The Internet of Things (IoT) in Agriculture is part of a broader scope of Agriculture Technology (AgriTech) focused on improving awareness and automation of farming, aquaculture, ranching, indoor plant growing, and food production in general.
There are many IoT Technology systems and functions involved in Agriculture. A few of them include as follows:
- Agricultural Device and Sensor Connected Systems: Machinery that helps different types of farming activities. Some examples includes, two-wheel tractor, caterpillar tractor, drones, cultivators, sprayer, farm truck, grain dryer, rice huller, harvesting machine, milking machine, bulk tank, grinder mixer, and many more. Those devices can be controlled by automated software supporting remote operation while equipped with sensing capabilities to generate required information or notification. In that sense, both the terms overlap. However, some examples of sensor-connected systems include irrigation system (sprinkler system, drip irrigation, center pivot irrigation, hydroponics etc.), soil monitoring systems (nutrients monitoring, fertilizer level monitoring, etc.), and crop monitoring systems (spectral sensor to monitor crops growth, parasites detection, etc.). Sensor connected system can sometime be a combination of agricultural device, fixed system installed on field or farming area, and cloud controlled software.
- Smart Detection Systems and Smart Monitoring: Means for detecting crops related information and alerting to the central monitoring system whenever needed. Some examples include leaf temperature, leaf area index, plant water status, insect disease, weed infestation, infection detection, etc. Smart monitoring systems monitor the overall health of field and supply chain management that includes humidity, soil moisture, temperature, theft surveillance, water quality, soil water availability, soil compaction, soil fertility, food tracking system, and others. These two areas are often confusing and sometimes a product or solution varies based on how someone defines it.
- Sensor Based Field & Resource Mapping: Use GPS system to monitor Crop Yield and moisture content in a given field. Ideally it is a full-fledged system combining several components, one example can be Yield mapping system including grain moisture sensor, elevator speed sensor, GPS antenna, yield monitor display with GPS receiver, header position sensor, and travel speed sensor.
IoT in Agriculture: Market Outlook and Forecasts 2017 – 2022 assesses the technologies, companies, and solutions for IoT in agriculture. The report evaluates the overall marketplace and provides forecasts for sensors (and other devices), services, solutions, and data analytics globally, and regionally for the period 2017 to 2022.
Forecasts include precision agriculture, indoor farming, livestock, and fisheries.