Wireless Greenhouse Sensing System
Good soil is the key to high-quality plants. Coupled with the scale of modern agriculture, successful growing requires the implementation of sophisticated technologies in order to maintain and expand operations. Inefficient and wasteful methods of soil monitoring and plant maintenance commonly develop into dramatic time and cost expenditures for growers.
With this dilemma in mind, the Wi-Green team developed a system that offers a cost-effective and easy-to-use alternative to currently expensive and impractical soil monitoring techniques. Their solution implements a wireless mesh network of sensor nodes allowing for easy, fast, and remote monitoring of soil conditions, including moisture, temperature and relative humidity.
To tie the system together, a user-friendly graphical interface displays current soil conditions at each node, illustrates trends in plant conditions, and alerts the user when emergency conditions occur, enabling growers to easily track problem areas and resolve specific soil issues with pin-point accuracy.
“This system solves grower needs by efficiently monitoring plant conditions and targeting plants in need of care,” said Wi-Green team member Gregg Fischer. “As a result, users can save time, energy, water and plant replacement costs.”
The Wi-Green system is inherently expandable, with each node costing approximately $110. In the future, however, drops in materials costs combined with technology refinements, could potentially reduce the price-per-node to between $10 – $20, broadening the potential user base tremendously.