The Global Greenhouse Horticulture market has been growing exponentially because of population growth and rising demand for food, which is expected to increase by 100 percent by 2025, especially in the Americas, the EMEA and the APAC regions. In-door growing, one of the most heavily invested and realistically practical applications of the Horticulture market, is the answer to such demand.
Many factors contribute to the success of in-door farming, some of these factors include efficient use of water, energy, extensive crop protection and improved reduction in emissions
The increase in R&D in in-door farming thus far has led to advances in sensors, actuators, data acquirement modules and gateway technology, both in hardware and software; and by automating the data acquisition process of the variables that govern plant growth, in-door farming can be carried out efficiently and with minimal human intervention.
One of the leaders in providing solutions for indoor growing came to Lanner for a hardware solution on which their proprietary solution suites can be run for automating in-door farming’s water, energy, climate, waste, cultivation controls and labor management.
The ideal hardware appliance must ensure optimum automation of every process in in-door-farming, all the way from cultivation to harvest so that crop yields can be maximized, human intervention/water usage/energy waste can be minimized and data acquired can be insightfully analyzed.
The LEC-7233, measured at 152mm x 30mm x 143 mm, is a thin client gateway equipped with 3 GbE LAN ports, 4 DIO ports, 2 COM ports and wireless connectivity via the built-in mini-PCIe, making it the ideal multi-service communication gateway for manufacturing execution systems (MES). Powered by the dual-core Intel® Celeron® N2807 SoC (codenamed Bay Trail), this particular box PC offers the following features:
- Intel® HD Graphics
- 3x LAN & 2x COM
- 4x DI and 4x DO
- 1x USB3.0 & 2x USB2.0
- 1x HDMI Port (1920 x 1080)
- 1x mSATA
- 1x Full-sized Mini-PCIe Slot with SIM Slot for 3G/LTE Communication
- 1x Half-sized Mini-PCIe Slot for Wireless Communication
The LEC-7233 is this particular application scenario was deployed as the communication gateway for environment management, sunlight, rain water and fertilization management.
By way of the software solution suite provided by the system integrator, the LEC-7233 was made capable of automating the monitoring of rain water’s volume, pH value, quality, sunlight exposure and crop’s growth weight. Upon the collection and analysis of the said data and depending on the sunlight and evaporation rate, the in-door farming full solution would trigger, restrict or shut off water stabilization, disinfection, drainage and fertilization delivery.
From a even more holistic point of discussion, the LEC-7233 can be deployed for managing almost all environmental aspects within an in-door farming setting. Cloud management is enabled by connecting the LEC-7233 to various agricultural sensors and greenhouse equipment for collecting comprehensive sets of data concerning air, temperature, humidity, sunlight, soil pH value, irrigation and nutrient, ensuring optimal planting conditions.
The LEC-7233 is now in use in commercial in-door farming housed in multiple indoor growing facilities and inquiries for the LEC-7233 is increasing, thanks to its reliability and flexibility in in-door farming automation; this particular solution provider and their client are satisfied with the the LEC-7233’s performance and the outcome of its deployment, and are continuing to expand its use in their operations.