To better understand an automated lawn watering system, We analyzed a 4’ x 4’ bed of grass that was split into 2 sides - the experimental, soil sensor side and the control side. The soil sensor was placed in the center of the experimental side and was connected to a water pump that automatically turned on when the volumetric water content reached a lower threshold. The system was ran from an Arduino board, and data was collected on Excel. The sensor was calibrated from measurements of the mass of the soil and water and compared to the expected value. The control side was watered according to a recommended water schedule for lawns. At the end of the 8 week study, the grass was analyzed by its blade length and root length. The experimental side’s blade length and root length were 2.1 inches longer (153%) and 0.67 inches longer (132%) than the control side, respectively. A Student’s T-test showed a statistically significant P-value of 0.0001. The daily water usage was also measured, and the experimental system used 68% less water than the control side. We were able to conclude that an automatic watering system for a soil both produces healthier grass and reduces water usage by a significant amount.

Document Type

Final Report

Author's School

McKelvey School of Engineering

Author's Department

Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science

Class Name

Mechanical Engineering and Material Sciences Independent Study

Date of Submission