WEAM4i project has facilitated, supported and speeded up the development and deployment of innovative solutions to water challenges by demonstrating them in 3 EU countries: Portugal, Spain and Germany. The project results can be grouped under 3 concepts:
1. The demonstration of resource efficiency solutions at farm and irrigation sector level, including irrigation advice based on soil moisture or leaf probes, alternative power supply for pivots, etc. In Germany, the optimisation of the high pressure systems has conducted to an increase between 10% and 30% in energy efficiency. In Spain, the application of Genetic Algorithms methods for defining the irrigation shifts in a collective network showed energy saving up to 5% just by shifting 3 fields in the current scheduling.
2. Under the smart grid approach, the demonstration in Portugal and Spain has showed between 10% to 20% of potential cost savings thanks to the introduction of water demand-side management for different energy contracts. In terms of cost saving, the weight of the water demand management is higher than the fact of changing energy contracts, and better results have been recorded when managing the irrigation shifts within a time window of five days rather than for one day.
3. The WEAM4i ICT platform has been demonstrated as operational prototype during two irrigation seasons for selected pilot areas in Germany, Spain and Portugal, covering a wide range of crops and energy markets. The open ICT cloud platform facilitates the integration local field data from different sources, provides weather forecast, remote sensing and energy market information services, and allows the deployment of applications for producing irrigation advice and other added value information for decision making.
Finally, the project has helped in creating market opportunities for these innovations both inside and outside Europe, by producing success cases and facilitating the development of close-to-market products and solutions for the involved partners.