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Project name: Pollution Control and Fuel Saving System (PCAFSS)

Team Name - Nep Tech


Concept

Traffic jam is the alarming problem in today’s world as well as in our city Kathmandu. Along with it, many problems are attached itself. Air Pollution is one of them. With the tension in head of traffic jam, people often forget to turn their vehicle engines off even in a long traffic jam. This results in more emissions of smoke in the environment which ultimately causes many disasters like Global Warming, Ozone Layer Depletion etc.

             So turning off the engine during traffic jams, railway crossings and so forth for more than 10 to 15 seconds (very generously) would save fuel, because car that is already warm does not need that much effort to re-start, as it is at the proper operating temperature, and oil is distributed around the engine and at a high lubricity. Motor stays within the efficient range of temperatures for more than few minutes, and takes several hours to completely cool down (depending on the weather), so there is definitely no need to keep the car running during short errand.

            We, as a technical student, think it as a serious problem and would like to contribute in a system to reduce it.

      Cars, trucks and other vehicles that are heavy emitters of smoke, also called super-emitters, are really a menace to environment and urban air quality. Motor vehicles produce more air pollution than any other single human activity. One full commuter bus can mean 40 less cars going through your neighborhood.
     In Kathmandu, vehicle exhaust contributes roughly 60% of all carbon monoxide emissions nationwide, and up to 95% in cities. This is really a big problem for our coming generations.

     We, as a team, are thinking of a "System" which is attached in the vehicles that alert persons in traffic jam about the vehicle engine. A user can program it manually as per need in their own way, so that they can get alert of the engine status. This system alerts the user to turn off the engine if it senses a longer traffic jams.

     Hence, it prevents to produce larger mass of smoke. This concept not only helps to reduce pollution but also reduce the cost of the fuel in effective way.


Our project basically works in following way:

1. Motion Detection: This is the core part of our project. If our vehicle is in rest (or have speed less than 1 KMPH) and the vehicle still have its engine ON, then it will activate the sensor of our device.

 

2. Activation of Sensor: After the activation of sensor, it starts the process of obstacle detection. Here, obstacle mainly refer to the complexity of traffic jam and physical structures. The process of obstacle detection is mainly done from two sensors. They are: Ultrasonic Sensor and Proximity Sensor. Ultrasonic sensor generate high frequency sound waves and evaluate the echo which is received back by the sensor. Sensors calculate the time interval between sending the signal and receiving the echo to determine the distance to an object. A proximity sensor emits an electromagnetic field or a beam of electromagnetic radiation (infrared, for instance), and looks for field changes in their return signal. Thus, if these two sensors are combined it could be of great help to this project.

 

3. Image processing: With the help of above sensors, image processing is done. For the image processing, a camera can be fitted beneath the vehicle. The fitted camera is smart enough to rotate as requirement and take videos/pictures at different angles.  Image processing is mainly done to calculate the length of traffic jams by calculating the length and width of road and vehicle.

 

4. Finding Alternative way: Through the image processing, the device search for the alternative ways. If the alternative way is free from jam or if the small vehicle fit between the gap of the jam, then the indicator shows the direction. Also, the device shows several alternative ways (where camera cannot be reached) with the help of GPS (Global Positioning System).

5. Alert: After going through all of the process above, the device finally alert driver to off the engine. The driver may turn off the engine or use any alternative way (if available). Alternative way is tracked using GPS system.

 

Normally, the above process is completed in the time interval of 30 seconds. User can turn off any of the above features depending on their choice. Also they can set the time of interval for the alert.

 

We have explained above whole processes in a flow chart which is given below:

Target Audience


According to Encyclopedia, Kathmandu as of 2011 has an estimated more than 20,000 registered cars on its roads, so traffic congestion is widespread. It is predicted by 2016 Kathmandu will have over 1 Lakh cars on its roads. So, automobile and car owners will be our main audience. This helps them to save fuel and also reduces production of smoke, solves a challenging problem of the world.


Early Feedback

We have pitched our concept to a large mass of audience in our college in presence of entrepreneurs and other software developers. We got positive feedbacks from them. And we got many more suggestions to make this project successful. They found our project really helpful to reduce the burning problems of the world i.e. Air pollution as well as global warming.

Many audiences seem curious on "How a 'Software' can control Global warming and Air pollution?" We explained them well about our project and pitched our core concept. Their feedbacks and curiosity really provided us the strength to make this project success and to provide life to this project.


Competition

We tech students are concerned on how we can use technology to solve the challenging problems of the world. So, we may face across many similar idea projects which can be our major competitors.Thinking in international context,  our strong competition may be with the "Electric Cars" which is the future of the vehicles.

