Author: Tuan Fachinetti
“According to estimates compiled by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), by 2050 we will need to produce 60 percent more food to feed a world population of 9.3 billion. Doing that with a farming-as-usual approach would take too heavy a toll on our natural resources. Thus, we have no choice but to embark on a greener revolution.”
In light of the greener revolution mentioned by the UN, it has become crucial for agriculture to be digitalized in order to improve efficiency, which is enabled by the Internet of Things. It is no secret now that farmers have been embracing the concept of precision agriculture in recent years. Precision agriculture refers to agricultural practices that utilize smart technologies in order to improve their yields.
Internet of things(IoT) in farming management and sustainable agriculture
The applications for IoT within agriculture are infinite since every single process can be either automated or have its efficiency increased drastically since they were previously based on tradition and empiric activities and now they have the capability to be based on big data and precise analysis of conditions. Seeding, planting, pre and post-harvest, irrigation, fertilization, pest control, equipment monitoring, tracking of moving assets, water systems control, microclimate and condition monitoring are some of the many applications that IoT have within a farm.
Furthermore, enhancing farm activities with agricultural technology allows for several benefits. For example, an integrated sensing solution that measures the microclimate of the area and does accurate predictions and forecasts of the upcoming changes can allow farmers to make smarter management decisions and take control of the crop yield, as it will give the farmer the opportunity to act promptly and take the necessary measures that their specific crop needs for each climate situation at real-time.
This same device that has a weather station can also have integrated soil monitoring capabilities, giving the farmer the necessary information regarding temperature, salinity, and moisture. Having control over the moisture levels of the soils enables smart irrigation systems that are not only good for the crops themselves but also decrease the amount of water that is wasted. The same is applied to the smart sensors in tanks, silos, and other water systems. Therefore, it can be said that precision farming or agriculture 4.0, enabled by the Internet of Things, not only improves the productivity, efficiency, and profits of the farmers, assisting them in building a solid farming management system, but it also helps them to build sustainable agriculture.
Leveraging low-earth-orbit satellite constellation to empower precision agriculture
All of the smart technologies mentioned above are key to more efficient and sustainable production patterns. However, they have one issue in common: connectivity. Rural areas are typically poor in cellular coverage, and the countries that produce most food in the world are vast in their territories.
That is exactly the issue tackled by Sateliot, deploying the world’s first LEO(Low-Earth-Orbit) satellite constellation that will allow standard NB-IoT devices to switch seamlessly between cellular infrastructures and satellites while maintaining the hardware specifications.
About the author: Tuan Fachinetti is a specialist in the IoT applications in the agriculture industry, passionate about satellite communication and it's use cases in smart farming. Connect with him or drop him a line for a talk: firstname.lastname@example.org
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