What is irrigation automation?
Irrigation automation refers to the process where an irrigation system can be activated and utilized automatically, that is, without the use of manual labor. This can be done through the implementation of various specially designed technologies that assist this process.
Irrigation automation can be used in various ways like the start and stop of pumps, start and stop of irrigation through control in the supply chain outlets etc. any changes in the irrigation requirements of the crops can be automatically controlled and maintained remotely.
Advantages of irrigation automation:
- Reduction in labor: Since the entire process of irrigation will be automated, there is no need of any manual assistance apart from the time-to-time monitoring if the system is operating as desired.
- Timely irrigation: Automated irrigation systems ensure that the plants receive water and nutrients based on a pre-decided time schedule that will ensure that there is not an extremely large gap in between the irrigation cycles.
- Accurate water supply: In an automated system of irrigation, the water quantity provided to the crops is pre-determined and does not give room for over flooding or drying of roots due to under watering. The right and exact quantity of water is provided to the plants.
- Reduction in water wastage: Automated irrigation systems ensure that the right quantity of water is provided to the crops at the right time. This reduces water wastage due to evaporation and unwanted watering of plants. It is difficult to measure the exact reason for water wastage in a manual irrigation system and this can be overcome with irrigation automation.
- Reduces over head costs: Using an automated system of irrigation ensures that water is available for the crops at all needed times. This reduces transport costs, time value costs of farmers and labor costs which brings down the entire cost of irrigation. Costs that are often over looked in the process of manual irrigation are entirely dismissed with an automated system of irrigation.
- Management of higher flow rates: This refers to a process where water that flows at high speed from one location to another can easily be monitored and maintained, without an external factor that may disturb and disrupt the flow of this water. Any such disturbance can cost drastically to farmers and even damage the crops entirely.
- Increase in irrigation efficiency: An automated irrigation system ensures that the entire area of the field is covered leaving no dry patches. This maximum coverage is very difficult to achieve with manual irrigation unless the water wastage levels are high. Striking the right balance between reduced water consumption and total area coverage can easily be achieved with irrigation automation systems.
- Low maintenance costs: An automated irrigation system is extremely easy to maintain if checked continuously and regularly. It can save farmers a lot of money by regular repairs and professional instillation. The long run cost benefits are massive and can be observed from a very early stage itself.
There are various benefits to an automated irrigation system that not only saves farmers money but also improves the quality of crops and the quantity of yield. Thus, irrigation automation systems are very beneficial and can easily be considered as a win to farmers.