Project Update: SFC

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Last year as part of our ongoing project around water security and fig water collection we developed a remote sensing system that records the total volume of water collected from a small fog collector (SFC).

An SFC is a 1 meter square test collector that is deployed in a test area for 3 to six months and the data collected is used to determine the efficacy of the location in terms of fog collection and is an important factor in designing a large-scale project.

On October 2013 NCDF deployed the first of these monitoring systems on a newly designed SFC made from UV resistant PVC.

The team designed the new collector and brought two of the with them to Nepal; each collector weighed just shy of 30kg and fit into a large duffle bag. 

One collector was ‘dry’ assembled at the Foundation of Sustainable Technologies (FoST) no PVC cement used to allow the collector  to be disassembled and the parts used to source local versions of the various fittings and pipes. PVC plumbing is widely available in Nepal and the general idea is to support the building of new SFC units as needed for field work in Nepal without requiring the materials to be brought in from abroad.

The second collector was brought to Panchthar and assembled on a hilltop between two valleys where reports informed us that fog collection might be successful given the volumes of low-level cloud coming from two different directions depending on the prevailing wind.

It took all day to get to the location and to assemble the SFC. The finished collector was erected close to a small temple located on the hilltop where the Priest and his family can keep an eye on it. 

When we left the hilltop the LED in the unit was signalling a charge and the SFC was waiting for the fog to roll in. We’ll be going back in May to collect the data and to look at it before making a decision to either leave the unit in place or move it to a new test area. 

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