Tiny chip can clean up the Harbour

Date: 15/11/2013

Joe Dawson - Central Leader 15/11/13

SEWAGE SOLUTION: Boon-Chong Seet with a device which could be flushed down toilets to identify points of cross-contamination between sewage and stormwater pipes.

A tiny microchip flushed down the loo could solve a long-standing environmental problem that has degraded the Manukau Harbour.

Sewage has been polluting stormwater which flows into the harbour for years. It is caused by by the accidental joining of what should be separate pipes during repair work.

Finding and repairing those connecting points has been a difficult task but a group of electrical engineering students may have cracked it. They were put on the case by Manukau Harbour and Onehunga stalwart Jim Jackson.

Mr Jackson approached AUT School of Engineering’s design and creative technologies lecturer Boon-Chong Seet with the idea of deploying the tags farmers use to keep track of cows to follow the sewage journey.

Despite the technology never being used in this way before, Dr Seet says a trio of students made a breakthrough

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