Agricultural irrigation is a highly consuming activity of electricity (24,000 GWh/year in Southern Europe) and, of course, of water (70,000 Mm3/year). In the last years the price of electricity has increased dramatically (for example, in Spain 1250% from 2008 to 2013 for Irrigators Communities, in Portugal 226% and in Italy 32%), reducing the competitiveness of many agriculture productive initiatives. Moreover, the environmental impact associated to the scarcity of water is a major EU concern. In fact, in some areas of the Mediterranean cost, the water table falls 10 meters per year and it is already at 250 m deep. This is not the only environmental problem associated to productive irrigation. It is estimated that the CO2 emissions due to the consumption of electricity from fossil sources are more than 16 millions of tons of CO2, with a great impact in one of the major concerns of EU society: the climate change. The world of irrigation requires innovative solutions, less water and energy dependent, to face up this problem. MASLOWATEN project, funded from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme, under grant agreement No640771, will contribute to fill this gap. MASLOWATEN includes big companies in its consortium with enough capacity for the exploitation of the innovative solution. The consortium is led by the UPM (The Technical University of Madrid) and is composed of 13 members from different fields – irrigation communities, research, business, universities - from five European countries. The University of Evora, Portugal, and the University of Sassari, Italy, are among the partners. The general objective of MASLOWATEN project is the first application and market replication of a new green product consisting of Photovoltaic (PV) pumping systems for productive agriculture irrigation consuming zero conventional electricity and 30% less water. The solution makes this integration using automatisms, Information and Communications Technology (ICT) solutions and precision agriculture techniques. The cost reduction linked to the large-scale PV pumping systems will incentive the use of the systems for efficient use of water. Solar irradiation, wind and rain prediction are integrated in the PV systems. The control of electric valves and the measurement of the water supplied, automatic and simplified, guarantee the reduction of the irrigation water consumption. Soil humidity sensors are used to determine crop needs, by adopting precision agriculture techniques that consider the spatial variability of soil properties. The solutions are implemented in the following demonstrators: Cooperative “Estrella de San Juan”, Alaejos (Spain) devoted mainly to the cultivation of beetroots; Farm “Sarciofo”, Uri, Sardinia (Italy), devoted to the cultivation of artichoke; Farm “Sao Barnabé”, Alentejo (Portugal) and Farm “Soprolives”, in Tamelelt (Morocco), both devoted to the irrigation of olive trees.
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|Titolo:||THE MA_S_LO_WAT_EN PROJECT (HORIZON 2020) MARKET UPTAKE OF AN INNOVATIVE IRRIGATION SOLUTION BASED ON LOW WATER-ENERGY CONSUMPTION|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2016|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||1.5 Abstract in rivista|