camalie networks Wireless Agricultural Monitoring and Control
On 4/21/13 Camalie Networks introduced the eKoTran software upgrade to the eKo Pro system. With this upgrade the eKo Pro system can deliver its data to web clients without the need for a static IP address or firewall/router configuration changes. It also provides a new user interface which does not require an Adobe Flash add on to the client's browser thus enabling growers to view eKo Pro data on their iPhones. This is accomplished by routing the data to a high performance Camalie Networks Server which hosts the new user interface and a copy of your data. The cost of this new eKo Pro Web Service is $12.95/month. It includes storage and backup of a copy of your data at Camalie Networks and software upgrades and fixes managed at Camalie Networks.
This new web service and software upgrade are an early release of portions of the CS3 technology currently under development at Camalie Networks. To see a preview of CS3 in action join us at the Napa Valley Grape Growers'/UC-Davis Oakville Station Field Day on Friday May 3, 2013, 7:00am-12:00pm. 1380 Oakville Grade Rd.
On 11/1/12 Camalie Networks deployed the first nodes of its newest wireless network system called Camalie Networks System 3 (CS3). It is targeted to provide sensor data acquisition at a break through price point of $250 per location. This radically lower cost product with much simplified network installation is expected to transform agricultural monitoring and control from a high end niche capability to a check box feature of any new irrigation system. It's open architecture makes it easy to extend and customize. It achieves its lower cost by taking advantage of the intense competition going on between wireless technology providers which has now pushed the cost of the node core electronics below $40. Camalie Networks is now looking for partners to participate in early trials of this system. Please contact us if you are interested.
Commercial Deployment of eKo Pro Irrigation Management System
On 4/20/2012 a 15 node system with 12 eKo Pro valve actuators, 32 soil moisture sensors and 4 water meters were installed at Four Winds nursery just below the dam at Lake Berryessa. The system is being used in an experiment run by Prof. Delwiche and researcher Bob Coates at the University of California - Davis. The experiment is an exploration of the benefits of using full automation in nursery irrigation. Expected benefits are reduced water use, less leaching of chemicals from the pots into the soil, reduced labor cost and increased yields. The system executes soil moisture sensor dependent control rules in real time with irrigation cycles as short at 1 minute on 5 minute intervals. Data can be viewed and valves actuated from any web browser.
This new capability meets the requrements of California state law for large landscapes. See section 492.7 that states "Automatic irrigation controllers utilizing either evapotranspiration or soil moisture sensor data shall be required for irrigation scheduling in all irrigation systems. "
With the addition of actuation capability the eN2120 node power supply has been beefed up by doubling the battery set from 3 to 6 rechargeable AA batteries. The additional energy storage enables essentially unlimited actuations over as much as a 3 week sunless period. At the same time the solar panels were upgraded as well. All new units have these new features at no additional cost.
The dominant use of eKo Pro systems is for monitoring soil moisture and weather conditions to make the best irrigation decisions. Water use, flow rates and actual remote control of valves are capabilities added last year to the Camalie Networks line up of products. This year there are advancements in the software and reliability of the system as many systems have now been online in the field for over 3 years. The extensive field testing and characterization of the eKo Pro system is one of its major strengths relative to other suppliers in this space. The other major highlight of eKo Pro is its low cost enabling deployment of more stations per acre. Typical systems consist of 10 nodes with some containing as many as 35 nodes. No other wireless monitoring system is able to reach these sampling densities at an affordable cost.
The water metering capability was added to the Camalie Networks product line in August 2011 with the addition of the CN101-WM water meter interface. Four water meters and eKo Pro interfaces to those meters were installed at Green and Red Vineyards in the Chiles Valley. Photos from that installation are shown below along with the data taken in 2011. NRCS supported this installation.
Below is a plot of water use at Camalie Vineyards on Mt. Veeder captured using one of the new CN101wm watermeter interfaces to a standard Netafim water meter with a reed switch in the meter register. The orange curve is the cumulative volume used and the green curve the actual flow rates. One filter blockage event was spotted on 8/7/11 and quickly cleared.
This new user interface called CamView, developed by Camalie Networks does not use Adobe Flash technology and as a result it is readily viewable on iPhones and iPads. It also supports multiple graph dashboards to enable the fastest possible review of your vineyard status. This software which includes an independent database for storage of eKo Pro data can run on your eKo Pro Gateway or will run on any server in the "cloud". Running this software in the cloud provides faster access, ease of backup and lower cost software maintenance. This software is fully compatible with eKo View and runs in parallel with it requiring no modifications to eKo View. It uses sockets that eKo View provides to access a copy of eKo View's data stream. It is capable of monitoring multiple eKo Pro networks at the same time and graphing any or all of the data together. Currently one system is aggregating data from 12 eKo Pro networks spread out over the California North Coast.
