ANAHEIM, Calif., Oct. 1, 2009 – A newly chartered California company – ClimateMinder, Inc. – offers farmers and greenhouse growers flexible new remote monitoring and control systems that help yield higher quality agricultural products, efficiency and energy savings by integrating digital sensors, software and wireless-networking technology.
ClimateMinder’s remote-environmental-monitoring system is delivered wirelessly in the field or greenhouse through an array of sensors, nodes and mobile data network components developed in conjunction with technology leaders Intel and Ericsson. Key data about monitored conditions are transmitted over wireless data networks to growers’ mobile phones, PDAs or computers, avoiding the need for wiring their fields or greenhouses.
ClimateMinder is being demonstrated this weekend at the Produce Marketing Association’s “Fresh Summit” International Convention & Exposition at the Anaheim Convention Center.
“ClimateMinder puts growers in control of the environmental and climate variables that affect the ultimate success of their production,” said company CEO Bulut Ersavas. “By monitoring and controlling to measured conditions, ClimateMinder can quickly alert growers to conditions that threaten their crops, such as extremes in temperature or moisture, and the need to take corrective action.
“Our system helps growers optimize growth patterns, increase their productivity and product quality, shorten time-to-market, save water and reduce cost for nutrients and pest control,” said Ersavas, who added that greenhouse operators using the technology to grow tomatoes in Turkey since 2007 achieved increased productivity by reducing energy and labor costs and saving time.
Closer to home, California agricultural solutions company GreenArch, Inc., is managing deployment of ClimateMinder systems in 80 acres of southern California strawberry fields in association with Norcal Harvesting, according to GreenArch production manager Mike Almasri. The goal: Optimizing the growing environment by measuring the amount of water and salt in the soil.
ClimateMinder is based on machine-to-machine (M2M) mobile mesh network technology that enables sensors deployed in open farm fields or greenhouses to identify and recognize each other on the network automatically, thus simplifying setup, installation, configuration and monitoring for growers. Sensors integrated by ClimateMinder measure key climatic conditions and parameters in the growing environment, including temperature, humidity, nutrients and others.
At the heart of the system is ClimateMinder’s patent-pending, GrowFlex™ technology, which consists of two elements -- a self-organizing, battery- or solar-powered sensor network in the field or greenhouse, and a wireless data connection to a cellular data network.
GrowFlex provides growers maximum flexibility. Unlike systems that require major field infrastructure, ClimateMinder does not require a PC or wiring in field or greenhouse facilities. A suite of environment sensors is available and has been certified for ClimateMinder.
The ClimateMinder system is designed to complement either low-tech or high-tech control systems installed in fields or greenhouses so that it can help growers control microclimates, provide supplemental controls for local conditions or growing practices and can be used for either food or ornamental crops.
The ClimateMinder concept was founded in the United States under the name Kodalfa and has proved successful for hundreds of businesses in the greenhouse-tomato-grower market in Turkey. Kodalfa recently returned to the U.S. market and incorporated as ClimateMinder; the new company is headquartered in Los Angeles.
Los Angeles-area software-engineering firm Partners 1993 has taken a minority stake in the company with investments in the form of cash and software-development services to expand the system’s mobile components to other M2M and handset devices and to integrate with key control systems in the U.S.
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ClimateMinder Inc. develops complete wireless-sensor-network solutions for smart agriculture and food industry applications. ClimateMinder’s inherently flexible software / hardware integration techniques resolve commercialization issues of sensor networks by optimizing efficiency and speeding up the development process. Large-scale distributed systems built with small-size and low-cost sensors are powerful tools for sensing activities and interacting with physical environment. Although sensor networks are very powerful, they present challenges like energy efficiency, data transfer reliability and scalability. ClimateMinder uses industry standards and its cutting edge technology to build reliable, manageable and energy-efficient sensor systems. It provides affordable, proven and dependable solutions by employing open standards and architectures.
About Partners 1993
Partners 1993 Inc., based in the Los Angeles suburb of Tujunga, Calif., is a software development and services company focused on mobile applications. It is a spinoff of the award-winning mobile product company, WebMessenger Inc., which was acquired in 2008. Since 1993, the company has delivered custom mobile, desktop, client/server, multimedia and scalable distributed web systems to both startup and public companies in the United States and in Europe. To learn more, click on http://www.partners1993.com