Off-Grid LoRaWAN masts for the agriculture sector

One of Leading Edge’s recent projects is working in collaboration with RADIX Group and Sensational Systems, to provide bespoke off-grid communication masts for Smart Rural within the agricultural sector. Digital connectivity is now making it possible to build all sorts of value driving applications in rural settings. From livestock tracking, monitoring soil conditions, temperature, water levels, moisture content and more.

LE-300 and bespoke solar panels

Leading Edge have proven to be an engaging, proactive and responsive company, meeting the challenges of collaboration with energy, ideas and a solution-focused approach to great success with RADIX.
Callum Milne - Managing Director RADIX

The technology behind the system is harnessing the power of Long Range Wide Area Networks (LoRaWAN) that can be installed anywhere and set up for an infinite number of applications and tasks within a range of 10-20km. The various array of sensors transmits data over a mesh network of LoRaWAN gateways deployed on RADIX base stations.

A bespoke control board and cabinet containing all the control equipment and battery storage has been specifically designed and assembled for the harshest of climates ranging from 60°C to -20°C. A typical LoRaWAN gateway and control equipment draws a continuous load of between 12-15W.

Leading Edge and RADIX have designed and manufactured bespoke 45W slim line vertically mounted solar modules, to keep wind loading on the panel to a minimum combining functionality and aesthetics. The clever vertical solar design provides less opportunity for snow or dirt to cover the surfaces, optimising solar yield to give a consistent power charge during the day (weather dependent), in combination with the LE-300 wind turbine creating a hybrid solution which will deliver battery charging throughout the year.

The LE-300’s excellent power production stems from an exceptionally low start-up wind speed and superb high wind speed output. The LE-300 wind turbine has a heritage that is based around reliability and durability and is precision engineered with only two moving parts so little maintenance is required during the turbine’s operating life. For harsher climates, the LE-v150 Extreme vertical axis wind turbine will be installed due to the turbines reliability and ability to survive wind gusts of 35m/s (80mph) or if the temperatures drops down to -40°C.

Powered by solar and wind, and installed on RADIX ground screw foundations, base stations can be located even in the most rural and hard-to-access areas, ensuring 100% coverage across entire networks. All sustainable and without damage to the environment and the complete solution can be installed and be up and running in just one day.

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