Soil sensor

Murata soil sensors are developed to continuously measure the conditions of many different agricultural environments.

The three-in-one package includes sensors for electrical conductivity (EC), moisture (volumetric water content (VWC)), and temperature, and is capable of measuring all three simultaneously in soil and underwater. Specifically, the industry’s first-ever nine-electrode EC sensor has multiple measuring patterns that help eliminate uncertainty.

Image of Soil sensor size comparison

Examples of soil sensor applications

  • Monitoring soil temperature, water content, and fertilizer content over the long term in agriculture
  • Controlling irrigation systems in agriculture
  • Monitoring water quality in rivers, lakes, and marshes over the long term
  • Controlling water quality in aquaculture ponds
  • Studying soil/water quality

Characteristics of Murata soil sensors

Murata soil sensors are developed to continuously monitor conditions in a wide variety of environments and situations. With three sensors in one package, Murata soil sensors are capable of simultaneously sensing electrical conductivity, water content, and temperature in soil, underwater, and in other environments.

Image of sensing target
Sensor size 132.5 × 27 × 16.2 mm
Top side view
Top side view image
Back side view
Back side view image

Key points about versatile, problem-solving Murata soil sensors

Simple interface

With three sensors in one package

High-precision moisture sensor

Resists impact of chloride ions and temperature extremes

High-precision EC sensor

Multiple electrodes for higher precision, pore water EC measurement

Sturdy structure for withstanding exposure to the elements

IP68 equivalent, embedded sensing elements protected by the package

Compatible with wireless systems

Low-voltage, low-electricity consumption

Versatile interface

UART, RS232E, RS485, SDI-12, RS485 MODBUS

Murata’s solutions to challenges in agricultural environments

Murata soil sensors are designed to provide solutions to challenges in agricultural environments.

Challenges in agricultural environments

Declining/aging working population in agriculture

Reliance on experience and instinct, inconsistent yields

Wasted resources (e.g. water, fertilizer)

Climate change-induced food resource crises

Murata soil sensor solutions for sustainable agriculture

There are many smart agricultural solutions to choose from, but only Murata soil sensors help users overcome the challenges of agricultural environments by visualizing the intuition of expert farmers, specifically their sense for the textures and tastes that the soil will yield.

Image of visualizing the intuition of expert farmers Source: Revised and added to an excerpt of Smart nogyo ga jitsugen suru arata na nogyo no sugata (New Forms of Agriculture Actualized by Smart Agriculture) (Yasufumi Miwa, The Japan Research Institute, Limited, January 2017)

Advantages of using soil sensors

Soil sensors analyze complex information about soil—where there is plenty of unexplored territory for data utilization among the numerous agricultural sensor systems—in clear detail.

  1. Sensors make it possible to equip soil with the optimal water and fertilizer content for crops, improving yields and quality.
  2. Sensors make it possible to share model data based on high-yield-producing data throughout regions, improving yields across wide areas. Additionally, sensors can help lower barriers for new farmers. This will make agriculture a more attractive industry, giving it a sustainability that allows it to be passed down to future generations.
  3. Sensor data and weather forecasts make it possible to create irrigation plans and reduce waste in the time-consuming, labor-intensive work of irrigating open fields.
  4. Sensors make it possible to supply proper amounts of water and fertilizer, preventing overuse of resources and pollution in soil, rivers, and oceans and helping to build sustainable environments.

Properly installed Murata soil sensors enable three-dimensional distribution measurement of soil conditions

When positioned on irrigation tubes, the sensors provide 3D distributions for water content and EC values in the soil. Optimal sensor positioning must be determined by considering all factors together, including the type of crop and positioning of irrigation tubes and seedlings.

Image 1 of using soil sensor
Image 2 of using soil sensor