Fiber Optic Sensor Systems for Irrigation (FOSS4I)

Fiber optics sensor systems for irrigation (FOSS4I) is a research project to develop a system for optimized irrigation and use of pesticides, based on Fiber optics technologies. The project main goal is to build more sustainable agriculture, as it will enable water savings, increased crop yields, and reduced use of pesticides and fertilizers. To achieve this goal, an affordable multi sensing system of volumetric water content measurement and pesticide residue in soil is being developed and so far two proof of concepts have been tested for volumetric water content measurements in soil. As for pesticide detection, a new lab-on-fiber sensor is being designed to be tested in later phases. Moreover, two approaches for an affordable read out system was successfully tested. The proof of concepts sensors for volumetric water content uses fiber-optic sensors based on two different approaches one based on weighting technique and the other based on spectral measurements. This research program was launched by the UK Lebanon Tech Hub (UKLTH), which is funding the project and coordinating the different participating institutes and companies. CERN is part of this research project along with the University of Sannio, the Italian National Institute for Nuclear Physics (INFN) from Naples, the Optosmart and National Instruments companies, the Lebanese University, University of Saint Joseph and the Lebanese Agriculture Research Institute. This collaboration between institutes from several countries will allow knowledge transfer among different partners and will help build a more sustainable agriculture througha simple and affordable system allowing irrigation and pesticide usage optimization which will result in water saving and increase in crop yield.

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