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ENTOMATIC Report Summary

Project reference: 605073
Funded under: FP7-SME

Periodic Report Summary 1 - ENTOMATIC (Novel automatic and stand-alone integrated pest management tool for remote count and bioacoustic identification of the Olive Fly (Bactrocera oleae) in the field)

Project Context and Objectives:
ENTOMATIC addresses a major problem faced by EU Associations of Olive growing SMEs: the Olive fruit fly (Bactrocera oleae). This insect pest causes yearly economical losses estimated to be almost €600/ha. ENTOMATIC aims to develop a novel stand-alone field monitoring system comprising: a fully autonomous trap with integrated insect bioacoustic recognition embedded in a wireless sensor network and supported by a spatial decision support system.
The consortium is composed of SME-AGs, INOLEO AJAP and AEGEAN, of Olive Producers from the EU and Turkey, and lead-user SMEs, PHYTO, MTSYS and BIOSYS, expert in Pest Management solutions. These will lead the specification, validation, protection, and use of the results generated by the selected RTD providers, UPF, TEIC, IMMS and Avia-GIS, expert in Entomology, Decision Support Systems, Bioacoustics, Electronics, Signal Processing, IT solutions, Wireless Communications and Prototyping.
Olive cultivation is widespread throughout the Mediterranean and is vital for the rural economy, local heritage and environment. The area under olive groves in the EU is approximately 4.376.000 hectares, 4 % of the agricultural area. Approximately 2.5 million producers (one third of EU farmers) are involved. Olive production is the main source of employment and economic activity in many regions, and the sector is basically dominated by SMEs united in associations. The average holding size is as low as 1 ha in Italy, though olive holdings in Spain are larger (6 ha on average) and the annual net income per hectare can reach €1.8974.
However this sector is continuously under the threat of an extremely destructive insect pest: Bactrocera oleae, the Olive fruit fly. Each year it accounts for more than 30% destruction of all Mediterranean olive crops, i.e. losses of almost €3.0 billion.
The ENTOMATIC system aims to offer EU Olive SME-AGs an advanced IPM system for Bactrocera oleae, based on an innovative trap capable of automatically counting each insect trapped, identifying the species based on bioacoustic analysis and send the data wirelessly. The proposed system will also be able to function autonomously during the whole fruiting season, have an operative life-time of at least 5 years and be adapted to handle other fruit flies.
The ability to quantify and make a precise control of Olive fly populations in a cost-effective way has been a long desired goal in the Olive sector. The potential offered by ENTOMATIC has SME-AGs and their associated SMEs keen on its development. The expected benefits are the reduction of damage to olive fruit and oil production and to promote the sustainable use of pesticides. Studies in Greece and Spain using extended monitoring programmes with a combination of different state-of-the art traps, more frequent inspections of traps, extensive manual count and species identification of captured insects, and manual processing of collected data shared between regional and national authorities, demonstrated that the fruit losses provoked by the Olive fruit fly could be reduced in more than 50%, with a 60% reduction of insecticides and a 60% increase of extra virgin oil. Via ENTOMATIC, olive producers will be able to track pest population and geographical status and receive advice on precision pesticide application.
Our aim is to develop an easily accessible system, which enables automatic and cost-effective IPM for Bactrocera oleae for all end users. In addition, the proposed system can be a powerful tool in the hands of regional/national authorities to enforce legislative requirements, which need data collection on a regular basis to achieve a sustainable use of pesticides. The ENTOMATIC system will enable the Olive SME- AGs and their members to improve their production, reduce the amount of pesticides used and reduce the labour cost associated with spraying activities and inspection of traps.
Based on published studies, the experience of the consortium SME-AGs and SMEs and interviews with several producers, the participants expect a reduction of the Olive fruit fly damage, a reduction of spraying costs and an increase of productivity, using ENTOMATIC.