Because the software is open source and free like Android the user community can enhance and maintain the software without dependence solely on Camalie Networks or Memsic. This model has proven to be very successful. You can find CamView on SourceForge. This is an early release and installation is fairly involved, not recommended for the average eKo Pro user. Rather it is intended for SysAdmins familiar with Linux webservers. Call if you are interested in using this software. 650-799-6571. Access to a working system for evaluation is available now.
Estimating Leaf Water Potentials from Soil Moisture and Vapor Pressure Deficit Data.
Links to Live eKo Pro Systems
eKo Alpha System Covering Camalie and Konrad Vineyards, 26-nodes
eKo View system at Camalie Vineyards also covering Konrad and Mt. Veeder Magic Vineyards, 32-nodes
CamView interface to 12 active Networks at different locations across the North Coast, total ~150 nodes
UC Berkeley Blue Oak Ranch Reserve 38 Nodes, CamView Dashboard
Sam Brannan Vineyards eKo Pro 8 nodes, Custom Camalie Networks interface CamView Dashboard
Terraces at Quarry Vineyards/ St. Helena 10 nodes, Custom Camalie Networks interface
Stage Coach Vineyards, Atlas Peak 18 nodes CamView Dashboard
Green and Red Vineyards Chiles Valley 11 Nodes, -- LWP correlation CamView Dashboard
Chris Bowen, Hunter Farms Vineyard Management, Sonoma, 4 nodes CamView Dashboard
Dave Brown, Brown Estate Napa 6 nodes CamView Dashboard
Breggo Vineyards BooneVille 6 Nodes
UC Davis Oakville Station, Prof. David Smart 9 nodes, on private UC Davis network
Four Winds Nursery 13 node system; Prof. Michael Delwiche UCDavis Research into labor savings of closed loop irrigation control
City of Hollister 4 Nodes; recycled water leaching monitor.
Australian Golf Course 8 Nodes
J.K. Engineering Ltd. Canadian Golf Course 10 Nodes Demonstrated lowest temperature performance of eKo Pro to date -40C!
Camalie House Mechanical System This is the original 433MHz prototype network deployed at Camalie in 2005. Still working.
Call for username and password to log on and try out the eKo View interface for yourself while browsing live data from real vineyards. 650-799-6571
A great article "New Networks Take Nature’s Pulse" in the Innovation section of the Christian Science Monitor was written by Lori Valigra about our wireless sensing. It was published January 23, 2009.
Wines and Vines published the article, Wireless Network Monitors H2O in July 2008 about our success in using wireless soil moisture sensing written by Tom Ulrich.
On June 19, 2008 Camalie founder Mark Holler presented a technical poster, High Density Wireless Soil Moisture Monitoring for Deficit Irrigation Management at the ASEV conference in Portland Oregon showing that less labor intensive soil moisture sensing can substitute for manual leaf water potential measurements.
Crossbow Technology introduced the eKo Pro Series Agricultural monitoring system in April 2008. It is a commercial version of the wireless sensor network developed at Camalie Vineyards.
Camalie Networks LLC was started up at the same time in April 2008 to sell, service and customize eKo Pro for viticulturists in the Napa Valley.
Mark Holler in the Camalie Networks server facility in Palo Alto.
David Smart, U.C. Davis, Oakville Station, Napa, eKo Pro 10 nodes
UpTick Vineyards eKo Pro 4 nodes
Brown Estate eKo Pro 7 nodes
Four Winds Nursery at Lake Berryessa, Prof. Delwiche UC Davis 15 nodes
Saracina Vineyards, Hopland, Ca. John Fetzer proprieter. eKo Pro 4 nodes.
Hollister Public Works Department, monitoring recycled water penetration toward groundwater in an irrigated ball field. eKo Pro system 4 nodes
Mount Veeder Magic Vineyards eKo Pro 8 nodes piggy backed on top of the Camalie Vineyards system.
Konrad Vineyards eKo Pro 9 node system piggy backed on top of the Camalie Vineyards system.
Ben Wizard, New Zealand
http://www.flow-aid.wur.nl/UK/ In the U.K. and Netherlands managing water for potted plants.
http://www.valledecasablanca.com/ In the Casablanca Valley in Chile growing grapes.
News Page 04/23/12
Camalie Networks Opened for Business in April of 2008.
Crossbow Technology Sold the eKo Pro Product Line to Memsic Inc. Dec. 16, 2009 Press Release