CORDIS - Forschungsergebnisse der EU

Efficient and connected rain-gun sprinkler irrigator

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - ELEKTRORAIN (Efficient and connected rain-gun sprinkler irrigator)

Berichtszeitraum: 2019-12-01 bis 2020-03-31

Despite sprinkler automated irrigation has made significant breakthroughs at the time, irrigation still face several and important challenges as: 1) Field’s obstacles as electricity pylons, buildings, rocks etc. 2) Irregular field shapes 3) Field corners/borders, making the farmer use fixed sprinklers to irrigate this area, 4) Wrong irrigation speed. All together provoke a big water loss of more than the 25% of the fresh water needed (depending on the crop and field size), an increase of the irrigation time of the 30%, (depending on the flow and speed) and as a consequence, the increase of the carbon foot print that this extra time provokes, as the motor pumps are powered by the fuel. This can be translated into thousand litres of freshwater lost and hours from farmer/operator time, as a continuous sprinkler supervision is needed.
We introduce ELEKTRORAIN: a unique travelling rain-gun irrigation system avoiding a water loss of the 25%, and a reduction of the time needed of the 30%. ELEKTRORAIN is provided with a programmable and attached control mechanism able to provide a more uniform irrigation changing the speed and angle overcoming water loss in borders/corners and avoiding obstacles and different field shapes/sizes without manually adjusting the gun.
Being granted with phase 1 SME proposal enabled us to deepen into technical, and commercial subjects that have supported our decision making described in this document. In particular:
• We have deployed a comprehensive work plan detailing not only the activities but the resources needed to implement it as well as the outsourced activities that we will need to subcontract.
• We have deepen into the end-user´s profile, that will trigger the demand for incorporating our ELETRORAIN raingun into the current Microirrgation Systems (regions, water needs, type of crops and farm sizes suitable for eletrorain).
• We have updated and scouted potential new key stakeholders of our value chain (suppliers, distributors and final customers).
• We have drafted a comprehensive dissmeinaiton plan to raise awareness of our novelty (trade shows attendance, communication activities etc).
• We have drafted realistic projected finance figures, and cost structure of ELEKTRORAIN production once the process has been fully standardised, and secured this way the feasibility of a profitable activity.
• We have identified market trends, and barriers that could rise for which we have drafted contingency measures to be triggered if needed to avoid or minimise the negative influence that could have.
Commencing by stating the conclusion, we can safely claim that based on our broad market knowledge and patented-related research we are first movers on the proposed solution based on three main principles:
• Unprecedented automation decision level: The implementation of all the features into a single marketable solution enables the system with unparalleled capability to self-configure for optimal water usage based on field geometry, weather forecast and conditions, and hydric stress input data).
• Ad-hoc for Micro Irrigation Systems (MIS): A dedicated solution developed ad-hoc for medium-to-small farm holdings while the majority of innovative driven irrigation designs are intended to be used for large crop field surfaces.
• Rain Gun as the brain of the MIS: The uniqueness of redesigning MIS in such a way that the Rain Gun becomes the controller/ decision maker of the whole irrigation system determining the actions that valves, pumps and hose are to be executed.