Innovations

Cyber algae farming plays Paris

September 1, 2013
AlgaeIndustryMagazine.com

ecologicStudio’s HORTUS.PARIS cyber algae farming on display Image: ecologicStudio

ecologicStudio’s HORTUS.PARIS cyber algae farming on display Image: ecologicStudio

The system is equipped with ambient light, sensing technologies and a custom-designed virtual interface. Image: ecologicStudio

The system is equipped with ambient light, sensing technologies and a custom-designed virtual interface. Image: ecologicStudio

EcologicStudio explored cyber algae farming with their “HORTUS.PARIS,” an experimental prototype exhibit that was recently showcased at La Fondation EDF in Paris, France. The display harnessed extreme agricultural technology to host a number of micro- and macroalgal organisms in unconventional ways.

QR codes adorn each of the “plots” in which visitors can access information about the garden's progress. Image: ecologicStudio

QR codes adorn each of the “plots” in which visitors can access information about the garden’s progress. Image: ecologicStudio

The exhibit encouraged engagement from the visitors via what the London-based creators called “cyber gardening.” The working model on display was equipped with ambient flows of energy (light radiation), matter (biomass and carbon dioxide), sensing technologies and a custom-designed virtual interface which processed digital information (tweets, images, stats) and brought those components together to induce multiple mechanisms of self-regulation and evolve novel forms of self-organization.

Visitors contributed to the man-made ecosystem first hand, such as by activating an air pump system within photo bioreactors to adjust the nutrients’ content. HORTUS’s harvesting terrain data was delivered through feeding its emergent virtual garden, accessible via smartphones. The participants locally and globally sent tweets to nurture the “virtual plots” – a computer generated sedimentation process.

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