Applications of Internet of Things Devices in Greenhouse Management and Sustainable Agriculture
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The Internet of Things (IoT) is a rapidly growing sector of the tech-industry that promises to make our lives easier and more productive. IoT has the power to utilize the interconnectedness of our modern society to perform tasks, as well as gather useful information about the way we live and the things we enjoy doing. While this may seem a scary concept to some, it can be utilized for good when given a driving purpose. With the goal of exploring sustainability and conservation initiatives, and finding intersectionality between these topics and computer science, I chose to utilize IoT to operate and collect data on an enclosed greenhouse environment called a hoop house. The device assembled was title as an IoT Weather Station and served the purpose of monitoring weather variables within the hoop house to aid in the growth of crops; an automated sprinkler system was employed to improve the usefulness of this device and to decrease the load on human workers as well. The IoT Weather Station was at first intended to be paired with an app. This would allow a user to operate the sprinkler system and view analytics on environmental variables (temperature, humidity, soil moisture) in the garden space. The end-product resulted in a functioning IoT device that could send data to, and receive commands from, the cloud. This project would be best described as a proof-of-concept, as it succeeded in performing all its major functions, though more work would have to be done to produce a marketable or effective IoT device. However, it can be seen from this concept and other studies done on automated greenhouse management, that relying on interconnected devices for productive solutions is viable.