Nigeria unveils space technology for agriculture

Chioma Eche, Abuja


Nigeria’s Minister of Science and Technology, Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu has said that the Ministry will continue to utilize space technology to boost vital sectors of the Nigerian Economy.

Dr. Onu disclosed this during the demonstration of the Automated Irrigation Technology Intervention System by the National Space Research and Development Agency in Abuja, the nation’s capital.

The Minister further said that the application of Space Technology will positively impact agriculture, national security, health services, education and manufacturing sector.

With this system, we can have agriculture all-year-around, and using solar to power the irrigation system it will help make young people show interest in farming. today we are growing more rice than we did previously and we are also making very important impact on other crops and it is very important for Nigerians to see that Space Science and technology is very important in helping Nigeria to achieve rapid economic development” he added.

Speaking further, Dr. Onu said that the application of space technology will also solve the drudgery of farming and enable young Nigerians to be self-reliant and boost Food security for the nation, adding that agencies of the Ministry are now poised to roll out more scientific inventions and innovations with Space technology and this latest innovation.

He also advised the National Research Space and Development Agency to delve into Artificial Intelligence and Robotics as a way of making Nigerian economy to be knowledge and innovation driven.

Earlier, the Director-General of National Space Research and Development Agency, Professor Mohammed Saidu said that Automated Irrigation Technology Intervention System will make agriculture smarter, precise and attract young ones to agriculture.

Professor Saidu added that the device had been tested on different types of soil from organic, sandy and clay soil in the last six months, adding that it can be controlled from the comfort of one’s home.

This product that operates in three months, you can be at the comfort of your home and irrigate your farm, you can go to the farm to irrigate it and also be automated in such a way that on its own without you doing anything it waters itt at a particular time and soil moisture level.

Between 8am and 9am for instance the system constantly checks the conditions of the soil and reports on the screen once the soil moisture gets below fifteen triggers up the pump and irrigates the whole farm and ones the soil level gets 50percent it shunts down, we do not have to be physically at the farm.

He called on the private sector to invest in the new technology and reap maximum financial dividends.