Wednesday, 07 December 2016 08:39

Israeli firm develops solar tag for smart agriculture

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An Internet of Things (IoT) systems and energy harvesting solutions provider has devised an autonomous, wireless solar tag for enabling precision agriculture and smart irrigation.

Haifa-based Sol Chip said the Sol Chip Comm (SCC) device was ultra-compact, maintenance-free, solar-powered and could connect to a wide variety of sensors in the cloud.

The device will be on display at the Irrigation Show in Las Vegas on 7 and 8 December.

The SCC device would feed real-time data from up to hundreds of agriculture-related sensors, including those that monitor soil moisture, soil temperature, ambient temperature, air temperature, nutrient levels and more, into a precision agriculture application server.

This data would then be analysed by an application to make data-driven adjustments for optimising water and fertilisation consumption and improving crop yields.

The SCC device is designed to operate continuously for more than 10 years with no maintenance requirements, removing the need to constantly replace and discard batteries.

As a wireless device, it eliminates costs and time needed to connect the deployed sensors.

Sol Chip develops and manufactures maintenance-free IoT solutions based on its LightBattery Everlasting Solar Battery technology, a compact battery that can supply energy for the lifetime of IoT devices with little maintenance.

The company is offering an evaluation kit for precision agriculture and smart irrigation, which includes two SCC solar tags, two sensors, a wireless gateway, all the necessary accessories, and access to third-party Web server and support.

The components of the evaluation kit are integrated, enabling the evaluation kit to be rapidly deployed for testing in an open field or greenhouse.

"With our LightBattery technology, Sol Chip is uniquely positioned to realise our vision of enabling billions of autonomous IoT devices for many different market sectors in a way that is cost-effective and environmentally sustainable," said Dr Shani Keysar, the founder and chief executive of Sol Chip.

"Our new SCC device clearly demonstrates these qualities for precision agriculture and smart irrigation and we are working on more applications for additional market sectors."

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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