"Possibilities for digitisation of irrigation".

Alfonso CorbalánCEO of Hidroconta


Lhe scarcity of water is a challenge when it comes to managing the resource, a twist in the script that has been seen for years and forces us to consider actions and improvements such as the digitalisation of irrigation, to optimise the profitability of crops with an efficient and sustainable use of water, which is fundamental for life and the creation of food.  

From Hidroconta we are working on the development of new technologies for the digitalisation of the water sectorThe latter accounts for 80% of the water available on the planet.  

The aim of the digital developments of Hidroconta is to receive the information that is being generated in a hydraulic installation in order to be able to analyse it and act accordingly, analysing the data for subsequent decision making, having notifications and process warnings, having greater operational efficiency and with the aim of achieving greater productivity and profitability. 

Hidroconta has different technologies for telemetry and remote control, equipping its equipment with the possibility of data communication, thus having a wide range of solutions for remote management of the hydraulic network. We work on innovation by incorporating state-of-the-art communications technology to water meters, manufacturing intelligent water meters, Spanish 100%.

We manufacture water meters capable of recording daily consumption data, which means going from 2 or 3 annual readings of water consumption of a meter to having around 9,000 annual readings.  

We accompany our clients in their project of digitalisation of irrigationOur strong point is our ability to adapt our own developments to the special needs of each of the challenges that we are faced with. During the more than 8 years that Hidroconta has been immersed in this field, we have been involved in several projects in the following areas digitalisation of irrigation in different parts of the world.  

In the international arena, it is worth highlighting the project carried out in Saudi Arabia to control water extraction by means of deep boreholes that irrigate an area of more than 40,000 ha through pivots of approximately 800 m in diameter.  

The main objective of the project in Saudi Arabia is to read the flow rates extracted from the boreholes and record them automatically and remotely. The essential requirements of the project are: accurate flow rate recording, permanent connection of the remote reading equipment, a complete solution in a single module, simple installation, weather resistance in extreme conditions due to the high temperature fluctuations in the desert and the effects of sandstorms and solar storms.


The two points to be resolved in the project are, on the one hand, the accurate reading of flow rates and, on the other hand, remote reading, recording of historical data and data visualisation. For flow rate reading, it was decided to use electromagnetic flowmeters of Hidroconta Hidromag in its version with separate converter and powered by 220 V AC. In order to achieve the remote reading and recording of historical data, the system was installed in the project. Demeter from Hidroconta with ending them Demeter 4H GPRS. 

The Demeter 4H is a remote management and monitoring device for hydrants and metering equipment related to water consumption and distribution. 

With the installation of autonomous Demeter GPRS terminals, it has been possible to monitor water abstractions from aquifers, with information accessible from anywhere in the world via the internet and updated in real time. 

On the other hand, at national level, Hidroconta deploys projects and supplies equipment for the digitalisation of irrigation, remote reading and remote control of consumption. 

There are several reasons why ?digitalisation is a real commitment of the irrigation communities? and has also been reflected in the PERTE of digitalisation by the Ministry for Ecological Transition and the Demographic Challenge (MITECO).

Remote reading of water meters is one of the key technologies being promoted in this programme, as it allows real-time monitoring of water consumption and improved management of water resources. 

The PERTE is a great opportunity for the irrigation sector. On the one hand, it will raise awareness of the need for efficient use of the resource and, on the other hand, it will encourage Irrigation Communities, Central Water User Boards, Groundwater User Communities, among others, to digitalise their farms.  

Digitised water meters with Iris in the Cota 400 district.


The Cota 400 Irrigation Community, located in the south of the peninsula, has already begun the digitalisation of its supply network. Motivated by the structural changes in the distribution of plots of land that have led to the installation of new individual water meters, which has multiplied the number of control points and has therefore made it more difficult to control the water supply network. of staff. The Community installs the IRIS system of Hidrocontawhich?allows the control and metering of individual meters through a system of teleprocessing.

IRIS is a communications module that incorporates into traditional water meters the capacity to communicate directly with a server that records, visualises and compares the data of the flow rates and volumes of water counted by the meter through a mobile APP or a WEB platform.  

To date, 420 units of the Iris remote management system have been installed in the Cota 400 Irrigation Community. 

In short, the digitalisation of flow recording equipment such as water meters or flowmeters is the solution to the new scenarios in the world of irrigation derived from the scarcity of water. In order to provide irrigation networks with intelligence, there are solutions that can be adapted to any scenario. Moreover, currently, the opportunity provided by the PERTE digitalisation thanks to the European Funds opens a window of opportunity to implement it. 

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