Our project is mainly focused on solving three challenging problems of the world using a software:

1.       Reduce global warming

2.       Reduce smoke production

3.       Saves fuel and money.

We think this is the challenging one to achieve this all with the single software which may be our unique point.

 

Persona

Yes, we have talked with one of our local residents of Kathmandu who is riding a car for 5 years. He had faced many jam problems in his life time. But he is sure he never used to turn off his car engine during traffic jams. And now he wonder how much fuel is wasted and smoke is produced during the traffic jams only.
We talked about our project and he really wants to have our software in his vehicle.

 

Top User Stories

Title:  Save money and fuel

Mr. Raju Basyal is our neighbour. He is a "Maruti Suzuki" vehicle owner. He lives in Dhumbarahi while his office is in Bhaktapur. His office time starts at 10 am. From Dhumbarahi to Bhaktapur of about 10 Km distance, he suffers a lot of traffic jam which is a usual phenomenon in Kathmandu (especially at office time). His one of the complains about his vehicle is that it consumes lots of fuel than expected. We, as an enthusiastic group, tried to find out the cause for it. We found a shocking result there. Every day he passes through traffic jam for at least 15 minute while going to and returning from office (the condition get even worse in some case like when there is a construction of road). This indicates monthly he has to spend about 900 minutes in jam. Of Course, he have never turn off his vehicle's engine (the reason is simple, he always forgets to do so). So, he waste about 3 liters of petrol monthly just due to the traffic jam.

We, as a technical student, get very disappointed with it. First, he is wasting Rs. 4700 yearly (a litre petrol cost Rs. 130 here) just due to the traffic jam. Secondly, the wastage of fossil fuel is not good in present scenario considering the risk of energy crisis. And the most important thing is it is polluting our city, where we have to breathe in and also results global warmingWe, as a tech enthusiastic students start thinking the way to solve it. This is one of the factors that influence us to start this project.

 

Title: Ruined party due to Jam
We are out on one evening for morning walk which is our usual routine. An incident there catches our eye. A car owner is ready to walk in his foot for his party leaving his car behind in a frustrated mood. We were curious to know the reason. We asked him politely for the reason. He explained his story of sorrow in brief.
According to him, he was going for a party on his car. Because of a long traffic jam due to some kind of strike from a political party, he waited for about 1 hour keeping his engine ON. He didn't notice the fuel indicator and he had to leave his car there and walk instead. So, lack of little cautiousness cause his party to be ruined.

 

This incident also strike in our mind seriously. We started to think about the system which can help such people.

 

Title: Our team member’s tragedy
Well, this one is interesting story that was happened to our own team member "Kishor Bikram Oli". He was out for Nuwakot (one of the historical places of our country situated 40 km away) in his motorbike with his girlfriend for dating. Unfortunately, the road was in construction and it was narrowed. He has to wait several time in Jam. He had a liter petrol left in his motorbike while leaving from the home which he thought was sufficient by the time he reached to the petrol pump. But due to not turning off his engine in jam, his petrol finished earlier than expected.
Now, here comes a real tragedy. He, along with his girlfriend, had to push motorbike for 1km to reach the nearest petrol pump. Now guess what? It is one and only reason for his breakup and now "Oli" bro is single.
Considering the above stories, we get this idea on our mind to help people. With our little contribution, we can help people and also minimize the problem of pollution and energy crisis.

Business Model

Our project is not just only for present. We are focused on making this sustainable. As we know, lots of fuel is being wasted on Traffic Jams because of not turning off their automobile engines. Regarding this, People will be interested to invest money on our software.  This will surely help them to save their money. Fossil fuel combustion, particularly as it occurs in motor vehicles, has been identified as the LARGEST contributor to air pollution in the Kathmandu City. So, any automobile/car users would love to own this system on their automobiles.

At first our software will be for the existing vehicles. We will sell our device (software) to auto-mobile users, also distribute it to different automobile companies, servicing centers. Our future plan will be working in collaboration with the auto-mobile companies and hence this system will be inbuilt on new automobiles.

 

Core Technologies

Our project mainly depends on Visual Studio platforms as well as Kinect SDKs and sensors. We'll be using some of the hardware like Ultrasonic Sensors and Proximity sensors. Similarly we'll be using Cameras and other sensing devices for this project.

Address

Microsoft Innovation Center Nepal
Unlimited Technology P Ltd
Unlimited Building, PO Box 956, Khichapokhari, Opp Pashupati Plaza, Kathmandu
Tel: +977 1 2011302 / 2011303 / 2010311
Fax: +977 1 4255454
Email: mic@micnepal.org    

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