

Normalised value

Votes (0 to 5)

Normalised votes

Votes (0 to 5)

Normalised votes

Votes (0 to 5)

Normalised votes

#1: Environmental Impact

0.161

3

0.483

2

0.322

2

0.322

#2: Safety

0.141

3

0.423

2

0.282

2

0.282

#3: Robustness

0.101

3

0.303

1

0.101

1

0.101

Total points

Table 2: The decision making matrix for the 3 most important factors.

<state the choice with rationale using the decision making matrix>

E.    Method – Description in detail of method or procedures (The following are important and key items that should be included when formulating ANY AND ALL research plans.)

(a) Equipment list:
 

Things to get from lab

Things to be bought

Iodine Crystal

Granular Activated Charcoal (GAC)

4 beakers to measure water

Silver Ion Filter

Gloves

1 Long Stick

PH Sensor

1 Long Tube

Turbidity Sensor

Scissors

Colorimeter

10 Agar Plates

Sterile Cotton

Labquest x

(b) Diagrams

                 Fig 2.1                                            Fig 2.2

Fig 2.2 shows how the filter process

Fig 2.2 shows the detailed structure of the straw and how we plan to build the straw

(c) Procedures for building: Detail all procedures for construction of prototype

  1. Wrap the bottom of the tube, using the silver ion filter and secure it with tape.
  2. Push the membrane (silver ion) filter to the bottom of the tube.
  3. Push the cotton, (silver ion) filter and cotton on top of the membrane (silver ion) filter
  4. Pour the iodine crystals into the tube *Do this in a fume, because the iodine crystal is corrosive and evaporates easily in heat*
  5. Repeat step 3
  6. Pour the granular activated charcoal (GAC) into the tube
  7. Cut the the tube 1cm above where the GAC is filled to.
  8. Wrap the top of the tube, using the silver ion filter and secure it with tape.

(d) Procedures for testing: Detail all procedures for testing of prototype

  1. Make a table to record results
  2. Pour 100ml of the 2 different types of water into the straw and let the filtered water drip into a clean beaker.
  3. Test the filtered and nonfiltered water based on…
  1. the PH value (using PH Sensor)
  2. the clarity (using Turbidity Sensor)
  3. nitrate (colorimeter)
  4. Agar Plates (presence of bacteria)
  1. Record the results down into a table.
  2. Repeat steps 1 to 4

(e) Risk, Assessment and Management: Identify any potential risks and safety precautions to be taken.

Risk

Assessment

Management

Iodine Crystals are corrosive - easily evaporate in heat - and would cause eye and/or skin burns if not handled properly.

High

Handle iodine crystals with gloves.

Iodine Crystals are poisonous and cannot be disposed anyhow.

High

Sweep up or vacuum, place in a suitable container for disposal. Wash spill site. Do not allow contamination of drains and waterways.

If not assembled and secured properly, the materials in the straw would fall out.

High

Assemble the materials slightly tightly, living a little allowance between each other, so they do not fly everywhere and tape the silver ion filter (at the bottom and top of the straw) securely.

The Agar plates cannot be handled anyhow.

High

Handle with gloves because our fingers can contaminate the agar plate and our results will not be accurate.

Table 3: Risk Assessment and Management table

(f) Data Analysis: Describe the procedures you will use to analyze the data/results that answer engineering goals

We will test the quality of the filtered water on whether the water quality has improved - the clarity, smell and presence of particles in the water.

  1. Filter our water with our water filtering device
  2. Test the quality filtered, nonfiltered water and tap water using
  1. PH Sensor
  2. Colorimeter
  3. Turbidity Sensor
  4. Agar Plate

The important results (average)  will be tabulated into a table, and listed under data analysis, and the detailed (results of each test) will, also, be tabulated in a table but listed under appendix

  1. Testing for PH value - PH Sensor

Equipments needed:

  1. Calibrate the PH sensor if needed
  2. Put the probe in the waters needed to be tested
  3. Record the results
  4. Rinse the probe with distilled water

      (2) Testing for nitrate - Colorimeter

Equipments needed:

  1. Calibrate the Colorimeter
  1.  Press the < or > button on the Colorimeter to select the correct wavelength for your experiment (430 nm, 470 nm, 565 nm, or 635 nm).
  2. Allow the Colorimeter to warm up for about five minutes before calibrating. Calibrate the Colorimeter.
  3. Open the lid of the colorimeter to reveal cuvette slot.
  4. Insert a cuvette, filled with distilled water or other solvent used to prepare your solutions, for your calibration blank (100% transmittance or 0 absorbance). Important: Line up one of the clear sides of the cuvette with the arrow at the right side of the cuvette slot.
  5. Close the colorimeter lid.
  6. Press the CAL button on the Colorimeter to begin the calibration process. Release the CAL button when the red LED begins to flash.
  7. When the red LED stops flashing, the calibration is complete. The absorbance reading should be very close to 0.000 (100%T).
  8. Remove the blank cuvette from the Colorimeter.
  9. Continue with data collection.
  1. Rinse the cuvettes (which are going to be used) with distilled water
  2. Fill the rinsed cuvettes with the types of water which are going to be tested
  3. Insert the cuvette into the cuvette slot in the colorimeter
  4. Record the results

