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Tica-Lab - Electrified mosquito net

A insecticide-free alternative to fight against malaria

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Malaria is the most frequently occurring and serious vector-borne infection among parasitic illnesses. Each year, this ever-growing disease is responsible for more than 600 000 deaths.

The WHO recommends the use of insecticide-treated bed nets to lower the transmission of malaria.
However, the WHO also highlights that the resistance to the insecticides is increasing. In 29 countries all types of insecticides are now inefficient. In the "World malaria 2021 report", the agency concludes that it is an emergency to find new vector control tools.

Based on that report, we had created another solution, killing mosquitoes without using chemicals. We are developing a bed net which electrocute the mosquitoes, without any risk for humans.
A solar panel is provided in order to be efficient in all the areas, even in those without running electricity.

We are working together with universities, NGOs and companies to garner expert feedback and understand how the local needs can

General presentation:

Short video (8 seconds, to illustrate our mosquito net):

Longer video (4:25min) to explain the project:

Our mosquito net is composed by 3 main elements: an electrically conductive net, a centrale control unit and a solar panel. This one allows the utilization of the in areas without running electricity and is couple with a USB-C plug for areas with it. The net can be separated from the electrical unit in order to being washed. 


Introduction

Mosquito borne diseases kill almost 1 million people each year in the world, and impacts the socio-economic development of the affected countries.  

For some of these diseases, there is no vaccine or effective treatment. The most efficient way is then vector control.

Insecticide Treated Nets (ITN) represent a solution with the highest level of evidence and recommendation to prevent malaria and aborvirosis (dengue, yellow fever, zika…). It offers individual protection (for people sleeping under the net) and also community protection: the nets kill the mosquitoes, so it reduces the number of mosquitoes in the area.

However, mosquitoes develop resistance to these pesticides. 29 countries have reported resistance to the 4 most commonly used classes of insecticides.

Moreover, these insecticides are toxic for humans (especially for the neurodevelopment of children) and for the environment (killing pollinating insects).

For these reasons, it becomes necessary to find new tools and strategies for vector control.

Electrocuting mosquitoes would permit to kill the mosquitoes, so it confers an individual and collective protection, without toxicity and with no risk of resistance.


Methods

Mosquito electrocution

We have to develop a grid which electrocute the mosquito when it lands on. The insect doesn’t need to touch “perfectly” two electrodes: in fact, the mosquito modifies the disruptive field of the grid, generating an electric arc, which burns the insect.  

To determine which voltage and current is needed to kill mosquitoes, we place in a plastic transparent box 100 mosquitoes. On one side, plastic is removed and replaced by the electrified net. Then, we turn on the power supply, with a fixed voltage and a fixed maximum current. We leave the mosquitoes inside during 20 minutes, and then we put them in an observation cage. It isn’t possible to say at this moment how much mosquitoes are dead, because some of them are just “KO” but not dead. The following days, we count the dead mosquitoes. We repeat this experiment for different values of voltage and current. 


Power supply

This device must be able to be used in every place of the world, without running electricity. That's why it must be able to work with a solar panel, which charges a li-ion battery.

Li-ion battery has a nominative voltage of 3.7V. We need 1500V to electrocute mosquitoes (see the result section). We have to increase the voltage from 3.7V to 1500V.

To achieve it, we use a flyback converter that we have designed. The PWM signal is given by an Arduino uno board. In final version, Arduino board will be by an implemented micro-controller also used for capacitive sensing.

The transformer had been made by a Chinese company, customed for our need. We asked for 1:450 turn ratio, 22µH primary inductance and 30kHz nominal frequency.


Electrified net

To be electrocuted, the mosquito must make the connection between two electrodes of opposite polarity. Therefore, we need to weave a net with 2 conductive grids and non-conductive wires.  

We called the architecture of the net "double interdigitated comb".

For non-conductive wires, we use polyester, which is the usual thread for mosquito-net. For conductive ones, we use stainless steel, which are more cost-effective and much stronger than aluminum wires.  

It is not possible to weave this architecture with...

