“Right now, we are looking at the beginning of the next wave of agricultural innovations that will transform how growers use and interact with their center pivots. This is made possible through key technological advancements, including edge computing.”
Marcuzzo explains what edge computing does for a farmer.
“Edge computing brings computational power, data processing and data storage closer to the location where the data is actually being collected. It reduces costs and increases the speed and transfer of the data.”
Specific to irrigation practices, Marcuzzo offers examples as to how edge computing will help growers.
“Edge computing will help growers collect a massive amount of data from sensors and smart devices in a place they haven’t been able to before: the center pivot. We’re calling it the smart pivot. The technology will help predict component failures and even monitor crop health. All this info will be accessed within our FieldNET remote management platform. So, instead of dealing with a flat tire after the fact, the pivot will be able to monitor the warning signs, send an alert before the machine shuts down and then automatically move itself to the pivot road for easier maintenance access. The pivot could also link to a dealer to notify technicians that service is needed.”
The technology is designed to utilize data to make farmers more efficient.
“Collecting more data in and of itself isn’t an advantage. Rather, it’s what the data tells us and allows us to do: improve efficiency, reduce risk and boost productivity. So, edge computing capabilities also make it possible to employ artificial intelligence and machine learning, and these are important tools to help growers maximize productivity.”
For a company best known for its irrigation systems, she says jumping into the world of edge computing has a few basic requirements.
“With a lot of customer input, investments in key technologies and collaboration with strategic partners, including Microsoft because of its expertise in machine learning and edge-of-field computing.”
For more information about how Lindsay is incorporating this and other advancements into its Zimmatic and FieldNET equipment and technology, visit lindsay.com/smartpivot.