AGTECH companies Goanna Ag and Myriota have partnered to develop a remote monitoring, low-cost farm sensor solution for farmers. The solution will tackle one of Australian agriculture’s biggest challenges: the management and optimisation of on-farm water use.
Combining Goanna Ag’s deep experience in farm sensors with Myriota’s direct-to-orbit satellite network for the Internet of Things (IoT), the partnership will unlock the power of remote monitoring for farmers and graziers at a price and scale not seen before.
Making the most of every drop of precious water is a challenge that Australian farmers have been dealing with for decades. This has been compounded by the impact of one of the worst droughts in living memory; with water management being brought into stark view across the farming community this year.
Monitoring rainfall and water storage is a critical requirement to better understand and manage what is going on across the farm. Traditionally, this monitoring has required regular trips to check rain gauges and water tank levels; a necessary evil rather than an efficient and sustainable solution.
In the past decade, remote monitoring has emerged as a far more efficient approach, but the relatively high cost of hardware and communications, complexity of data, less than robust sensors and a lack of field support has prevented widespread adoption.
Commercial release of tank monitoring devices, remote rain gauges
Partnering with Myriota to develop an ‘everywhere’ monitoring solution for Australian agriculture, GoannaAg has deployed a small number of rain gauges and water tank monitoring devices as part of a trial on Australian farms. Now, the tried and tested solution is on the verge of commercial release with pricing and distribution currently being finalised.
The gauges’ data management and app access provide a more affordable solution than other alternatives, with units set to include three years of connectivity, data management and app access as standard.
Future iterations of the rain gauge products will see Goanna Ag integrate smart functionality, including point-specific weather forecasting generated by the Bureau of Meteorology, aggregated and granular rainfall mapping, and an initial on-the-go yield forecaster for dryland cropping.
Goanna Ag chief operating officer Tom Dowling said the suite of products had been in development for some time.
“Our clients know the value that comes from remote monitoring, but until now, the industry has been restricted by coverage and cost issues,” he said. “We have been working toward a solution like this for over a decade, and thanks to our partnership with Myriota, have developed a game-changing solution that will drive on farm efficiencies – particularly around water management and optimisation.”
Myriota’s business development executive Tom Rayner said the partnership was already achieving strong results for farmers.
“We are able to provide an ‘everywhere’ communication solution that is ideally suited to agriculture,” Mr Rayner said. “With ground-based communications requiring capital and geographical prioritisation, there will be ‘black spots’ where data is lost – but through this collaboration with Goanna Ag, we have been able to overcome these challenges of cost and connectivity.”
Both Myriota and Goanna Ag are in the process of expanding their respective capabilities to deliver more sensors and satellites to solve problems facing the industry where real-time insights are critical. Goanna Ag is now taking pre-orders for its rain gauge and tank monitoring solutions, with commercial sales set for October this year.
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