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The internet of things takes the plunge

Bosch is supporting oyster farmers in Tasmania

  • Bosch investing in Australian start-up The Yield
  • System measures depth, salinity, temperature, and atmospheric pressure
  • Oyster farmers know exactly when to harvest
Bosch smart oyster farm

Hobard / Australia: Justin Goc is standing on the shore of Barilla Bay, an inlet fed by the Southern Ocean that surrounds Tasmania. Goc is an oyster farmer. The waters of the bay are not only home to millions of molluscs, but also an example of how the internet of things is changing our world. This has a lot to do with The Yield, in which Bosch was also involved as an investor. Headquartered in the Tasmanian capital Hobart, this new start-up wants to use the internet of things to make agriculture smarter: on the fields and under water, for example in oyster farming. As filter animals, oysters can quickly absorb contaminants from their environment – contaminants that are harmful for humans. In most countries, therefore, oyster harvesting is controlled by the public authorities, and may be suspended temporarily if there is cause for alarm. Reports of rainfall are often the basis for such decisions, since rainfall can cause contaminants to run off into the waterways where the oysters are grown.

Sensitive technology, tough environment

However, this meteorological data is often recorded hundreds of kilometers away, and is correspondingly inaccurate. But if harvesting is stopped unnecessarily, it can cost the oyster farmers a great deal of money in lost sales. There is now a new solution for pinpointing the rigtht time on harvesting. Oyster farmers such as Goc are now working with the Bosch ProSyst IoT platform. For this purpose, measuring stations have been installed in the immediate vicinity of the oyster banks. They measure the depth and salinity of the water, as well as temperature and atmospheric pressure. The algorithms developed by the start-up record and analyze the data, allowing farmers to check their computer or smartphone to find out the ideal time to harvest. The technology supplied by Bosch to the oyster project includes hardware, software, and real-time data management. As Jesse Reader, one of the Bosch associates involved in the project, points out, the company’s experience in the automotive industry proved to be of great benefit, since this is all about making sensitive technology function reliably in harsh environments. The public food safety authorities in Tasmania and New South Wales are now using the digital data provided by The Yield. As a result, it is now possible to reduce unnecessary closures by as much as 30 percent, which could potentially save the Australian oyster industry several millions of dollars a year.

Customers get everything from a single source

In addition, the collected data are supplied free of charge to scientific institutions, where they are used to combat the oyster diseases that can spell financial ruin for farmers and their operations. In Australia, Bosch and The Yield are already teaming up on further applications for smart – and thus more sustainable – agriculture, especially when the focus is on collecting and analyzing microclimatic data. To create a basis from which smart, connected solutions for agriculture can grow in Australia, Bosch has set up a dedicated unit within its Automotive Electronics (AE) division. “Bosch Electronics Australia develops connected sensor systems and manufactures the hardware to match,” says Oliver Wolst, who is responsible for AE business in Australia. “Quick implementation and obtaining everything from a single source is crucial for our customers. We are seeing a growing number of requests, particularly from the agricultural sector. Quite literally, a new business field is opening up here for Bosch.”

About Bosch

The Bosch Group is a leading global supplier of technology and services. It employs roughly 400,500 associates worldwide (as of December 31, 2017). According to preliminary figures, the company generated sales of 78 billion euros in 2017. Its operations are divided into four business sectors: Mobility Solutions, Industrial Technology, Consumer Goods, and Energy and Building Technology. As a leading IoT company, Bosch offers innovative solutions for smart homes, smart cities, connected mobility, and connected industry. It uses its expertise in sensor technology, software, and services, as well as its own IoT cloud, to offer its customers connected, cross-domain solutions from a single source. The Bosch Group’s strategic objective is to create solutions for a connected life, and to improve quality of life worldwide with products and services that are innovative and spark enthusiasm. In short, Bosch creates technology that is “Invented for life.” The Bosch Group comprises Robert Bosch GmbH and its roughly 450 subsidiaries and regional companies in some 60 countries. Including sales and service partners, Bosch’s global manufacturing, engineering, and sales network covers nearly every country in the world. The basis for the company’s future growth is its innovative strength. At 125 locations across the globe, Bosch employs 62,500 associates in research and development.

The company was set up in Stuttgart in 1886 by Robert Bosch (1861-1942) as “Workshop for Precision Mechanics and Electrical Engineering.” The special ownership structure of Robert Bosch GmbH guarantees the entrepreneurial freedom of the Bosch Group, making it possible for the company to plan over the long term and to undertake significant up-front investments in the safeguarding of its future. Ninety-two percent of the share capital of Robert Bosch GmbH is held by Robert Bosch Stiftung GmbH, a charitable foundation. The majority of voting rights are held by Robert Bosch Industrietreuhand KG, an industrial trust. The entrepreneurial ownership functions are carried out by the trust. The remaining shares are held by the Bosch family and by Robert Bosch GmbH.

Additional information is available online at www.bosch.com, iot.bosch.com,www.bosch-press.com, www.twitter.com/BoschPresse