The IOTA Foundation is working together with the German “Landesbetrieb Landwirtschaft Hessen” on a pilot project called “IotAgrar”. Initially, irrigation technology is to be optimised for horticulture and agriculture.
The IOTA Foundation can add another name to its long list of cooperation partners: This time it is the state-owned state enterprise Landwirtschaft Hessen, an authority with the aim of advising and training the horticulture and agriculture sector. Under the title “IotAgrar”, the foundation now wants to sound out how irrigation can be made more efficient through automated measurements and data exchange, according to a press release (German). Also on board is peerOS, which develops software modules based on IOTA and makes hardware compatible by retrofitting.
“IotAgrar” – how IOTA could score points in agriculture
The starting point for “IotAgrar” is the experience of recent years, which have made the artificial irrigation of agricultural land necessary due to particular drought conditions. However, the systems used for this purpose are usually not yet digitalised and the amount of water used is still read in analogue form and in some cases not until the end of the season. peerOS has now equipped water meters with GPS and pressure sensors that transmit their data in real time via LTE to IOTA’s Tanglenet. This enables the farmer to see at any time how much water is used, where and when, and to draw conclusions about whether his approach is in line with the recommendations in terms of climate efficiency. They would also receive warnings if their water consumption threatened to exceed the allocated water rights. The authority also envisages using the sensors to check pressure conditions in the irrigation systems and to control the different requirements for irrigation on different plots. Initially, the test site will be a greenhouse of the Geisenheim University of Applied Sciences. “IotAgrar” was launched at the beginning of May and is initially planned to run until the end of January 2021. The manipulation security in the IOTA network is emphasized. If the tests turn out positive, one could imagine using it in other agricultural applications as well.
Conclusion: IOTA and Agriculture 2.0 – a worthwhile endeavour
In the past, IOTA has already put out its feelers towards agriculture on several occasions, for example with a “farm of the future” in Norway. The example of “IotAgrar” once again shows the potential in this field, where the Internet of Things (IoT) is playing out its strengths. The IOTA Foundation presumably hopes that in future farmers will be able to settle many a bill directly through IOTA, such as here for water consumption. However, this is not yet mentioned in the project outline. IOTA experiences this dilemma in many of its pilot projects, where Tanglenet is desired but the crypto-currency IOTA is not used.
Best place to buy IOTA: