SK Telecom has developed a new IoT-based solution which allows farmers to monitor the health of their cattle in real-time using Semtech’s LoRa devices and wireless radio frequency technology (LoRa Technology).
Dubbed “LiveCare”, the product is a LoRa-equipped biocapsule which is implanted into a cow’s gastrointestinal tract to monitor a variety of health indicators.
The new service will see biocapsules packed with a communication module connected to the operator’s LoRA-based IoT network. The smart biocapsule is then injected into the stomach of a cow, monitoring body temperature and potential hydrogen levels, with data recorded and then sent to a central server as well as cattle farm owners via a smartphone or computer.
Thus, ranchers can monitor the data transmitted from the devices for anomalies in a cow’s body temperature and other vitals to detect the onset of disease, estrus and to forecast delivery of calves.
The LiveCare device is shielded from being tampered with by outside conditions due to its strategic position inside the cow itself. This solution is expected to drastically improve the quality of life for the cow and by extension the cattle as a whole on the dairy farm.
“Our unique solution lets farmers know immediately when a cow’s health is compromised. It takes the guesswork out of farming and lets the rancher focus on preventing cattle disease,” said Taehee Moon, project leader for the small farm project group of SK Telecom. “Healthier cows mean more milk can be produced and dairy farms can focus more on growing their business.”
According to SK Telecom, a trial run on a South Korean farm using the technology showed an increase in annual milk harvest of 1,200 liters per cow, an increase of $1,100 in income per cow for the farmer and an additional $400 in savings for each estrus successfully planned using the LiveCare solution.
SK Telecom plans on extending its services to provide automatic notification to ranchers of contagious disease as well as location tracking in the near future.