     

(3) Testing the clarity (of the water) - Turbidity Sensor

Equipments needed:

  1. Calibrate the sensor
  1. If your sample water is very clear, you might want to let the Turbidity Sensor warm up for about five minutes to assure a stable voltage.
  2. Enter the calibration routine for your data-collection program.
  3. First Calibration Point: Obtain the cuvette containing the Turbidity Standard (100 NTU) and gently invert it four times to mix in any particles that may have settled to the bottom. Important: Do not shake the standard. Shaking will introduce tiny air bubbles that will affect turbidity readings.
  4. Wipe the outside of the cuvette with a soft, lint-free cloth or tissue.
  5. Holding the standard by the lid, place it in the Turbidity Sensor. Align the mark on the cuvette with the mark on the Turbidity Sensor. Important: These marks must be aligned whenever a reading is taken.
  6. Close the lid.
  7. Enter 100 as the value in NTU.
  8. Remove the standard.
  9. Second Calibration point: Prepare a blank by rinsing the empty cuvette with distilled water, then filling it to the top of the line with distilled water. Important: The bottom of the meniscus should be at the top of the line for every measurement throughout this test. This volume level is critical to obtain correct turbidity values.
  10. Screw the lid on the cuvette. Wipe the outside with a soft, lint-free cloth or tissue.
  11. Holding the cuvette by the lid, place it into the slot of the Turbidity Sensor. Make sure that the marks are aligned. Close the lid.
  12. Enter 0 as the value in NTU. You are now ready to collect turbidity data.
  1. Rinse the cuvette with distilled water
  2. Fill the cuvette with the water needed to be tested (not a must to fill to brim)
  3. Wipe the outside of the cuvette with a soft, lint-free cloth or tissue.

      (4) Testing for bacteria - Agar Plates

Equipments needed:

  1. Wear gloves
  2. Wipe off the condensation on the agar plate and label it
  3. Use the micropipette and attach the tip by pushing the front of the micropipette into the tip
  4. Set the micropipette to 100 microlitres
  5. Press the plunger of the micropipette
  6. Release the water into the agar jelly
  7. Dispose the plunger in a biohazard bin
  8. Use a spreader to spread the water (gently)
  1. Important: Hold it by the handle
  1. Close the agar plate and seal it with parafilm
  2. Incubate for a day
  3. Take picture of results the next day
  1. Against a black or dark background

F. Bibliography: List at least five (5) major sources (e.g. science journal articles, books, internet sites) from your literature review. If you plan to use vertebrate animals, one of these references must be an animal care reference. Choose the APA format and use it consistently to reference the literature used in the research plan. List your entries in alphabetical order for each type of source.

(a) Books

  1.  Rosa, F. (1985). Water treatment specification manual. New York: McGraw-Hill;. Found using NLB e-books
  2.  Stevenson, D. (1997). Water treatment unit processes. London: Imperial College Press ;. Found using NLB e-books

(b) Journals

  1. Woodhead, S., & Wood, G. E. C.. (1894). An Inquiry Into The Relative Efficiency Of Water Filters In The Prevention Of Infective Disease. The British Medical Journal, 2(1768), 1118–1121. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org.proxy.lib.sg/stable/20230525d

(c) Websites

  1.   Filtration - How does it work? (n.d.). Retrieved January 14, 2016, from http://www.historyofwaterfilters.com/filtration-process.html
  2. Water filters. (n.d.). Retrieved January 14, 2016, from http://www.explainthatstuff.com/howwaterfilterswork.html 
  3.  Water Treatment: How to Choose a Water Filter. (n.d.). Retrieved January 14, 2016, from http://www.rei.com/learn/expert-advice/water-treatment-backcountry.html   


References

  1.  Manuals
  1.  Vernier Colorimeter Manual. (2016, February 8). Retrieved February 25, 2016, from http://www.vernier.com/files/manuals/col-bta/col-bta.pdf
  2.  Vernier pH Sensor Manual. (2016, February 8). Retrieved February 25, 2016, from http://www.vernier.com/files/manuals/ph-bta/ph-bta.pdf 
  3.  Vernier Turbidity Sensor Manual. (2014, May 16). Retrieved February 25, 2016, from http://www.vernier.com/files/manuals/trb-bta.pdf

(e) Websites

  1.  Drinking Water Quality Report. (n.d.). Retrieved March 01, 2016, from http://www.pub.gov.sg/general/watersupply/Pages/DrinkingWQReport.aspx
  2.  Facts and figures. (n.d.). Retrieved March 02, 2016, from http://www.unwater.org/water-cooperation-2013/water-cooperation/facts-and-figures/en/ 
  3. Screen Filter Micron Size

http://www.netafimusa.com/files/literature/wastewater/Mesh-vs-Micron.pdf