Projects

Monitoring all the slurry released annually from a farm using Near Infrared

Development of a technology to monitor the nutrient content (N, P, K) using NIR (Near Infrared) technology

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Photo of NIR technology measuring the NPK content of the slurry sucked into the tank
  • Pressupost total del projecte: 212.000,00 €

  • Data fi: 01/10/2018

    Data inici: 30/09/2020

Project Summary: 

In Catalonia, 64% of the regions already have areas declared as vulnerable by nitrates, transforming soils where cannot be applied more than 170 kg N/ha per year from livestock manure. One of the tools implemented to monitor the application of N in the soils is the incorporation of a remote-control system (via GPS) in the slurry tanks to record the information regarding the location of the catchment and the application. The new Decree on Livestock Manure implements a new improvement in the system for monitoring and controlling the application of manure through the incorporation of conductivity probes to the tanks to estimate the content of N and K applied, leaving behind the use of the theoretic reference values. However, conductivity is still not an exact or precise measure for determining the concentration of nutrients (N, P, K) in slurry. 

The development of a technology, based on NIR sensors (near-infrared Spectroscopy), linked to the already existing GPS monitoring of the tanks, would allow the distribution of the application of nutrients from livestock manure throughout the Catalan territory and especially, the amount of N, P and K that is generated in each of the farms. 

grup-solucions-manresa       cooperativa-plana-de-vic

Our role in the project: 

The BETA Technological Center is responsible for evaluating the technical viability of the technology by carrying out several tests on different farms and different types of slurry (fattening, mothers and closed cycle) during the collection of slurry from a real pond in a tank. In each test, the nutrient content (N:P:K) of several samples from the suction of the slurry catchment was evaluated. The Beta Technological Center was also responsible for determining the economic viability of the system in relation to the quality of the data obtained. 

 

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