Science Matters

Levo International Technical Advisory Board member and chemist, Mark Meyering is on site in Pignon with Field Scientist Nate Heiden.  The two are doing important science that will set up Levo’s successful deployment of hydroponics in Haiti.  In a recent Facebook post, Mark gave a flavor for what it is like to do science in Haiti.

“Today is all work, all day. I was in the “lab” pretty much continuously.. and I’m pleased to report that the problem of nonlinearity is solved! I replicated the nutrient recipe to manufacturer’s spec, and am re-making the standard curves for TDS vs. mix concentrations. Even better, the literature supports my proposal to use conductivity as a surrogate for elemental analysis of the mix and depletion rates.. a key reference has confirmed the operating range I had proposed for conductivity as TDS is correct, in conjunction with pH. The numbers turned out to be “spot on”, despite the amazingly crude apparatus from which they were generated. Literature and practice are in agreement. Hooray for Science!!! The nutrient formula ready for the restart of the clean Babylon prototype systems. It is simplified, and potentially more robust. Today is a good day…

Another proud accomplishment: I drew lines on the side of a paint bucket to mark 0.5 gallon increments. Accurately. So much we take for granted back home, has to be invented in Haiti. We had no way to measure bulk volume in a pipe system, or measure collected water over a time interval”

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