Significance of IoT in the Agricultural Industry
Due to exponential surge in global population experts are predicting it to touch more than 10 billion by 2040 – this poses a giant problem for the agriculture industry. Despite combating challenges like extreme climate, rising global climate change, and farming’s environmental impact, the demand for more food has to be fulfilled. To satisfy these growing needs, agriculture has to communicate with new technology. New smart farming applications supported IoT technologies will enable the agriculture industry to effective farming. The Internet of Things (IoT) is changing towards horticulture industry and empowering Agronomists to contend with the tremendous difficulties they face. Agronomists can get enormous data and information about ongoing patterns and innovation utilizing IoT.
IoT can be of incredible assistance in improving the creation and yield in the farming division since it can be utilized to screen soil corrosiveness level, temperature, and different factors. Besides, keen farming will help in checking the animal’s efficiency and well-being too. IoT sensors are fit for giving ranchers data about harvest yields, precipitation, bug invasion and soil sustenance are important to the creation and offer exact information which can be utilized to improve cultivating methods after some time.
Some important IoT Applications in Agriculture
Precision Agriculture: Precision Agriculture is one of the most well-known utilization of IoT in the rural segment and various associations are utilizing this method around the globe. In this methodology a key part is its utilization and different things like sensors, control frameworks, apply autonomy, self-sufficient vehicles, mechanized equipment, variable rate innovation, etc.
Agricultural Drones: Drones are being utilized in farming so as to upgrade different agrarian practices. The ways ground-based and aeronautical based automation are being utilized in agribusiness which are crop well-being evaluation, water system, crop observing, crop showering, planting, and soil and field investigation. With the drone, we can collect data regarding plant counting/measurement field water, nitrogen status etc.
Livestock Monitoring: Now a day in cattle farming farm owners are using wireless IoT applications (sensors) to collect data regarding the location, well-being, and health of their cattle. It also reduces labour costs as ranchers can locate their cattle with the help of IoT based sensors.
Smart Greenhouses: Smart greenhouses are used in enhancing the yield of vegetables, fruits, crops, etc. For monitoring smart greenhouse, sensors measure the environmental constraints according to the plant requirement. It stores into the cloud server for remotely accessing the system when it is connected using IoT. The IoT sensors in the greenhouse provide information about light levels, humidity, pressure, and temperature.
Agriculture IoT architecture
It has basically four layers
- Device Layer: Device layer comprised of many devices like Drones, GPS, Sensors, Smart Phones, Connected Machines, Barcodes etc.
- Transformation Layer: Transformation layer incorporates the data transformation and protocol adapters.
- Data Processing Layer: Data Processing layer processes the data, device management, images, reporting, communication and dashboards.
- Application Layer: Application layer involves Resource efficiency, remote monitoring, tracking, remote visualization, predictive analytics and traceability.
IoT used multiple technologies like Near Field Communication (NFC), Bluetooth, WIFI, RFID, Sensor etc.
Why Testing is important in Agriculture IOT
In smart farming, everything is based on data accuracy & correctness. The conventional database system is not enough storage for the data collected from the IoT sensors, hence Cloud-based data storage and end-to-end IoT Platform plays an important role in the Smart Agriculture System.
These data are analyzed and transformed into meaningful information using analytics tools. It’s very important to verify Data correctness & Completeness, else incorrect information or prediction will come for end-user which will not fulfil the smart farming goals.
To fulfil these smart farming goals with data correctness and accuracy, testing for IoT applications and devices is very important. Testing types which is beneficial for IoT applications are:
Functional Testing: Functionality and Usability of application will be tested.
Integration Testing: Integration points, Upstream and Downstream apps will be tested.
Security Testing: Penetration, Certifications, Encryption/Decryption, Privacy will be tested.
Performance Testing: Peak, Double Peak and Endurance, Extreme data volume, Average will be measured.
Network Testing: Network, Size, Topology and Environment condition will be tested.
Compatibility Testing: Various OS, Devices, Browsers, Communication modes will be tested.
Compliance/Regulatory Testing: Compliance/Regulatory will be checked.
Upgrades Testing: Device, Firmware, OS, Hardware upgrades, OTA upgrades will be verified
Acceptance Testing: Both Functional and Non-Functional will be tested
Agriculture IoT Test Approach
- Test Strategy, Test Plan, Test Types, Environment, Software/Hardware, Protocols will be defined.
- Use Cases, Test Scenarios will be defined whereas Devices, Platforms, Browsers etc. will be identified.
- Tools, Simulators etc. will be implemented. Communication and computing infra will be recognized.
- Execution, Device Integration and End User verification will be done.
- Reporting and Incident Management will be processed.
Many testing tools both paid and open source are available. Some of them are IBM, Zephyr, REST/SOAP UI, HPE etc. To verify software, hardware, network, devices etc. of IoT app, a combination of multiple tools can be used.
To complete the future demand smart farming is a key factor. IoT smart agricultural applications are making it possible for farmers and scientist to collect meaningful data and then utilize it for the betterment of farmers.
Author: Ashish Kumar Srivastava