Thursday, 25 June 2020 11:10

Data-driven irrigation

Written by  Staff Reporters

A web-based technology is now available to help farmers better manage their water resources and improve decision-making around irrigation.

Predictive Irrigation will integrate with existing farm sensors, including flow meters, soil moisture probes and weather stations. It then provides highly accurate information about future irrigation needs relevant to the unique characteristics of any given site.

The new technology is a joint venture between Watermetrics, a trading division of Arthur D Riley & Co Ltd (ADR) and technology provider SWAN Systems.

“Leveraging Watermetrics’ considerable investment in next generation IoT networks, our customers now have predictive irrigation software to deliver precision irrigation best practice,” says Watermetrics marketing and development manager Bruce Franks. 

“When it comes to displaying information from sensors, this technology takes it to the next level.

“It’s predictive, it helps farmers look ahead the next few days when it comes to making irrigation decisions. 

“They can take into account what the weather forecast looks like, as well as what shape their soil is in, and then use the technology to make decisions that are highly accurate.”

Watermetrics agronomist Richard Campion says the software’s algorithm calculations are very precise and enable such a high level of accuracy.

“Farmers can base their decisions on data that is of the highest integrity, meaning they can irrigate as efficiently as possible while protecting their soil and improving the quality of their pastures and yields.”

Watermetrics says adopting the new Predictive Irrigation platform is part of its commitment to the latest technology, enabling customers to maximise farm efficiency and profitability.

“For some time now, we’ve been searching for the right solution in this area,” says Franks. “We found it with SWAN Systems’ software, and we’re excited to offer the Predictive Irrigation solution to our customers.”

What this means for Watermetrics customers is an improved method of optimising and managing water and nutrient application. 

“With Predictive Irrigation, farmers can develop very precise schedules,” says Campion. “They can also analyse temperatures, evaporation and crop growth factors. This kind of advanced technology is essential in modern farming because it allows farmers to tailor an irrigation plan that takes into account when water is in abundance and when it’s short.”

Watermetrics’ says its partnership with SWAN Systems and the introduction of the Predictive Irrigation solution will enable their customers to extract maximum value from their current monitoring systems and streamline management decisions.

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