ALUVA: An agricultural producer earns profit mainly by employing efficient farming methods, and using resources like water and soil optimally.
Precision farming is an IT-based farm management system to identify, analyse and manage diversities within fields to ensure optimum profitability, sustainability and protection of land resources.
“It was in an attempt to develop more cost-effective procedures in precision farming that the State Horticulture Mission approached the CDAC for the construction of a ‘smart farm’ module. Smart farms could be making their way into the market any time now,” said Anish Sathyan, project leader at CDAC, at Global Agro Meet 2014.
“Once installed in poly-houses, smart farm modules would be able to sense factors like temperature and humidity. It analyses such factors and takes the necessary action. The controller can be configured in the auto-mode, remote-mode or the manual-mode. In auto-mode, based on the sensor feedback, the module will control soil moisture, temperature, and humidity. In manual mode, the corresponding area can be controlled manually. While configured in the remote mode, it enables the user to use a mobile phone to call a number that is configured for each system, and use a combination of codes to make the necessary changes.
“Currently, two prototypes of the system are installed at the Vellayani Agricultural College and at the farm owned by Cicil Chandran at Neyyattinkara in Thiruvananthapuram,” he said. The CDAC, which developed the technology, will soon transfer it to third parties who can construct and market the device.
“This device can be used in open sectors also. However, temperature control function becomes redundant in that case. Pest control functions have not been built into system yet. We have started working on it,” he said. Netafim Junior and Rain Bird, which are the popular products in market, are installed at costs of around `75,000-`1,00,000. The expected cost of smart farm controller is less than `25,000.