Project Results:
Following the defined work plan, the majority of the efforts during this first year have been focused on the research of technological development and innovation-related activities.
The first work package has become our first priority during the beginning of the project. It has been very important to obtain a more detailed understanding of the market needs previously identified by the consortium. Thanks to the SMEs, the SME-AGs and the questionnaires distributed among olive fruit producers we have obtained a more accurate vision from the sector to design a tailor-made prototype.
Moreover, a study of the behaviour and characteristic sound emissions of the Olive fruit fly has been also done at WP2. Results of the different tests reflect the good performance of the optoelectronic sensor developed. The optoelectronic sensor developed can accurately analyze any insect’s wing flapping. Note that most insects beat their wings with frequencies <1 kHz. Clearly, the operating frequency of photodiodes that responded perfectly at 60 kHz is far higher than any biological organism can reach with its wings. Therefore, we conclude that optoelectronic devices cannot fail to respond in tracking the wing-beat of any insect. The constructed sensor is indifferent to illumination variations and operates from bright light to total darkness. It is robust against electronic interference because it modulates emitted light to high frequencies and therefore is immune to interference from devices typically encountered in laboratories; therefore it can be useful for in-lab research and in the field.
Another important task done is the design of the ENTOMATIC trap. Current research is made with the McPhail trap because it is the most widespread in southern Europe, there exist plenty of previous research and fits with the main guidelines of farmers. The ENTOMATIC trap has been designed by using many CAD design iterations so that the electronics do not disturb the internal space. The designer of the trap was instructed to make a product that does not alter the original shape, as we know that the McPhail trap is effective and accepted by B. oleae. Video recordings, which were made at various traps, show that a not insignificant number of flies walked into the trap and did not fly. For ensuring the correct counting of the flies by optoelectronic sensors, it must be ensured that all flies fly into the trap and do not walk. Therefore, various variants to change the funnel were discussed. These included both geometric and material changes.
In WP4, the evaluation of network and communication requirements of the ENTOMATIC system has been completed. It includes the definition of the Wireless Sensor Network architecture, from the physical layer (where it has been chosen the frequency band of 868 MHz and low-power transceivers) to the transport layer, also including novel MAC and network layer mechanisms aimed to reduce the global power consumption of the network. For instance, an intelligent and energy-aware routing MAC protocol has been proposed. Moreover, the communication devices of the system have been classified into gateways and nodes, and a logical design for each one has been proposed. Lastly, the search of the most appropriate HW and SW technologies has been concluded by choosing the Zolertia Re-Mote platform and the Contiki embedded Operating System. It is worth noting that we have also started to develop different network performance tests in the emulation tool of Contiki (called COOJA) and with a new software simulator called GOAT, which has been especially designed for the ENTOMATIC project.
In WP5 we have collected expert knowledge on Olive fly behaviour, pest management and control criteria, with the collaboration of olive fruit producers. Results of the questionnaires reveal that both monitoring and control activities are differently organized in different countries in Mediterranean area. The application of the current used systems in many cases suffers from inadequate geospatial and temporal information. The used techniques led to the identification and the definition of the relevant criteria that should be considered in the decision-making procedure. Moreover, the development of decision-tree approach, that makes thus possible to determine the best alternatives without resolving the uncertainty, has begun. Integrating the decision tree into a GIS environment will allow a rapid visualisation of the decision and the area to be treated and will permit the decision makers and operational staff to plan and execute the needed operations in a more efficient manner.
We have also started the work of WP6. The design of the IPM software and its functionalities for Monitoring, Warning and Control of Olive fruit flies for unlimited number of traps and gateways including the development of a GIS database has been defined. One of the main results is the design and creation of a data web portal, where information of different real sensors (temperature, humidity) has been uploaded through a WiFi connection and linked to a SQL-based database. Data can be thus easily browsed by checking different plots or through a Google Maps API modification. This web portal will allocate the Cloud architecture for the implementation of the Monitoring & Management Central (See User: admin Password: admin).

