Meshkat Botshekan '19: Reducing the carbon footprint

Meshkat, a Civil and Environmental Engineering PhD student at MIT, collaborates with UMassD professors to develop app designed to help fight the effects of climate change.

Meshkat Botshekan '19, UMassD alum, is one of the developers of the Carbin app
Meshkat Botshekan worked with Professor Argahavan Louhghalam on developing Carbin, an app that helps fight climate change.

We’ve all heard about how carbon emissions contribute to global warming, raising temperatures by trapping solar energy in the atmosphere. But did you know in cities, quality of pavements can contribute to around 15% of a vehicle’s fuel consumption, which consequently translates to more greenhouse gas emission?

This is what Meshkat Botshekan ’19 noted while collaborating with  500 Internal Server Error

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, and Dr. Mazdak Tootkaboni, assistant and associate professors of Civil and Environmental Engineering, to develop a strategy for reducing the environmental effects and carbon emissions of driving on rough roads.

“Meshkat an extremely talented master’s degree student at the time, worked with us on the development of the algorithm,” says Louhghalam. The app uses data from drivers’ cellphones in a crowdsourced fashion to infer road surface roughness (much broader than potholes), vehicle fuel consumption, and the related greenhouse emissions.

Using Carbin

“Carbin app uses the accelerometer of your smartphone to record the vibrations of your car when you are driving,” says Meshkat who earned his MS in Engineering at UMassD in 2019 and is now a PhD student at the MIT.  “The algorithm, the heart of the app, then converts these vibration signals into a very well-known road quality measure known as International Roughness Index (IRI). Road’s quality impacts the comfort of driving, fuel consumption, and more importantly the environment.”

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