4th UF Water Institute Symposium Abstract

Submitter's Name Kati Migliaccio
Session Name Stakeholder Engagement in Water Demand Management
Author(s) Kati Migliaccio,  University of Florida (Presenting Author)
  Clyde Fraisse,  University of Florida
  Kelly Morgan, University of Florida
  George Vellidis, University of Georgia
  Jose Andreis, University of Florida
  Improving irrigation using real-time information and smart apps
  The use of evapotranspiration (ET) to schedule irrigation is not a new concept; however ET integration into the irrigation scheduling process has not received wide spread implementation due to a disconnect between the ET (or weather) data, how to convert it into an irrigation schedule, and user implementation. The availability of real-time and forecast weather data with greater spatial resolution as well as the growing use of smart devices provide an opportunity to better connect data with users in an applicable format. New smart irrigation apps have been developed that are commodity specific for citrus, cotton, strawberry, and urban turf by a University of Florida and University of Georgia team. These apps use real-time data and user input to generate an irrigation schedule in units of time. Apps also send notifications to users regarding previous rainfall and forecasted probability of rainfall the day before a scheduled irrigation event. Apps were developed for iPad, iPhone, and Android devices. Typically, use of ET based technologies average 30 to 40% water savings compared to a time-based schedule; actual water savings with these commodity-specific apps are currently being measured. Use of these smart irrigation apps are expected to reduce total volumes of water applied resulting in water conservation and protection of water supplies from nutrient leaching while maintaining plant production.