Junior Academy - Kahush Mutahi

To amplify the impact of the effect of technology on the society, gearbox has started the Junior academy training to train young aspiring engineers and innovators at an early age.Different schools and backgrounds, student are encouraged to join in and start on long term and short term introductory courses on electronics, web development and other innovation technologies.

Kahush Mutahi a year 12 business student from Bosworth Academy piloted the academy for two weeks. He learnt about embedded systems and IoT and without a electrical or engineering background, he was able to develop a basic knowledge of how embedded systems works. He even went ahead and developed a system that is able to sense motion and manage lighting in rooms depending on the motion detected.

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His automated Lighting and Motion Sensor System works by managing how much energy is used in the lighting of spaces around the house by regulating the lighting systems whether there are people in the house or not. The system turns on the light in a room when someone gets into the room and switches it off immediately they leave, this is an IoT project that saves energy by eliminating the chances where people forget to switch bulbs in rooms and thus wasting energy.

Kahush was taken through a basic introductory crash course on how to identify components of an arduino kit, basic connections and taken through a collection of tutorials and links through which he has been able to read through, the simplicity with which the training was offered was all he required and the week after, he was able to create a entry level project.

The student has intended to make his project portable enough to carry around mount it on places it would be required without much labour or technical expertise. To do this, he will be need to be able to learn more so that he can configure more components to work with his basic system. This way he learns the challenges experienced by innovators in a bid to make things portable and create ease of movement of products.

In the few days, he would work on the designing hardware and other components that will enable his projects to work in various locations and under different capabilities. To perform tasks like these he would learn other industrial design and fabrication software, with which he be able to design and create other products that may or may not be associated with his system.

Further, he took a quick on Autodesk Fusion 350 to create a model for the prototype of his system. He created a model of a room in a residential room, in this room he installed his automated motion sensor lighting system.

After 3D Printing and assembly of the system components. The testing and corrections made, the system performed as expected, hand movements and nods would cause the light to come on and off when there was stillness in the model room.

The system would detect motion in and out of the room and a light would come on or off. The system is highly sensitive and thus even the slightest movement.

 

Although the system has its shortcomings like heavily dependent on motion to function,  that would make sure that it performs unregulated tasks especially when other in the room like curtains move and requirement of heavy maintainence, he chose to see all the good.

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“This would be helpful when someone is a room motionless and has an activity they are engaged in, they could move a limb and the system would respond appropriately instantly. This system would be helpful to people who are physically challenged, the aged and children who are still young and would be needed to use certain rooms. The system eliminated the need to switch on or off the lights.” He explained

New and emerging technologies have always been associated with the younger generations. Older people tend to be set in their ways, leaving tech-savvy millennials in the forefront of discovering and embracing new devices as they arrive on the scene. Younger people learn more quickly and that goes for technology in the same way it goes for everything else.