Using Sensoro and Semtech technologies, MIT IoT Bootcamp students develop a water monitoring solution to prevent flooding in Turkey where flash floods are dangerously common.

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) IoT Bootcamp, sponsored by Sensoro and Semtech, set up a hackathon with around 40 participants who were divided into small working teams to generate ideas on how to make a positive impact on communities across the world.

The aim of the bootcamp was to expose teams of students to the potential uses of IoT by allowing them to experiment with both the LoRaWAN protocol provided by the LoRa Alliance, and Sensoro’s cutting-edge sensor technologies.

A leading example was the development of a wireless sensor system to monitor water levels in drainage systems. The purpose of the system was to prevent natural floods in Turkey, where flash floods account for millions of dollars in damage, as well as many injuries and deaths.

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Flooding in Turkish city of Artvin – August, 2015. Image from Sensoro’s Blog

The team’s solution was to utilize wireless sensors to help mitigate this problem. The team implemented a LoRaWAN network to power the water level sensors, each connecting to a LoRaWAN-enabled gateway. 

The data gathered on water levels then allows for alerts to be sent via email or SMS. The students also set up a traffic control scheme that green-lighted the evacuation route. This system would allow Turkey’s citizens and government the extra time needed to protect property and save lives.

“With its rapid growth and solid foundation with LoRaWAN, LoRa Technology makes it possible to connect to the Cloud, enabling sound decisions in multiple industries, including smart cities, smart buildings, supply chain and logistics, metering, and agriculture,” said Mike Wong, Vice President for Semtech’s Wireless and Sensing Products Group.

The LoRaWAN protocol offers unique and unequaled benefits in terms of bi-directionality, security, mobility and accurate localization that are not addressed by other LPWAN technologies. These benefits can provide the diverse use cases and business models that are expected to enable deployments of large-scale LPWAN IoT networks globally.

Vivian Li, Co-Founder at Sensoro

“The bootcamp was a fantastic example of how IoT solutions could make an incredible impact on society”, said Vivian Li, Co-Founder of Sensoro. “In this particular case, it could save countless lives and injuries and help avoid or mitigate property damage.”

The water-level detection system developed by students is an example of the potentially life-changing impact that the IoT and LoRaWAN-based technology could achieve.

The MIT IoT Bootcamp took place May 28 – June 3, where every participant learned how to solve big problems using smart, connected devices.

“Although the potential market space for the IoT is increasingly recognized, the general conception in terms of the potential use of the IoT remains limited,” added Li. “As well as leading the way in the technological development of the IoT, Sensoro also hopes to increase the awareness of the true capabilities of this technology across all areas of society.”

Microsoft Accelerator graduate Sensoro is a leading sensor device and network technology company, and Semtech is a leading supplier of high performance analog and mixed-signal semiconductors and advanced algorithms.