Category Archives: Center Pivot Irrigation

Valmont and Prospera Technologies Announce Roadmap to Autonomous CropManagement Technology Through Global Partnership

February 20, 2019

Omaha, NE, Tel-Aviv, Israel and San Jose, CA: Valmont® Industries,Inc. (NYSE: VMI), a leading global provider of engineered products and services for infrastructure and irrigation equipment for agriculture and the parent company of Valley® Irrigation, and Prospera Technologies Inc., a leading Israeli machine vision and artificial intelligence (AI) company specializing in ag data, are pleased to announce their global partnership. The collaboration sets the course to provide growers with autonomous crop management solutions generating greater returns, while requiring fewer production inputs and resources.

 

“Valley Irrigation is transforming the center pivot from solely an irrigation machine to an autonomous crop management tool,” ValmontPresident and Chief Executive Officer Stephen G. Kaniewski commented. “Water remains our focus, as it is the number one determinant of crop yield. Growers who use pivots have a natural advantage to use them as often as needed, given their constant placement on the field. We can equip the structure to see what a grower may not be able to detect, arming them with critical information that delivers more crop precision, saving time, lowering costs and increasing yield.”

 

This exclusive global partnership is significant because it integrates artificial intelligence technologies with center pivot irrigation.Valley Irrigation leads the industry with more than 60,000 connected devices globally and carries distribution strength through the industry’s largest network of more than 500 dealers worldwide. The intelligence shared between these connected devices and the pivot, along with the integration of data science, machine-learning and AI, enables the two companies to develop real-time crop diagnoses and irrigation recommendations, resulting in greater returns for the grower.

 

Prospera, founded in2014, is a leading force in ag tech, committed to bringing advanced machine learning (ML) technology to the agriculture sector. Backed by strategic investors including Cisco, Qualcomm and Bessemer, Prospera has developed proven analytics, algorithms and data layering to provide growers with irrigation and crop growth recommendations. Prospera currently monitors over $5 billion of greenhouse production. The partnership between the two companies will build on Prospera’s unique technology, expanding application to large-scale fields.

 

Autonomous crop management will result in a self-learning machine, using inputs from the field and the grower to deliver proper water, fertigation and chemigation. Launching in the spring of 2019, Anomaly Detection is a fundamental building block for growers entering into AI functionality. Providing visual detection of anomalies or issues, this technology provides essential features to mitigate risks in the field, assisting the grower with their irrigation and crop management practices.It will be available from Valley for all brands of pivots through a subscription-based model.

 

Kaniewski said launching specific technology products to the market and product adoption are two critical steps on the journey toward autonomous crop management. The joint machine-learning technology is targeted to reach one million acres by 2020. To develop the technology, the two companies collectively plan to invest more than$40 million over the next three years.  

“Like Valley, Prospera is committed to giving growers moredata-based, actionable insights from the machines that span every inch of theirfields, while reducing potential risks that can harm crop production,” saidProspera Chief Executive Officer Daniel Koppel. “We areexcited to partner with Valley Irrigation, the industry leader trusted by growers,and their global network of dealers, working together to feed an expandingpopulation.”

Agricultural professionals can find out more about theValmont/Prospera partnership and resulting technology at World AgriTech in SanFrancisco, March 19-20, 2019.

About Valley Irrigation

Valley Irrigation founded the center pivot irrigation industry in 1954, and our brand is the worldwide leader in sales, service, quality and innovation. With historical sales of more than 250,000 center pivots and linears, Valmont-built equipment annually irrigates approximately 25 million acres (10 million hectares) around the world. We remain dedicated to providing innovative, precision irrigation solutions now and into the future. For more information, please visit www.valley-prospera.com

 

About Prospera

Prospera Technologies, Inc. isa developer of machine vision technologies that continuously monitor and analyze plant development, health and stress. Prospera captures multiple layers of climate and visual data from the crop field and provides actionable, easy-to-read insights to growers via mobile and web dashboards. Its team of world-class computer scientists, physicists and agronomists work with experienced agri-business leaders to meet growers where they are and revolutionize the way food is grown. For more information, please visit www.valley-prospera.com

 

About Valmont Industries Inc.

Valmont is a global leader, designing and manufacturing highly engineered products that support global infrastructure development and agricultural productivity. Its irrigation equipment and services for large-scale agriculture improves farm productivity while conserving fresh water resources. Its products for infrastructure serve highway, transportation, wireless communication, electric transmission, and industrial construction and energy markets. In addition, Valmont provides coatings services that protect against corrosion and improve the service lives of steel and other metal products. For more information, please visit www.valmont.com


NEW VFD Panels

Master electricians have been busy adding pivot circuits to a brand new ABB Irrigation VFD panel before its installed.  Notice no rats nest of wiring.

Everything is labeled and easily accessible.  ABB irrigation VFD panels have a very efficient and unique cooling system.  The panel enclosure is split in half, with the “hot” side of the drive being isolated from the electronics.

This allows heat out of the enclosure faster and keeps the inside of the electronics compartment much cleaner. 


Blast from the past

We were moving some manuals from the front counter to the upstairs storage room and found these pictures in one of the old Valley water drive books.  The date on the book was 1976, so these options represent some of the last versions of the water driven machines.  There are several of the reversible wipers still in use in our area.  The rubber tire option was probably a lot more rare, but still interesting.


Lockwood Center Pivot Rebuild

A Lockwood pivot got a new lease on life.  Upgraded riser pipe from the standard rope packing to a triple-lip rubber gasket.  A new upper elbow/flange, Valley-style j-pipe/mount, a new collector ring, and a new Pro2 panel with resolver and pressure transducer.  The water hook-up elbow was also customized down to 6″ to make the connection pipe one size.  This old pivot is back to “new” operational status for a fraction of what a new pivot point would have cost.


Irrigation Underground PVC Pipe

Ground is starting to freeze up here is Wisconsin.  A couple thousand feet of pipe left the yard and was installed before things got too hard.  Both jobs were 8″ 100# pipe.  Analyzing the entire project is critical before just burying the cheapest and smallest pipe.  Every install, machine, and location will require different planning to be the most efficient.  Larger pipe may cost slightly more in the beginning, but poor planning and too small of pipe will cost tens of thousands more in the long run.  If you want to have the most profitable irrigation system possible, give us a call. (715)-335-6368


*New* Nelson 3030 Rotating Sprinkler

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Nelson has released the new 3030 sprinkler.  This new design allows customer’s the ability to flush nozzles while still on the machine (dirty water applications), to shut off certain sprinklers, or install both above the pipe sprinklers and drop sprinkler combinations.  Perfect for watering both corn (Above pipe) and potatoes (Below the pipe) as crops rotate year to year.  The top sprinkler’s nozzle would be set to on, and the lower sprinkler set to off or vice versa.


Valley Precision Corner gets it done

Valley Irrigation growing a bumper crop of delicious Wisconsin Super Sweet Corn summer of 2016.  It is easy to see the difference where the irrigator reaches and on the edge of the field where it does not.