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IoT catches on in New England fishing town

Michelle Davidson | Sept. 7, 2016
Businesses in and around New Bedford, Massachusetts, discover the power of IoT-enabled sensors to improve farming, fishing and even winemaking

IoT living labs in the New Bedford area

INEX, with cooperation with Dell and its IoT partners, have IoT living labs operating at 25 small and midsize enterprises. Some of the field-based pilots, include the following: 

Port of New Bedford

fish houses in new bedford port
IoT-enabled sensors monitor nighttime activity in the Port of New Bedford, providing persistent security for fish houses.

The Port of New Bedford has a blind spot. It cannot adequately see all activity coming in. This creates a security issue, but also a revenue issue because fish houses might under report landings and private boats might come in and not pay landing fees.

The solution is an IoT-enabled sensor powered by a Dell V5 gateway on the lighthouse. The gateway is like a data center in a box and can operate on its own—using Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, ZigBee wireless technology, and its own power source. Sensors can be added to the gateway to monitor a number of things.

Currently, the gateway on the lighthouse has a motion sensor. When the sensor detects a boat, it triggers an optical curtain in front of the blind spot in the port and video cameras start running, says Edward C Anthes-Washburn, executive director of the Harbor Development Commission.

This provides persistent security for fish houses, while also ensures the boats entering comply with the port’s rules and regulations.

“It’s a security service at night,” Rezendes said. “Think of it as ADT for your boat.”

In the future, the video created could be used to eliminate the paper invoicing fishing companies have to submit.

The project also has the capabilities to provide Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear (CBRN) sensors in multiple points, Rezendes said. 

Salt Creek Vineyard, South Dartmouth, Mass.

salt creek weather sensor 
The Salt Creek Vineyard uses IoT-enabled weather sensors and a Dell V5 gateway to remotely monitor humidity, sunlight hours, moisture and wind speed.

Farms like Salt Creek Vineyard have to manage several unique microclimates. The conditions in one field can be completely different from conditions in another. The wind, moisture and soil can all be different, which means crops must be cared for differently. 

Plus, the water level and quality of the vineyard’s well water must continuously be monitored to provide proper watering to the vines. One mistake could destroy the grapes and ruin the vines.

To help with this, Salt Creek, which is a 20-acre vineyard within a 130-acre farm, uses Dell’s V5 gateway and IoT technology in two locations.

Location 1:

Field 3 has a solar-powered Dell V5 gateway that has weather monitoring sensors.


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