7Sense has developed an irrigation control system that saves water, protects crops and frees up time for farmers. “We’ve discovered that our technology is not only helping farmers be more sustainable, it improves the farmers’ welfare too. Things are tough for farmers. We want to do whatever we can to help them, in all areas,” says Max J. Tangen, CEO of 7Sense.
Agriculture accounts for 70 per cent of freshwater use worldwide. Traditional irrigation systems in agriculture, however, are labour-intensive and require constant manual monitoring. They often consist of hundreds of metres of hoses, pipes and connectors, where many components can – and will – malfunction. Any malfunction could potentially lead to enormous water losses, as well as damage to fields and crops.
“Irrigation systems require a lot of manual operation and observation. Farmers irrigate during the night because of the conditions. This causes trouble for the farmers when it comes to sleeping. It’s a never-ending hassle during the summertime,” explains Tangen.
7Sense has developed a wireless sensor that can be easily retrofitted to almost any type of existing irrigation system.
“One hot summer when we travelled around talking to farmers, the irrigation issue came up time and time again. We started to realise how terribly occupied farmers are with the irrigation process. It became clear to us that they needed a high-tech solution,” explains Tangen.
Using non-intrusive flow detection (international patent pending), the sensor detects any loss of water and alerts the farmer. This means manpower can be moved from monitoring irrigation systems to more productive tasks.
Using satellite navigation, the sensor also provides real-time information about where a sprinkler cart is, at which speed it is moving, and when it is expected to finish watering.
All the information is automatically fed into a farmer’s mobile device, which can easily be set up for different types of alerts.
7Sense reduces loss of water and protects crops from flooding. The sensor gives farmers complete control of the irrigation process and decreases the need for manual monitoring.
The sensor is easy to mount or retrofit to existing systems, meaning equipment can be modernised instead of replaced. It is also extremely simple to operate, as farmers only need to push one large button.
Since agriculture production is global and water is a scarce resource, the market potential for 7sense is worldwide. There is currently no other system on the market which can non-intrusively detect flow.
7Sense was founded in 2012 as a spin-off from an electronics and software company established in 1988. 7Sense also delivers a range of other products for monitoring and sensors, including for food storage, construction projects and offices.
Wireless sensors for monitoring and controlling agricultural irrigation
Reduces loss of water and protects crops from flooding
Frees up farm resources from manual monitoring