Experiences on the SWAMP Cartagena pilot during spring 2020

The SWAMP Cartagena pilot is a baby-leaf spinach field farmed by Intercrop Iberica. The pilot plan for the spring crops was to continue data collection of soil moisture, the data collection of weather data using local Libelium weather station, the drone-based imaging and crop analysis, and to test our IoT-driven irrigation system. In the irrigation system, the pump and valves are implemented as IoT nodes that are controlled directly by virtual entity models in FIWARE-based SWAMP platform. The data model, also implemented as virtual entities in FIWARE describes the structure of the system.

The COVID-19 and the lockdown in Spain and in rest of Europe caused major problems. Even though the access to the farm was allowed only to the farm employees, the farmer managed to install the monitoring system and to collect the soil moisture and weather data. A short break occurred, when heavy wind collapsed the solar panel system, but replacement was found and installed be the farmer. With the irrigation system, this was supposed to be the first on-site testing opportunity with first time on-site installation of the system. Without the presence of trained staff, it was impossible to do it. Drone flights had to be cancelled as flight permission procedures seem to take a lot of time. It would not have been possible to fly at the field anyway due to the lockdown.

Despite these problems, we managed to collect data from two growth periods. While waiting for the final piloting opportunity in Cartagena, the plan is to test data collection and irrigation units in Finland. We are also extending the SWAMP platform so that the season and alternative irrigation scenarios could be simulated with real Cartagena soil model and weather data.


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