The VRS-1


The VRS-1 is a flex­i­ble food pro­duc­tion sys­tem, well-suit­ed towards appli­ca­tions with sig­nif­i­cant space con­straints. The design fea­tures an aero­pon­ic sys­tem with 96 plants arranged in ver­ti­cal rails of 6-plants each. It occu­pies a floor­space of 9 square feet and sports cast­ers for easy mobil­i­ty. The sys­tem was designed by Max­im King, Gary Miloso­vich and Tyler Reed and fab­ri­cat­ed at the Colum­bus Idea Foundry. Along the way, Gary engi­neered a set of fix­tures that allow the sys­tem to be built with a rel­a­tive­ly small set of com­mon tools.

The sys­tem has mul­ti­ple options for light­ing, con­fig­urable chan­nels that allow for man­ag­ing ver­ti­cal and hor­i­zon­tal spac­ing between plants, and an scal­able instance of the HAPI automa­tion sys­tem. The design includes the abil­i­ty to daisy-chain the plumb­ing of mul­ti­ple VRS-1 sys­tems into a com­mon reser­voir. We fore­see imple­ment­ing the sys­tem as:

  • A stand-alone food pro­duc­tion unit
  • A star-con­fig­u­ra­tion with 3 – 6 units radi­al­ly ori­ent­ed to a com­mon reser­voir or aquapon­ic pool.
  • A large matrix with dozens of con­nect­ed, semi-autonomous sys­tems

Final draw­ings and build instruc­tions for the sys­tem will be post­ed online soon. If you would like more infor­ma­tion regard­ing the VRS-1, please feel free to con­tact us through our Con­tact page.


Sys­tem design began with a “nap­kin sketch” that Tyler made in Sketchup. Max­im took those ear­ly sketch­es through a series of improve­ments result­ing in a more mature set of sketch­es.


Max­im, Gary and Tyler then col­lab­o­rat­ed via email and tele­con­fer­ences on the design and Max cap­tured the design deci­sions in CAD draw­ings.


Gary devel­oped fix­tures from the CAD draw­ings that Tyler then used to fab­ri­cate the actu­al com­po­nents.

Evolution Images.pptx - Microsoft PowerPoint_2013-11-01_09-22-36


Peo­ple at the Colum­bus Idea Foundry pitched in to help fin­ish the fab­ri­ca­tion while iGrow com­plet­ed the pic­ture by loan­ing us an incred­i­ble light: a 360 degree induc­tion light that they’ve recent­ly devel­oped.

Evolution Images.pptx - Microsoft PowerPoint_2013-11-10_22-52-17


The unit made it’s demo debut at the OSU Food Inno­va­tion Center’s Sit­u­at­ing Food sym­po­sium.

Evolution Images.pptx - Microsoft PowerPoint_2013-11-10_22-50-43


HAPI (Hydro­ponic Automa­tion Plat­form Ini­tia­tive) is an open-source project of the Open Com­mu­ni­ty Devel­op­ment Cor­po­ra­tion.


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