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Farmex to research wireless pig environment controls and monitors

by 5m Editor
17 September 2007, at 10:35am

UK - Farmex has been awarded a grant for a 3100,000, two-year project to look into ways of producing a “robust and reliable“ wireless method of operating its control and monitoring systems in piggeries. If successful, it is likely to be a world first.

Granted under the Knowledge Transfer Partnership in association with Buckinghamshire Chilterns University College in High Wycombe, the project also aims to come up with novel ways of adding value to data retrieval thus encouraging farmers to take commercial advantage of production information to manage their businesses more efficiently.

“There has been much talk of wireless operation for agriculture but it is far from straight-forward in intensive livestock applications,” said Farmex managing director Hugh Crabtree. “There are many reflective surfaces and opaque barriers to contend with. In addition, large vehicle movements further compound the problems of reliable transmission.”

He points out that with the increasing use of networked control, alarm and monitoring systems in livestock production, costs have risen. In many cases the expense of installation can exceed the cost of the hardware. A wireless system could reduce the overall installed cost by 25-30 percent.

To run the project Farmex wants to recruit a technically-minded recent graduate with an upper 2nd degree — probably in electronics or computer science.

5m Editor