Section 67
Chapter 66,279

In-Situ Performance and Usability of a Distributed, Wireless Sensor Network via Mesh Connectivity at a Production Container Nursery

Bailey, D. R.; Owen, J. S.; Wagner, J.; Selker, J. S.

Applied Engineering in Agriculture 29(5): 779-782


ISSN/ISBN: 0883-8542
Accession: 066278232

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Many nurseries are considering soil moisture sensor networks to improve water application efficiency. Due to the necessarily wide distribution of sensors at a nursery, a wireless network is easier to install, more flexible, and can be scaled up as needed without re-design as compared to a traditional wired sensor network When choosing a wireless network, a matter of critical importance is the network reliability. This study examined the reliability and usability of a commercially available, mesh-style wireless network used at a container nursery. We found that the network failed to record approximately 20% of scheduled sensor readings and that usability was limited due to a fixed 15-min reading interval. However, the system function was sufficient for calculating irrigation set-time and monitoring net irrigation and evapotranspiration when overhead irrigating containerized nursery crops. Results led to discussion of optimum characteristics of a wireless monitoring network system and to what extent this system embodied each of them.

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