Computronics Secures Exclusive Worldwide Licence from the University of Idaho USA

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During the past 5 years Computronics (ASX:CPS) has been working to perfect a precision centre pivot watering system. The work was supported by an Ausindustry R&D Start Grant and carried out in collaboration with the University of Georgia (UGA) in the United States.

The VRI (Variable Rate Irrigation) controller utilises a Farmscan 3000 controller and a GPS on the end of the travelling boom to precisely determine its position and thereby control the watering regime for soil types below. An average pivot ranges in size from a few hundred meters in length up to more than a kilometre and covers more than 100 hectares of land.

Up to now water has been applied at a uniform rate causing some areas to become boggy and others to be under watered whilst roadways and bush inclusions have been watered unnecessarily.

During the process of taking out Intellectual Property protection for the product it came to light that the University of Idaho USA had patented the concept earlier. As the University did not have a commercial product it was an opportune moment for a licensing agreement and an exclusive world wide licensing agreement was put in place.

“It was refreshing to see the commercially realistic attitude of the University of Idaho and its desire to enable its discoveries to be delivered to the market” says Ole Hansen CEO of the Company

Growing pressure on the worlds freshwater resources has prompted Craig Kvein Chairman of NESPAL (National Environmentally Sound Production Agriculture Laboratory) an annex of the UGA to lobby for an implementation plan for VRI in Georgia.

As a direct result there off Computronics has received the first order for 35 Farmscan 3000 VRI systems valued at approximately $200,000. With more than 10,000 centre pivot systems in Georgia alone and in excess of 200,000 in the United States there is a significant business opportunity arising.

“Farmscan is an integrated system of user-friendly monitoring, control and analysis tools, including GPS guidance and auto-steering technology, for optimum farming and the 3000 can be reprogrammed after watering is finished for use during harvesting or seeding”, says Ole Hansen.

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James Feehan