Leti, a research institute of CEA Tech, announced a new European Commission smart-farming project that will deliver real-time data on soil conditions. Deployed via small, private Internet of Things (IoT) networks, the SARMENTI sensor node will provide farmers with a reagent-free sensor platform to monitor real-time soil nutrient concentrations and measure local environmental conditions.
Current soil analyses are neither real-time nor in-situ, while SARMENTI-developed sensors will measure in-situ, high-temporal-resolution soil nutrient concentration information that can be used to improve fertilizer management. This will help reduce nitrogen losses to the environment and to meet the goals of the EU’s Nitrates Directive on preventing nitrates from agricultural sources from polluting ground and surface water.
The SARMENTI IoT node consists of three devices:
1. A soil probe that mainly contains electrochemical sensors, in a hygroscopic membrane to monitor soil nutrient concentration.
2. An air probe located just above the ground, to monitor gases and environmental conditions by the soil probe.
3. A smart data logger to collect data from both probes and transmit them to the cloud, for analytics to provide farmers with advice about optimal fertilization.
CEA-Leti is coordinating the three-year project and will provide expertise in electrochemical sensors. It also will provide the soil probe and cyber-security technology for the IoT. Other SARMENTI project participants include Tyndall-UCC (Ireland), STMicroelectronics (Italy), CSEM (Switzerland), and Atos (Romania). Three consortium members will represent farmers and other end users, Terrasolis (France), Teagasc, the Irish Agriculture and Food Development Authority, and Spiro, a farm in Romania, also will validate the node’s operation.
Learn more at www.leti-cea.com.