Finally, we want to dedicate a special mention to all the activities developed under the WP10 and WP11. All the dissemination done by the entire consortium could be found in the project web page ( Moreover, we are taking into account, as a very important premise, the market requirements in order to achieve a successful exploitation of the project results.

Potential Impact:
The ENTOMATIC system will be developed an advanced IPM system for Bactrocera oleae, based on an innovative trap capable of automatically counting each insect trapped, identifying the species based on bioacoustic analysis and send the data wirelessly.
These system is mainly compose of: a more effective trap design for olive flies, using multiple bait/luring combinations to simultaneously attract males (using pheromones) and females (using liquid protein bait); an automatic count of flies entering the trap with an automatic detection of species through bioacoustic analysis that will overcome the problem of non-target insects entering the trap which producers have to distinguish during manual insect counts; a low-power wireless transmission of field data for daily follow-up of pest activity and pesticide application effect on olive fly population with the possibility of on-line monitoring of traps via SMS, Internet, GIS maps, etc. and possibility of viewing results via mobile phone, tablet PC, PC, etc. , and, a database related to olive fly population, field and owner information, etc. and a Spatial Decision Support System (SDSS) specific for the Olive fly, capable of issuing automated warnings for on-time and precise pesticide application, supported by advanced algorithms, and historical records of insect population, pesticide usage and spraying activities.
ENTOMATIC have to consider different potential impacts depending on the beneficiary of the expected impact.
Impact for the participating SME associations and their members: the SME-AG and SME participants of ENTOMATIC will enjoy the unique advantage of being ahead of competitors, since no similar solution currently exists. ENTOMATIC has clear impacts in terms of economic growth, contribution to employment, implementation of novel market strategies, creation of new distribution channels, etc. Also, it will enable the participants to expand their markets through transnational technological cooperation. In the EU more than €5billion is spent every year in pesticides (30% of pesticide sold worldwide) while 100’s of million Euros of counterfeit pesticides are imported across Europe. Despite tighter regulatory controls compared to other parts of the world, pesticides consumption in Europe is increasing. ENTOMATIC will increase the farmers' yearly income by 1) reporting insect activity daily preventing fruit damage with 2) timely and sustainable interventions using precise amounts of pesticides, leading to 3) a better and cost-effective control of insects and an increased opportunity to produce more extra virgin olive oil. The expected increase of income is by 505€/ha.
Impact on Standards and Policies: EU regulations for the Olive sector introduced in 2004, and later years are designed to improve oil quality, decrease environmental impacts and implementation of more effective monitoring methodologies. ENTOMATIC is an advanced solution to help SMEs comply with such regulations, and contains elements that could advance existing regulations. The EU Olive standards of Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) can also benefit from ENTOMATIC.
Community and Social Impacts: ENTOMATIC will aid supporting a traditional EU activity that shapes regional communities. The European Olive Associations and their SME members have been severely hit by job and revenue losses for the past six years. ENTOMATIC will help preserving and promoting employment. The technology can help to preserve and expand Olive growers businesses, thereby supporting employment in EU rural areas, which face particular challenges related to growth, jobs, lower income and technological gaps. ENTOMATIC will contribute to environmental protection and sustainable production. ENTOMATIC will reduce the environmental impact of pesticides, complying with CAP standards and PPP regulations. ENTOMATIC will promote health and safety to consumers and EU citizens in general will benefit from reduced need to use pesticides. The proposed ENTOMATIC technology will also reduce the exposure of workers to extreme conditions while collecting data in standard traps. ENTOMATIC will support rural development that represent more than 90% of EU territory and containing more than half of the EU population. ENTOMATIC will enhance knowledge, quality of work and producers satisfaction, providing them with new knowledge and technology that will benefit them by improving the management of their olive orchards.

List of Websites:


Martin, Eva (Head of the Research Services)
Tel.: +34 93 542 2140
Fax: +34 93 542 1440
Record Number: 183772 / Last updated on: 2016-06-14
Information source: SESAM