Electronic nose to detect fruit ripening

Concrete Jungle started in 2009 as a volunteer-run, fruit and nut distribution organisation in the city of Atlanta. Utilising the vast number of urban fruit trees, the team, started by Craig Durkin and Aubrey Daniels, collect and deliver neglected fruit to shelters and food banks across the city.

concrete jungle raspberry pi

While some urban trees are located in backyards, easily observed and maintained by their owners, others are less cared-for. And given the different harvest times for the multitude of fruit and nuts, knowing when to take the time (and a team) to pick the delicious bounty can be a bit of a hassle.

Concrete Jungle Raspberry Pi

So for the last few months, Craig Durkin has been working on a Pi-powered means of using tech to notify him when fruit is ripe and ready for picking.

We’ve teamed up with Carl DiSalvo’s Public Design Workshop at Georgia Tech to try to create an electronic nose that can smell fruit ripening in a tree. This way, the tree could let us know when it’s ready to be picked.

The build has gone through several variations, all documented via a Hackaday project page. Titled ‘Electronic nose to detect fruit ripening’, Craig has tried and tested several boards, sensors, and fruits while trying to establish what gases he’s looking for, and how to detect them.

With the project still in the testing phase, it would be interesting to see what our community can suggest to help Concrete Jungle with their build.

What are your thoughts?