Colombia

Reducing Water Waste in Automatic Irrigation Systems

Colombia

Issue

  • 20% of Colombians live in rural areas in poverty and most depend on agriculture for their livelihoods
  • Agriculture is a critical part of Colombia’s GDP, growing 2% in the first trimester of 2018
  • 70% of the hydraulic resource in the world is used for agriculture

Approach

  • Enable low cost communication without excessive use of energy by using the Zigbee protocol to communicate and control sensors and actuators.
  • Determine when to irrigate by using gradient boosted trees and random forests with significant data points.
  • Optimize use of hydric resource with drip irrigation systems.
  • Use mqtt for sensor networks protocol (MQTT-SN) to efficiently communicate via Zigbee.

Results

  • Four participating students
  • Creating a research team focused on the Internet of Things and machine learning
  • Designed and implemented an open source automatic drip irrigation system

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