Smart Agriculture Demonstration Park of Sweet Melons Empowered by SenseCAP LoRaWAN in Beihai Guangxi, Southern China

Yinhai District of Beihai City in Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, with 18,000 hectares of arable land, has a farming population of 124,000, accounting for 53% of the district’s total habitants. To help local farmers increase efficiency, lower the cost and boost the yield in farming, the local government has been visiting different regions in China and conducting research to find solutions that can help the farming industry in Yinhai District through digital transformation with IoT technology.

After learning about Seeed SenseCAP, the wireless IoT sensors, and gateways for precision agriculture and smart farming, the local government decided to partner with Seeed, and a system integrator based in Beijing) and GAAS (Guangxi Academy of Agricultural Sciences) to build a smart agriculture pilot project within their 200-hectare agricultural demonstration park.

A Glimpse of Agricultural Demonstration Park in Beihai

Through constant communication with local farmers and the government, the pilot run was chosen to be implemented in a greenhouse of sweet melons, with the following elements taken into consideration:

  • Sweet melon is a superstar among local produce, with two harvests per year, and a yield of 2500kg per 0.067ha at the selling price of 10RMB/kg. It has been selected as a brand of China’s “one product per village” program. When the IoT application of smart agriculture practices can help farmers in sweet melon cultivation and management, it will be easily replicated to other sweet melon greenhouses as well as other crops.
  • The current managing method requires farmers to constantly visit the greenhouses in person, and to turn on and off the switches of different systems manually, which is both time-consuming and labor-intensive.
  • When relying on experience and estimation, the management process wastes a lot of water and electricity in the process of cultivation, which may simultaneously lead to low yield due to the inappropriate amount of fertilizer or irrigation.
Sweet Melon in Greenhouse (Photo Credit: Beihai Daily)

To help solve the current problems, the pilot project was implemented with SenseCAP, the industrial wireless agriculture sensors and gateways, including the following LoRaWAN sensors: Soil Temperature, VWC & EC Sensor, Light Intensity Sensor, CO2 Sensor, pH Sensor, PAR Sensor, and LoRaWAN Gateways.

(SenseCAP Sensors Deployed in the Greenhouse)

In 2022, we released SenseCAP S210x Series, our next generation LoRaWAN end nodes, with an objective to cut the device cost for SenseCAP-based solution adopter and to improve the product performance. S210x series still has rugged industrial design and wide measuring range. More importantly, it has easier setup process that is totally friendly to greenhouse keeper without technological background. In addition, we have taken the need of large scale deployment into consideration so that we prolong the battery life to up to 12 year.

The LR IoT solution is equipped to perform the following functions:

  1. SenseCAP collects the parameters of soil moisture and temperature, soil electrical conductivity, light intensity, CO2, soil pH value, and PAR (Photosynthetically active radiation).
  2. The ventilation systems, sunshade curtain system, and the irrigation systems are connected with the data collected by SenseCAP for remote control or auto-control.
  3. Cameras installed indoor to monitor the growth conditions of the plants and outdoor for surveillance purposes.
  4. A smart weather station installed outside the greenhouse for collecting the parameters of air temperature and humidity, barometric pressure, light intensity, CO2, wind direction, and rain volume.
(SenseCAP System Architecture)

Combining the consultation and suggestions from Guangxi Academy of Agricultural Sciences with the data collected by SenseCAP, the farmers can remotely control the ventilation, sunshade curtain, and smart irrigation system through the webpage or Mini-App on WeChat.

(data collected at the smart greenhouse monitoring)

And from the images collected by the cameras, the farmers can see the conditions within and outside the greenhouses conveniently without dispatching workers to check the greenhouse in person. This helps to lower the cost significantly and improve efficiency.

(an image captured by the camera in the smart greenhouse)

For long-term development, the accumulated data can be used by experts at Guangxi Academy of Agricultural Sciences to provide insightful information and consultation to local farmers about which crops and fruits to grow based on the weather conditions in Yinhai District. In this way, they will be able to implement climate-smart agriculture practices and form a beneficial cycle in the long run.

(Smart Weather Station Deployed outside the Greenhouse)

This pilot project has been in full swing in Yinhai District with very positive feedback from local farmers and government officials. It is expected to expand to other greenhouses and outdoor fields of sweet melons, chilies and other produce with high economic benefits.

This project also contributes to the following Sustainable Development Goals.


What is SenseCAP?

SenseCAP is a series of industrial IoT products. Its LoRaWAN version is based on LoRaWAN protocol and deployable worldwide with multiple ISM bands. SenseCAP is encapsulated in an IP66 enclosure, making it applicable in outdoor remote sensing scenarios such as Smart Farming, Smart City, and other IoT applications that need low-power, long-distance, and long-term data collection.

About SenseCAP S210X Series

With the IP66 rating, -40 ~ +85C ° operating temperature and built-in 19Ah high-capacity battery, combined with the devices’ low power consumption, the S210X series can operate in harsh outdoor
environments for up to 10 years with a range of up to 10km. The built-in Bluetooth facilitates setup and greatly reduces large-scale deployment costs. Users can focus on application development with the easy set-up, and start retrieving data in a few steps. Just install the device, bind it using the QR code and configure the network, then data can be viewed from the SenseCAP portal, which supports popular IoT protocols such as HTTP and MQTT.

Here’s the newest video of the SenseCAP S210x Series unboxing and shows how to deploy in your area

Update June 2022SenseCAP S210x Series are currently available for purchase. If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment here, email us ([email protected]), or join the discussion at Discord.

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December 2019