2 summer internship opportunities in Costa Rica

Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles for Precision Agriculture in Costa Rica

This project will determine the technical and economic feasibility and quantify any environment and social benefits, of utilizing unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) for precision application of treatments to smallholder farms in Costa Rica. The project will also serve to understand the use of UAVs as a tool for performing application trials by Biotech and expand their business model.

Project activities will include engaging with smallholder farmers in the province of Limon to understand their application needs, developing an environmental life-cycle assessment (LCA) of using drones for these applications compared to BAU, and creating a social-life cycle assessment (SLCA) to understand any social improvements. Further, the team will collaborate with engineering students to customize an off-the-shelf UAV for Biotech applications’.

If successful, the project will move into a pilot phase where Biotech, SEAS, and College of Engineering students, will implement trials with smallholder farmers to gather empirical data of production improvements, economic, and social gains. As an added task, a subset of team members will receive an internship at Biotech.

The main purpose of the internship will be to develop a strategy for continuing certification of Biotech in the Costa Rican sustainability program Esencial Costa Rica. Interns will be responsible to identify gaps in the current operations and risks of upcoming changes in the policy for certification and develop a strategy for Biotech to successfully continue as a certified company.

Additional internship details: UAV Agriculture Costa Rica Alfaro

Small Scale Water Desalination With Solar Concentrating Power in Costa Rica

This project will determine the applicability of a Sustainability Without Borders (SWB)-designed Concentrating Solar Power (CSP) Technology for Water Desalination to solve the Costa Rican community of Samara’s water scarceness issues during the dry season.  The project will include a technical feasibility assessment, a social acceptability assessment, and a business and governance plan for the technology.  Further, the project team is expected to provide a recommendation for SWB’s engagement with the community for the near future.

Additional internship details: Desalination Costa Rica Alfaro