Hardware e Software Innovations.
According to the “European Innovation Partnership on Water’ (http://www.eip-water.eu/)” one of the main priority in water management is to promote development and spread of brand new decision support systems (DSS), exploiting the power of the rising technologies (informatics and electronics).
Hydrotech has been developed to realize a brand new industrial DSS prototype to support sustainable management of irrigation
ITC companies involved had tested and valued the hardware and software innovations according to criteria like reliability problems, performances, non-stop availability of services, ergonomic and easy user’s interfaces etc.
Some specific dataloggers (designated as RTU) had been tested during the project development. These provide continuous data collect from soil-plant-atmosphere system through some appropriate sensors
Both the Meteorological RTU (that works as a real agrometeorological station) and the Soil RTU (connected to some “capacitive”, analogic and digital sensor to detect water volumetric content, temperature and saline soils at different ground depths) any time collect data and send them to a “coordinator” that is inside the company itself.
The company data transfer system is able to use specific wireless technologies (in particular the ZigBee protocol) if RTU are located in some farm’s points that provides radio visibility with the coordinator. The coordinator has to receive data, store and process them hourly and daily and finally send them to the cloud. The data transmission on remote servers is usually provided by a GSM/GPRS system.
A specific application-RTU has been thought to receive controls form the cloud, open, control and close the solenoid valves (2-position and 1-position), send control and diagnostic signals to the cloud.
The communication between the application-RTU and the cloud can be driven by the coordinator or directly through the GPRS.
The system has been developed to work with cloud computing, so the data archiving and their elaboration is made on remote servers in order to make the application easily available everywhere and to allow to use different systems.
A management software that uses original interfaces allows users to: manage information and parameters from the whole configured crops, visualize meteorological data collected and predicted, manage the irrigation register for each crop, visualize information about the balance’s results, the data detected by the sensors and the fixture condition, receive advices about the irrigation interventions, send commands for the remote control of the irrigation system (solenoid valves, hydrants, pumps).
The system provides a fast transfer of soil information through the latest generation innovation such as broadband internet, mobile systems (smartphones and tablets) and apps.
The WEB version of the software uses an interface’s setting that allows to have everything under control and to intervene interactively on planning and execution.
The WEB version is thought for a static use, beside the APP (now available on Adroid) version is though for a dynamic use, in fact it allows to insert field data, consult the data elaboration in order to take decisions in real time.