Nebraska Patent of the Month – February 2022

Agricultural industries are reliant on sensors to gather information to guide their practices. These sensors track both above and below ground conditions. Unfortunately, most often these subsurface sensors are quite limited. They typically have a limited range of data transmission, or are easily damaged during field operations. RealmFive, Inc. has developed an improved subsurface wireless sensor system to more effectively monitor your entire agricultural operation.

This system collects data through subsurface sensors including moisture, temperature, and electro-conductivity sensors.. The sensors collect data on subsurface material characteristics and then transmit this data to a data gateway. Transmission is done via LoRa which is a wireless radio technology proven to transmit small amounts of data reliably over long distances. Other radio waves are known to be absorbed and obstructed by certain crops such as corn. LoRa, on the other hand, is not impacted in these conditions. Alternative systems are also in place to transmit larger quantities of data when needed.

The sensors are powered via battery and solar power rather than in-ground power lines. This helps to simplify maintenance and prevent damage. The company is focused largely on making sense of the data we already gather. This led to the development of a self-contained data connectivity platform that makes this data as easy to access and understand as possible. Their platform integrates data to better understand how your overall operation is running as well as functionality at the lowest level. 

Are you developing new technology for an existing application? Did you know your development work could be eligible for the R&D Tax Credit and you can receive up to 14% back on your expenses? Even if your development isn’t successful your work may still qualify for R&D credits (i.e. you don’t need to have a patent to qualify). To find out more, please contact a Swanson Reed R&D Specialist today or check out our free online eligibility test.

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