Low cost sensors for agriculture
A former NASA scientist Parag Narvekar has created sensors to enhance farm produce for farmers in Nashik, Maharashtra. He claims that new sensors will assist farmers to understand the weather and adjust their use of irrigation and fertilisers. According to Narvekar, the new sensors are more cost-effective than the already existing ones and have made sensors of Rs 10,000 that earlier use to cost Rs 1.5 lakh.
A resident of Nashik, Narvekar’s owns a company Sensartics that makes weather sensors and offers cost-effective solutions to farmers. The company has also collaborated in the past with more organizations to provide solutions to local farmers’ problems.
In February this year, Sensartics collaborated with Sahyadri Farmers Producers Company (FPC) to establish sensors in Nashik’s grape farms to safeguard the farmers from losing their harvest because of odd weather. The team installs sensors at the root zone levels of the plants.
These sensors calculated temperature, soil moisture and soil electrical conductivity. Sensors placed in the canopies measured humidity and leaf wetness other than temperature.
Narvekar, with his team at Sensartics, has also established village level local weather stations that can provide precise weather forecasts beneficial for the local farmers, the efforts of Narvekar and his company have brought state-of-the-art meteorological stations within the reach of farmers.