5G Innovation Programme: Concept with Vitrum's participation receives funding from the federal government

09 March 2022

As part of a 5G innovation programme from the Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure (BMVI), Vitrum, as part of a consortium in the district of Uelzen, has achieved approval for implementation funding.

The consortium, consisting of the district of Uelzen, Ostfalia University of Applied Sciences, Vitrum GmbH, Agravis Raiffeisen AG, Comcross GmbH & Co KG and Lünecom GmbH, began work on implementing the project, which will run for 3 years, in January 2022.

The project deals with the optimisation of artificial irrigation on agricultural land. Data from soil moisture sensors and from multispectral cameras on drones are sent via a 5G campus network to a central application, which uses AI to generate a small-area-specific map of the moisture status of the plants and the soil in real time. This map can be used as evidence-based guidance for future autonomous irrigation technologies.

"The aim of the project is to test on experimental areas how irrigation can be optimised in terms of irrigation quantity and timing through the use of 5G. A database will be created in which data from various sensors, agricultural machines and other sources will flow together directly and be processed to derive an irrigation recommendation, which in turn can be passed on directly to the irrigation machine," explains Prof. Dr.-Ing. Klaus Röttcher from the Institute for Sustainable Irrigation and Water Management in Rural Areas (INBW) of the Faculty of Construction-Water-Soil at Ostfalia University in Suderburg.

The value generated by the project benefits the environment (e.g. also through potential reduction of nitrate contamination of groundwater), the interests of farmers and the authorities responsible for managing water resources.

The project is part of the digitalisation strategy of the district of Uelzen to shape the digital future in the region. The project is at the forefront of strengthening the future viability of the local and national economy, with great potential beyond national borders.

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