by October 8, 2010 0 comments

If there’s one device that has grown on us and is almost ubiquitous, it has to be the mobile phone. Of late, people have been trying to make use of its extensive reach and numbers to run almost anything under the sun. You have music players, cameras, email clients, games, remote controls, and quite a handful of apps that’ve been integrated with the plain old transceiver (mobile phone). Its long distance communication abilities have now been tapped to achieve something quite tangible and the one that touches the nerve center of the nation—agriculture. The device we are talking about, Nano Ganesh, is a mobile-based control circuit meant to power on/off the three-phase agri-pumps used by over 5 crore farmers across India to irrigate their fields. It has been developed by Ossian Agro
Automation, a Pune-based small enterprise pioneered by the vision of a kisan turned technovator, Santosh Ostwal. The concept is pretty simple and cost-effective. You need two low-cost GSM/CDMA mobile phones. Simply connect one within Nano Ganesh, which acts as a switching circuit for the AC drive. The other mobile is used by the farmer to communicate with the control circuit through DTMF signals. He needs to enter 3-digit codes in his mobile to either start or stop the pump. As the carrier technology is GSM or CDMA, it means the distance from which he can control the pump is theoretically limitless. The device sends back the status of power availability to the pump and the operating mode in the form of tones of varying frequency. By listening to these tones, a farmer can judge the status of the agriculture pump. The device itself costs less than a branded mobile phone.

The potential savings through this device are immense. To understand this, you must know that power supply in villages across India is erratic. Most of the times it is available only during the night. So, most farmers either travel kilometers from their homes or stay put in farms during odd hours to operate their pumps. Others deploy labourers who take charge of a group of pumps within an area. Any which way, this causes great hardships to these souls as they have to stay away from families and fall easy prey to human vices. Not to mention the fuel spent in traveling such distances.

The adoption rates in India as of now are low, however, we would love to hear from you in case you have had some experience with such devices or know of similar kinds of automation happening in India, that touch rural lives. Do write to us at with your experiences.Tech and Trends_ Nano-Ganesh

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