Application of wireless sensor networks in the field of agriculture

Applications of WSN in agricultural environment monitoring systems Abstract: The Wireless Sensors Network WSN is nowadays widely used to build decision support systems to solve many real-world problems.

【TOSHIBA】Wireless sensor network

One of the most interesting fields having an increasing need of decision support systems is agricultural environment monitoring. Agricultural environment monitoring has become an important field of control and protection, providing real-time system and control communication with the physical world. An intelligent and smart WSN system can collect and process large amount of data from the beginning of the monitoring and manage air quality, soil conditions, to weather situations.

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The proposed system collects and monitors information related to the growth environment of crops outside and inside greenhouses using WSN sensors and CCTV cameras. The temperature and humidity sensors are developed in-house and both sensors are very reliable. Furthermore, the system allows automatic control of greenhouse environment remotely and thus improves the productivity of crops. This paper presents hardware architecture, system architecture and software process control of the agriculture environment monitoring system.

Study on an Agricultural Environment Monitoring Server System using Wireless Sensor Networks

Published in: Prior to PA, farmers had to rely on satellite and aircraft imagery or other map based systems to accurately target their growing areas. Precision Agriculture has the benefit of providing real time feed-back on a number of different crop and site variables. As its name implies, Precision Agriculture is precise in both the size of the crop area it monitors as well as in the delivery amounts of water, fertilizer, etc.

This technology can isolate a single plant for monitoring and nurturing, or more typically an area in the tens or hundreds of square feet.

Wireless Sensor Networks for Agricultural Applications

The data collection, monitoring and materials application to the crops allows for higher yields and lower cost, with less impact to the environment. Each area receives only what is required for its particular space, and at the appropriate time and duration. A wireless sensor network for Agriculture is similar to those used in other industries such as Industrial Controls, Building Automation and Security Systems. The WSN system requires a centralized control unit with user interface, communication gateways and routers, power elements and most important — the sensors.

Unlike other systems, Precision Agriculture requires a unique software model for each geographical area, the intrinsic soil type and the particular crop or plants. For example, each location will receive its own optimum amount of water, fertilizer and pesticide.

The Use of Wireless Sensor Networks in Precision Agriculture

Less frequent monitoring may be acceptable for certain slow growth crops and areas that have very stable, uniform climate conditions. While Agriculture is typically thought of to be land-based, the concepts presented here are also applicable to water and under-water eco-systems. For example, a WSN is used to monitor kelp beds and algae growths.

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Air temperature for farms is often as critical as water temperature for marine plants. A similar correlation can be made for the amount of sunlight and pH levels. The modeling software incorporates the data from the sensors in a feedback loop which activates the Control Network.

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This provides the optimal amounts of agricultural inputs to the individual locations and varying times. As the cost for sensors and communications infrastructure trend downward, more growers are implementing Wireless Sensor Networks for their crops. This is becoming more prevalent with smaller farms, micro-farms and urban farms. In each of these situations, the crop yields are critical as growers may only have a very small area and unique space requirements to contend with.