The Next Farm Remote Irrigation Mesh (RIM) Controller is an irrigation controller that allows users to control individual irrigation sprinklers across any irrigation or effluent system. Each sprinkler in a grid can be controlled individually or as part of a group (i.e. paddock). This control allows farmers to maximize the efficiency of water usage while minimizing runoff. This reduces compliance costs and risks, particularly in areas of hill country operating fixed grid systems and those areas adjacent to water courses or prone to run off. Our system replaces the manual control of individual sprinklers, allowing farmers ease of access to tailor their irrigation schedules via their smartphone or laptop.
Users operate their irrigation controllers from our Next Farm Dashboard. The mesh communication network enables control of the irrigation system and will also allow future scaling of additional products and services. From the user dashboard irrigation schedules (time, number of sprinklers, duration, and repetition frequency) can be created, edited, and deleted as necessary. As conditions change throughout the season irrigation times or frequencies can be remotely adjusted to fit the current conditions. If stock are on a paddock, or a weather event is coming, jobs can be paused at the click of a button and resumed once the conditions improve.
RIM is programmed to complete unit checks, system checks, failsafe backups, and end of cycle pulsing to ensure valves are in the correct setting and units are communicating as usual to prevent resource wastage and consent violations. In the event of a network failure, the smart control units have a default timer mode to ensure application continues in their pre-set schedule.
The controllers have been designed to “plug and play” saving time and money in installation and programming thus allowing farmers to view and easily control their irrigation system from the desktop application. Since the batteries are charged through solar energy there is minimal yearly labour input for upkeep.