Agriculture

Februari 2021

HOW EXERGEN'S NON CONTACT INFRARED TEMPERATURE SENSORS HELP TO ENSURE ACCURATE RESULTS IN THE AGRICULTURE MARKET

Connected agriculture can be defined as the implementation of advanced technologies to improve, manage, and control farming activities, which results in increased production and quality of agricultural products. Advancements in digital technologies have made it possible to collect and leverage a huge amount of data at minimal costs which will make help in making farming operating more insight-driven, and potentially more productive and efficient. Connected agriculture aims at providing real-time data about soil conditions, moisture levels, and weather conditions to plan for harvesting effectively and also help farmers, agribusinesses and fertilizer companies.

An important aspect within weather is of course…..temperature and to be very specific, measuring the temperature of the leaf. This is the guarantee for the plant to carry out the life activities and closely related to plants’ healthy growth and crops’ planting management.

Leaf temperature is the surface temperature of the plant leaf, which affects the photosynthesis and transpiration of plants, and it is used to express the temperature of plant and analyze the physiological activities of plants. The degree of plants’ drought or water can be indicated, and the growth rate and output of the crops can be affected by leaf temperature. There are a lot of methods for leaf temperature measurement such asthermal resistance temperature measurement, thermocouple temperature measurement and infrared temperature measurement. Because of high accuracy, high sensitivity and a variety of field of view, infrared sensors are very suitable for the measurement of plant leaf temperature.

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REPEATABILITY IN MEASUREMENT - WHY IS IT IMPORTANT?

When speaking of measurements, accuracy is the topic that is most often discussed. But in fact, there is something equally important that is often overlooked – repeatability, otherwise known as precision. When measuring in industrial conditions, a service company can take alignment measurements with less than perfect instruments and achieve a specification of accuracy. Yet, unless the measurements can be repeated, you are actually not precise at all.

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There are many factors that come into play that affect the ability to repeat measurements including poor instrument quality, inexperience, instruments out of calibration etc. The latter one is of utmost importance as it guarantees the capability of an instrument measuring to the specifications for which it is rated. Many instruments lose their calibration, and hence their accuracy, over time, therefore it is necessary to recalibrate them on a regular basis.

Why is repeatability so important?  In order to refine a process that is dependent on alignment, whether it be a machining process, an assembly process, printing process, measuring the temperature of a leaf in the agriculture sector for a better crop output, the product’s quality will be affected by variances. Variances and irregularity defects are generally not desirable. If misalignment or dimensional errors cannot be removed because different readings or conditions are detected every time measurements are inspected, quality cannot be improved. One could argue that it is better to be precise, or repeatable, rather than accurate.

How great it is to underline that our sensor line has BOTH.

View the Tech Note on this topic

EXERGEN’S NON CONTACT INFRARED TEMPERATURE SENSORS HELP ENSURE ACCURATE RESULTS IN HORTICULTURAL RESEARCH

Exergen Global today announced that its micro IRt/c temperature sensors are being employed by Netherlands-based Plant Lighting B.V. in its research aimed at reducing the artificial energy required to cultivate Phalaenopsis orchids in greenhouses. Orchid production, a $600 million industry in the Netherlands, requires a significant amount of energy for artificial light, heating and cooling. Through its research, Plant Lighting hopes to find new ways to reduce energy needs while increasing plant output.

Plant Lighting had previously used thermocouples in its research, but reported that the leaves’ diurnal (‘daily’) movements prevented the sensors from maintaining the constant contact required for accurate leaf temperature measurement. Moreover, the many small pores (‘stomata’) used by leaves for transpiration and CO2uptake, may differ in opening from one position on the leaf to the other. These differences can cause small local variations in leaf temperature, and therefore can require many thermocouples to accurately measure the leaves’ surface. Exergen’s non-contact micro IRt/c proved to be better suited for the research because they are able to measure a larger area of the leaf and provide the accuracy and reliability required for the research.

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EXERGEN EXPANDS ITS AUTOSMART IRT/C PRODUCT LINE WITH THE AGRI VERSION FOCUSED ON SMARTLY ENHANCING ACCURATE RESULTS IN HORTICULTURAL MARKET

Exergen Global today announced the AGRI edition as its latest addition to its extensive AutoSmart IRt/c family line which already consisted of 11 AutoSmart IRt/c sensors. The AutoSmart Transmitter is the first transmitter in the world capable of fully calibrating Exergen IRt/c sensors to provide unprecedented accuracy of 0.1 °F or 0.1 °C by custom calibration over a very specific range providing two unique advantages:

1. an accuracy that is 10 times better than standards on infrared sensors with the same output, 2. a repeatability error of ± 0.01°C.

Over the years more and more sensors are employed in greenhouses to measure a large variety of parameters, allowing professionals to closely monitor crop or flower condition thereby increasing yield and quality. Temperature is a key parameter as it drives plant development. Greenhouse climates are controlled by air temperature. Plant or leaf temperature is of added value as it is a direct measurement of the developmental rate of the plant itself instead of the indirect measure of air temperature. Due to radiation and/or transpiration plant temperature can significantly deviate from the air temperature. The combination of air and leaf temperature improves insight in the plant water status: i.e., transpiration and thus the amount of water plants require. Plant temperature is also used to prevent heat stress.

Read the complete Press Release