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Solar-powered Soil Diagnosis System Tested for Agriculture

2016/10/17 13:16
Kenji Kaneko, Nikkei BP CleanTech Institute
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The "Poggimo" wireless LAN access point (source: Iwasaki)
The "EDYN" soil sensor (source: Iwasaki)

Innotech Corp (Yokohama City), Nextech Co Ltd (Sapporo City) and Iwasaki Co Ltd (Sapporo City) announced Oct 12, 2016, that they have established a soil diagnosis system by combining a solar-powered wireless LAN unit and solar-powered soil sensors and started a verification test.

On Tobetsu Field, which Iwasaki owns in Hokkaido, Nextech's "Poggimo" wireless LAN access point and the "EDYN" soil sensor, which Innotech sells in Japan, were installed. They are equipped with solar cells, enabling to easily collect soil data without using external power sources, the companies said.

Iwasaki has been engaged in precision farming using ICTs (information and communication technologies). Thus far, it has introduced a GNSS (global navigation satellite system) for an autonomous tractor, an automatic fertilizing system using sensors and a system to check growth state by using a UAV (unmanned aerial vehicle).

Nextech developed the Poggimo self-powered wireless LAN access point, which can also be used as a relay station, and sells it. It proposes ICT-based agriculture that uses a wireless LAN system covering an entire farm field.

Innotech started to sell the EDYN soil sensor, which is powered by sunlight and a storage battery, to Japan-based companies, proposing methods to improve productivity through soil management.