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Sigrow introduces affordable wireless sensor systems:

More sensors make more sense

As structures and operations get larger, greenhouse production has also become more susceptible to local environmental fluctuations in the greenhouse. With a better quality and production in mind, every grower wants to have a precise image of what is happening inside his greenhouse. For this reason, Sigrow is introducing affordable wireless sensor technology.

Growers appreciate the ability to have a better overview of their crop and climate. Sensors can provide them with information and insight into the differences in climate throughout the operation. The drawback of many sensor systems is that they are often too expensive to use them at full advantage. 

"In order to get a more complete overview, you need to place more than just one or two sensors. Current systems on the market are too expensive to make this approach affordable", explained Tim Tilleman of Sigrow.

Sigrow is a start-up company developed by plant science students from Wageningen University. They realized there was a demand for a more affordable sensor system and started to develop a modular solution that could provide a good overall, yet still detailed image of the greenhouse climate and conditions. 

Depending on the configuration, the Sigrow sensors are listed for a starting price between 200 and 300 euro. "They can measure basic parameters like temperature, humidity and light levels, but they can also perform more detailed analysis of the substrate by measuring EC, PH and temperature or even provide an update on the CO2 levels in the greenhouse. Depending on the crop, we offer an affordable solution for almost any situation."

As the sensors can be introduced at a low cost, it becomes more attractive to install a larger number of them. "In order to get an optimal overview of the connection between production and climate, sensors need to be installed widely spread, starting with at least one sensor in each corner and one in the middle. This will give the grower a better overview of his climate and provides him with the opportunity to steer the cultivation more precisely." 

The battery-powered wireless Sigrow sensors connect through radiofrequency with a centrumnode that collects the data of the numerous sensors that can be placed inside the greenhouse. This data is accessible via an online interface that gives the grower the opportunity to visualize and analyse the differences throughout his operation. 

The first Dutch growers have started commercial trials with the system. "It has proven to be an affordable investment for many growers. While still used at a modest scale, we are looking to increase our presence on the market in crops like fruits and vegetables, but also in more high-value crops like cut flowers which are often more susceptible to changes in climate and nutrition." 

For more information:
Tom Tilleman
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