Irrigation Technology News

AT&T Connectivity in Smart Irrigation Solution

WaterBit and AT&T* are making automated irrigation easier for growers. WaterBit chose AT&T to provide highly secure connectivity to its autonomous irrigation solution. The smart irrigation solution helps farmers increase yield and conserve resources.

In-field data collection of soil moisture and nutrients gives farmers near real-time insight into crop conditions. Integrating data collection with WaterBit’s cloud-based software lets growers monitor and analyze soil moisture, as well as plan and control irrigation with pinpoint accuracy.

“With WaterBit, precision and science will better inform water delivery and translate into higher yields that can be sustained," said Chandler Bennett, production manager at Madison Farms - WaterBit customer.

“Western Growers is excited about the WaterBit and AT&T relationship. These types of strategic collaborations are necessary to bring IoT to the field level and can help growers drive further precision into their operations,” said Hank Giclas, senior vice president of science and technology at Western Growers. “The WaterBit technology for precision irrigation coupled with AT&T's focus on agriculture is a solid indicator of the future trends in smart agriculture.”

WaterBit is a low cost, low maintenance, easy-to-install solution that allows growers to target irrigation precisely at what WaterBit refers to as “microblocks”- specific terrain locations. The soil monitoring sensors are non-intrusive and are suited for all types of crops – nuts, berries and vineyards. Farmers can set it and forget it. The solution is:
1. Easy to maintain – Solar-powered, low-energy device operates reliably for years and eliminates in-field battery changes.
2. Compact – Fits under the foliage and won’t interfere with field operations and harvests.
3. Data-rich – Cloud-based 24/7 data gets sent directly to your device to power fully-informed irrigation decisions.

WaterBit sends data from multiple field locations to one central network gateway hub. The hub is not disruptive to field operations. It can be installed at an off-field location and spans over a 1.5 mile range.

The gateway uses AT&T Global SIM card and Internet of Things (IoT) Services like Control Center to securely send data to the WaterBit cloud. Data is updated every 15 minutes, around the clock. And users can access it and control irrigation from virtually anywhere via a mobile-friendly app. By optimizing water use, growers can boost crop quality and yield. Not over-watering saves fuel and equipment costs. And it conserves an important natural resource – water.

“We’re making it easier for growers to use technology to improve labor, water and land efficiency,” said Leif Chastaine, WaterBit Chief Operating Officer. “To offer our clients 24/7 monitoring, we need a reliable connection and we have that with AT&T. The AT&T Control Center gives us ease, security, scalability and more.”

Source: http://about.att.com

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