Introduction: Zero Gravity Grow Box

Hello, my name is Cara and I am currently a junior in high school. I decided to take on this project because I was really interested in the task. I plan to major in aerospace engineering. I love working on projects and with school, I have built up my problem solving and Autodesk Inventor skills.

Step 1: Brainstorming and Sketches

After brainstorming, I came up with these sketches. Since the parameters for this project is a 50 cm cube, I wanted to maximize the growing space as much as possible. Using the zero-gravity aspect, I could position the plants to be upside down or sideways. I created right triangle-shaped plant beds that go around the perimeter of the cube. There are four in total, and the unique shape gives each plant plenty of room to grow without intertwining with the other ones. I added an LED light rod to the center of my build since plants grow towards the light.

Step 2: Designing on Autodesk

In addition to the plant beds, I installed doors to the sides and the front of my project for easy access. The ones of the side allow access to remove the plant beds and the front door is for easy access harvesting or fixing the inside of the box.

Step 3: Installing Plant Beds

The plant beds are a 90-degree right triangle. Both sides are see-through so you can see the water levels. This project could be able to incorporate hydroponics as well. There is also a plug on the back to fill it with water.

The purpose of my separate plant bed design is the idea of efficiency. Each plant bed can have different kinds of food. For example, one can grow lettuce and other, carrots. This way you can open the doors and harvest each section once they are ready, instead of taking out all of the plants if they were all connected. Plants grow at different speeds so I wanted individual custom plant beds. Each plant bed is held by two supports connected to the sides of the box.

Step 4: Additional Views

Step 5: Reflection

Room for Improvements:

I tried to add as many details as possible to my build on Autodesk Inventor but a big setback for me was the dimensions.

Electrons could be incorporated into the plant beds to electronically measure the water levels, moisture, time, and plant growth.

The doors are not sealed and do not click in place on my digital drawing

Step 6: Conclusion

Overall this was a very fun project to make. I enjoyed coming up with ideas and sketches for it. This is my first Instructables contest I am entering. This project taught me about time management and it improved my skills in Inventor. This task was more difficult than I thought, and sketching on paper to a digital assembly was extremely difficult. I made over 20 components and I had to get all the dimensions correct. Lastly, thank you for reading and reviewing my instructable for the Grow Box.

Growing Beyond Earth Maker Contest

Participated in the
Growing Beyond Earth Maker Contest