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The concept behind my project was to create an application to improve the sorting of recyclable packaging into various waste streams. Through my observations, students on campus at UWTSD appeared unsure which bin to place recyclable waste into and I recognised that their "best guess" scenario unfortunately resulted in accidental contamination of individual waste streams. My project aimed to provide a scanner on a waste bin, allowing students to scan a product's barcode which returned relevant information to an interface screen above the bin, thus informing the user which section of the bin to use.
I achieved the aims of my project by attaching a barcode scanner to a Raspberry Pi. Then I linked a web-based platform which interfaced with both the hardware and a public Application Programming Interface (API) to retrieve product details. When I used this in conjunction with a local (Swansea) recycling database application, I was able to accurately obtain and show on screen information about the correct recycling bin for products. Despite COVID restrictions, I have successfully created and tested a working prototype within the limitations of lockdown and social distancing regulations.
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