Purdue & NSF Partnering on Precision Farming Initiatives
September 1st, 2020
Automation already plays a large role in agriculture. Equipped with GPS and near-field sensors, self-driving vehicles of all stripes (once a frequent source of ridicule) are starting to roll across US farmlands. Dramatic as these developments are, there’s a quiet IoT revolution afoot to better understand the many factors and inputs which affect crop health, yield, and quality. Coined ‘precision farming’, IoT sensors and cloud applications analyze moisture, temperature, and other metrics to shed light on what is going both above and below the soil level. Recently, Purdue University said that it will be partnering with the National Science Foundation Engineering (NSF) at a new Research Center tasked with developing Precision Agriculture (IoT4Ag) technologies to address food, energy and water security challenges. The initiative integrates real time metrics collected by swarms of sensors, mesh networks, and ground/aerial robots with data from weather reports and commodity markets, synthesizing it into actionable information to improve productivity while minimizing water usage, waste, and ecological impact.