KWS: Digitalization reaches agricultural fields
Talking about agricultural work can lead us to concepts such as tradition, manual production, analog, etc. However, like all sectors, agriculture is changing and is joining the digital transformation to optimize its processes and achieve better harvest results.
KWS is one of the world’s leading seed suppliers and offers innovative solutions to farmers in 70 countries. One of their main lines of business is the extraction of sugar from sugar beet, but the manual process is slow, tedious, and more costly. To address this, they developed Beetrometer, an innovative system that automatically analyses the quality of harvested beets efficiently by pre-preparing and then analyzing the samples using a spectrometer.
Therefore, the first challenge we faced was to achieve bi-directional connectivity to send different types of quality-related data obtained by Beetrometer to the cloud for further analysis and to receive parameter and configuration files from the cloud.
On the other hand, this data had to be exploited to extract metrics and obtain graphs that show them more visually and clearly.
From here, a data infrastructure has been created in Azure, which consumes data from the devices via IoT Hub and with Azure Functions. In addition, a web application has been developed from which user access, metrics, reports, graphs, averages, etc. can be managed.
In addition, it has the intelligence to generate new information when there are new developments in the same file thanks to the continuous checking of the data, which also allows the detection of anomalies and the statistical reaction to different pre-configured alarms.
This project has already been implemented in the US. Still, it is intended to scale to the rest of the world, leverage cloud-based platforms to avoid duplication of resources, one-off projects, and technical debt, and embrace the use of IoT to connect other devices as needed.
One million data points are currently being monitored, and the volume of data in storage is already almost 100 GiB. Still, these numbers will multiply exponentially as more devices and locations are added.