The device can track and predict the movements of the fly — whose scientific name is Drosophila melanogaster — which means that farmers can reduce the degree of manual monitoring.
The RapidAIM system was developed by Dr Nancy Schellhorn, Darren Moore and Laura Jones at CSIRO.
It was tested by some of Australia’s biggest fruit producers in Victoria last year.
Chief operating officer Laura Jones, chief executive Dr Nancy Schellhorn and chief technology officer Darren Moore, all of RapidAIM, the company set up to market their invention.
On the company site, it was pointed out that globally US$30 billion of fruit and vegetable production was lost and about US$18 billion worth of global trade threatened by the fruit fly.
Under the present system of manual monitoring, millions of traps are checked every 7–14 days.
"In Australia, governments manually maintain and check 12,000 traps year round; the state of California maintains 63,000 traps. Many more fruit fly traps and traps for other pests are maintained by growers for pest management," the company said.
The RapidAIM technology combined the knowledge of insect behaviour with proprietary hardware and software to develop a grid of instrumented, low-powered smart traps.
"The traps detect the presence of an insect, sends the data to the cloud for analytics, and generates an alert for an end user," the company said.
"Imagine having a map in front of you with the location of 1000s of traps providing accurate and trustworthy surveillance. With RapidAIM, the location and occurrence of pest outbreaks can be seen on-demand, supporting rapid and efficient response."
Photo: courtesy RapidAIM.io