‘Digital twin and tools for urban farming’ – Melanie Jans-Singh


CSIC Research Talk
Thursday 3rd December 2020

‘Digital twin and tools for urban farming’ – Melanie Jans-Singh


As urban populations are set to rise by 2.6 billion by 2050, and our arable land per person has halved since the 60s, urban agriculture is of increasing interest. The use of hydroponics in particular promises high yields, but their high energy cost could be a hindrance to their environmental footprint. These systems could harness waste resources in cities to become more energy efficient, but there is a lack of evidence and tools to encourage further development.

In this talk, I will present:

1. the development of a digital twin to improve operational efficiencies of a hydroponic farm,

2. a co-simulation method to quantify co-benefits between buildings and greenhouses.

Digital twins (DT) are increasingly discussed to optimise urban energy use and agriculture, and we suggest they are particularly suited to bespoke environments, for which conventional “one size fits all” models cannot cater to their changing operational conditions. The three stages of DT for a hydroponic farm in London will be discussed: Data Creation, Data Analytics and Data Models.

Melanie Jans-Singh just finished her PhD with Ruchi last week and is now working on creating a digital twin for an urban farm. Previously, she read Civil and Environmental Engineering at Imperial College. She is passionate about the integration of nature with infrastructure, and methods to quantify sustainable initiatives.


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