The tools

Our learning method is to combine local experience with several simple monitoring tools.

The tools include:

  • The Chameleon sensor that measures soil water
  • The Chameleon Card, which manually reads a Chameleon sensor using a single LED
  • The Chameleon Wi-Fi Reader that reads a three sensor array, logs and stores data and sends it to the VIA online platform
  • The FullStop Wetting Front Detector (WFD) that captures a soil water sample for nitrate and salt monitoring
  • Nitrate test strips to monitor the nitrate levels in the root zone from a sample collected by the WFD
  • Electrical conductivity (salinity) to monitor irrigation water or a sample collected by WFD

Chameleon Soil Water Sensor

The Chameleon Soil Water Sensor measures how hard it is for plants to suck water out of the soil and the data is displayed as coloured lights.

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Chameleon Card

The Chameleon Card allows manual reading of single Chameleon Soil Water Sensors and shows soil water as blue, green or red on a single LED. 

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Chameleon Wi-Fi Reader

The Wi-Fi Reader measures a sensor array comprised of three Chameleon Soil Water Sensors and a temperature plus ID sensor. The Chameleon Reader can be used to read any number of sensor arrays, can log data and upload data to the VIA platform.

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FullStop Wetting Front Detector

The FullStop Wetting Front Detector tells you how deep water moves into the soil during and shortly after irrigation. It also captures a soil water solution sample which can be extracted using a syringe.

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Measuring Nutrients - Nitrate Test Strips

Nitrate test strips are used to indicate the amount of nitrate moving in the root zone. Nitrate (the main form of soluble nitrogen in soils) moves with water and is easily leached from the soil by over-irrigation.

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Measuring Salt - Chameleon EC meter

EC meters measure electrical conductivity and are used to show whether salt is building up in the root-zone (under irrigation) or being continually flushed out (over-irrigation).

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