IPN students create water lily collector

The students developed an electromechanical system for the extraction of water lily in Xochimilco

IPN students create hi-tech water lily collector
The lake of Xochimilco has suffered the consequences of water lily proliferation for several decades now - Photo: File photo/EL UNIVERSAL
English 13/12/2018 18:15 Notimex Mexico City Actualizada 18:18

Students of the National Polytechnic Institute (IPN) have developed an electromechanical system for the extraction of water lily in the lake of Xochimilco, seeking to eradicate the proliferation of this harmful fauna that has floated in the area since 1897.

The students of the School of Mechanical and Electrical Engineering (ESIME), Culhuacán campus, Juan Flores García, Óscar Guillermo Galicia Espinosa, César Sánchez Contreras, and Juan Pablo Uribe Téllez, pointed out that this prototype collects the lily directly from the surface of the water. The lily is then put on a container within the device structure and later removed manually.

They indicated that the lake of Xochimilco has suffered the consequences of water lily proliferation for several decades now. Since the species is not endemic to the region, it could irreversibly damage the ecosystem and cause transportation problems for the inhabitants of the area.

"Our project offers a solution to the problem in the lake of Xochimilco. Water lily growth has spun out of control; it hijacks most of the surface of the lake, depriving flora and fauna species of oxygen and light. The water lilies also limit water movement," said student César Sánchez Contreras.

In a statement, the IPN said that the device is meant to be used by residents who suffer the consequences of overflowing lily in the channels and have transportation problems.

Given its dimensions, the container is capable of storing approximately six kilometers of lily in about three hours time.
"At the moment we have no way to empty it automatically or deposit it elsewhere while it is operating. In future design modifications we could increase the size of the container," he said.

He explained that the machine can adapt to the soil density in different areas of the lake.

He added that the system container can be easily emptied to continue with the collection work.
 

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