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Zip Archive - 524.28 kB - 10/22/2022 at 08:46

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PCB - Kicad.zip

This is the schematic and the gerber files of our flyback

Zip Archive - 333.65 kB - 10/21/2022 at 13:04

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Moving average - Data 20 oct 2022.xlsx

This is the data that we have measured with an arduino uno, our moving average algorithm and our net.

sheet - 590.51 kB - 10/21/2022 at 13:03

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moving_average.ino

It is our arduino sketch to calculate a moving average of values (from analogRead)

ino - 639.00 bytes - 10/21/2022 at 13:03

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pasteur results.xlsx

These are the survival rates of mosquitoes, depending on the voltage or intensity of the electrical shocks

sheet - 21.57 kB - 10/21/2022 at 13:03

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View all 6 files

  • 1 × Microcontroller: arduino uno board
  • 1 × Transformer 1:450 Primary: 22µH, Frequency: 30kHz
  • 1 × Stainless steel - polyester net
  • 1 × Solar panel 6V - 1W
  • 1 × Li-ion battery 1000mAh, 18650, 4V

View all 6 components

  • Capacitive sensing - moving average

    Mattis EYNARD10/22/2022 at 08:39 0 comments

    For the moment, we use an arduino board connected to a computer to measure the net capacity in real time. The signal is very noisy (the capacitance at the terminals of the net being very sensitive to the environment), so we wrote a moving average program to smooth this signal.

    Here are the results of the tests we were able to perform, we can clearly see the moments when we approach the net and the moments when we move away from it.

  • Flyback transformer test

    Mattis EYNARD10/21/2022 at 13:24 0 comments

    The arduino uno is used to generate a 30kHz squared signal, to control the mosfet.

    In green you can see our flyback converter.


    As we can see on this second picture, for an input voltage of 50mV we get 17V. The measured ratio is 1:340, a bit less than 1:450 which was expected.

  • Transition to opensource

    Mattis EYNARD10/13/2022 at 14:00 0 comments

    Our first electrical simulations had been done on Matlab/Simulink, because it was the software that we use at our schools.

    Now we are redesigning them on SPICE, which is free and opensource, in order to then share the ressources on Github.

    We keep you in touch!

  • Maker Faire Rome - 10/22

    Mattis EYNARD10/07/2022 at 14:16 0 comments

    Mattis and Jeanne represented Tica Lab as exhibitors in the Maker Faire in Rome from the 7 to the 9th of October. We had a stand where we met different people for making awareness about malaria problems, discuss about our project and make us more known. During those day, we presented our first textile prototype, our 3D printed central unit and a mockup of the main project.

  • First prototype of the central unit - 09/22

    Mattis EYNARD10/07/2022 at 14:15 0 comments

    We designed a first prototype of central unit that can welcome all the electronical elements, an USB-C plug and the solar panel. The unit has an on/off button and can be separate from the net to put the central panel outside for charging it.

  • Net prototype part 2 - 09/22

    Mattis EYNARD10/07/2022 at 14:14 0 comments

    In collaboration with the IFTH, a French textile industry and research center we had elaborated a new net prototype with a more industrial perspective. They made a net based on the sewing of an iron wire. 

  • Meeting a French weaver

    Mattis EYNARD10/07/2022 at 14:12 0 comments

    Last week Jeanne and Mattis met a French weaver in order to generate technical solutions to create and produce a bigger prototype. 

    They had the opportunity to learn the intricacies of weaving works during a fascinatingly educational visit of the facilities. 

    This knowledge is truly enlightening and useful for our project; knowing the industrial requirements will lead us to create a more practical design that will  be easier to produce, and more cost-effective with regard to production.

  • 4S Contest - 09/21

    Mattis EYNARD10/07/2022 at 14:11 0 comments

    4S Innovation is a contest, created by the French bank “Le credit Mutuel” in order to promote innovation in the young generation. 

    We had the chance to take part in this contest and to participate to numerous workshops that helped us improve the project. The final round was yesterday, and we are one of the four winners! 

    This means we won 4000€, along with a coaching provided by the Credit Mutuel in order to help us enhance our project. This is an awesome help to the project and we are really thankful to the Credit Mutuel for it!

  • A new website! - 09/21

    Mattis EYNARD10/07/2022 at 14:07 0 comments

    Jeanne Lallemand, our communication manager at Tica Lab who studies industrial design at ENSCI Les Ateliers, has just published our new website!

    Lots of effort were put into making beautiful drawings in order to make it nice to look at so make sure to check it out!

    You can visit it here : tica-lab.org

    Please enjoy!

  • Test at Pasteur Institute - 08/21

    Mattis EYNARD10/07/2022 at 14:02 0 comments

    During July, we had the opportunity to test our net directly on mosquitoes at the Paster institute in Paris. 

    Our aim was to find the most effective voltage and current to electrocute them.

    For this, we made a Plexiglas box, with a window closed by our electrified net. We applied different voltage-current pairs to see which suited best our application. After drawing the survivor curves we were able to analyse the efficiency of our net. Further researches will be published in a little article soon.

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