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AGRiSPIRE Innovations

  • Author(s): Hammon, Nik;
  • Chang, Derek;
  • Alamamreh, Jumana;
  • Funez, Elias;
  • Ordorica, Donald
  • et al.
No data is associated with this publication.


This report aims to decrease some of the difficulties associated with the practice of vertical farming in addition to providing a uniquely integrated design process. The collaboration of several systems including, an agriculturally inspired farm automation tool, intelligent precision farming practices, a purification and highly developed reverse osmosis process for water purification, and a self-healing concrete solution that will provide seismic resistant structure. Our mechanized farming tool operates on a railing system allowing it to reach all area on a floor to sow seeds, spray pesticides, pull out weeds, and harvest strawberries hands-free. Precision farming is the practice of adjusting crop treatments in order to increase production efficiency. This system stores all factors which significantly affect crop yields and develop an approximation tool to gain a better understanding of these critical factors and crop response. To purify the water that is responsible for the irrigation on all floors a filtration system that uses a Thin Film Composite (TFC) membrane to do reverse osmosis filtration. The building’s design utilizes recycled materials and structured to handle static and dynamic loads on each floor.



To design a system that purifies water and uses eco-friendly fertilizer to support user-controlled mechanized farming practices within a structure that meets the strength and serviceability requirements of an 18 story building.



Design an autonomous agricultural robotic system that is capable of planting strawberry seeds, weed control, spraying pesticide, and harvesting. Create a sustainable, low-cost precision agriculture technique that enables users to interact remotely and make decisions for the vertical farm based on the suggestions created from data collected from low energy sensors. Design a water purification system that is capable of providing enough clean water for irrigation use while keeping the pH level in check and providing liquid fertilizer for the crops to grow. Design a multi-story building that meets both strength and serviceability requirements when subjected to lateral loads and gravity loads.


Design Prompt

In order to produce high-quality food and feed a growing world population, new methods of sustainable farming must be developed that are designed to increase yields and reduce ecological impact. Unlike traditional cultivation, vertical farming has the potential to reduce the need to create additional farmland and increase the productivity of a farm by a factor of 4 to 6 depending on the crop due to year-round productivity. Our goal will be to establish a robotic-centric approach to agriculture that takes advantage of modern

engineering simulations, mathematics, the revolution in sensor technology, controlled environment agriculture, fertigation, and indoor farming techniques to transform modern food production. The spire will have an 18-floor, 256.5 x 114 ft farm located around the UC Irvine campus, and our goal is optimizing it to produce 15,000 tons of food annually. This paper has been peer reviewed by: Mazen Nader Alkhatib, Abdullah Jawhar, Myriam Khalil, Daniela Uriostegui, and Jesus Reyes.



Presented at the UCI Engineering Conference, February 16-18, 2019 at University of California Irvine.

Peer Reviewers:   Mazen Nader Alkhatib, Abdullah Jawhar, Myriam Khalil, Daniela Uriostegui, Jesus Reyes

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UCI Engineering Conference, University of California Irvine