Universitas Brawijaya (UB) through the team of Innovation and Entrepreneurial Incubator Agency consisting of the Faculty of Computer Science, Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences and the Faculty of Agriculture Universitas Brawijaya collaborate to create products for climate monitoring in the UB Forest coffee plantation area to welcome the industry 4.0.
The head of innovation program team, Cahyo Prayogo, SP., MP., PhD. explained that technological developments need to be integrated with agriculture to optimize production and ease the farmers to take care of coffee plantations in UB Forest.
Cahyo explained that based on the survey results of PI team, UB Forest managers and the community, UB Forest’s coffee plantation has a land area of more than 400ha. To find out the growing conditions of coffee trees, farmers must look directly into the forest where the coffee trees are planted. With a very large land and located in the forest, farmers are not optimal in monitoring coffee trees.
“It has entered industry 4.0 now, agriculture and technology can no longer work independently, so collaboration between these two elements is needed,” said Cahyo. Cahyo also said, in line with the goal of Universitas Brawijaya which is to produce technological innovations, this team consists of 2 lecturers from the Faculty of Agriculture, Cahyo Prayogo, SP.MP.PhD, Ir. Didik Suprayogo, M.Sc., Ph.D., 1 MIPA lecturer Prof. Dr.Ing. Setyawan P. Sakti, M.Eng., 1 lecturer of Filkom Ir. Heru Nurwarsito, M. Kom., and 2 Filkom students Awang Satya Kusuma and Yusuf Putra Al-Azhar
Lecturer of the Faculty of Computer Science, Ir. Heru Nurwasito, M.kom also explained that building Internet of Things (IoT) technology could help farmers in monitoring the microclimate in coffee plantations. This IoT technology was developed by reading data remotely (remote sensing) using LoRa (Long Range) communication module and internet connection.
By conducting a field test using LoRa communication module, it can reach a distance of 750 m with hilly contours and forest groves in UB Forest, but if the condition is free of obstacles (line of sight) it can reach 5 km. The sensor node reading data consists of air humidity, air temperature, soil moisture, soil temperature and light intensity.
Heru added that this microclimate monitoring system consists of several sensor nodes and gateway nodes. There are 4 sensor nodes placed in the plantation area and 1 gateway node which is placed on a tower pole with a height of 12m in an open location near the prayer room area of UB Forest. The data is sent via internet to the server to be stored, the stored data is downloaded for further analysis for the evaluation of plantation crops, the real-time data of each node can also be monitored through the website.
“Technology for monitoring the microclimate of coffee plantations in the forest is a challenge, so we build the technology and we can. Even with this system, it can be applied to precision smart farming for agricultural land or certain areas,” said Heru firmly.
One of Filkom student representatives, Awang Satya Kusuma explained that building technology in the forest was not easy, since it was necessary to conduct a site survey, communication test between sensor nodes and gateway nodes, and test accurate readings of data.
“Challenges are always exist, especially when it comes to testing tools, but we are happy because it is good for us too, so we can grow,” said Awang.
According to UB Forest manager itself, the existence of technology to monitor the climate conditions of coffee plantations in the forest is very helpful and has a positive impact for farmers.
“Actually, there is already a tool from England, but we still have to enter the forest and have to download it there to take climate data, if we just monitor it through the website, it really helps us and shows that Indonesians are also not inferior,” said one of the managers of UB Forest.[ hnw/drn/Humas UB/ Trans. Iir]