March 2019 Newsletter
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Top photo: The SkyTEM system flying over the Waikato collecting data to map the subsurface environment.
Bottom photos: The SkyTEM team set up the equipment for a series of flights.

Critical Pathways Programme 

In February 2019, the world-leading airborne SkyTEM system was used for the first time in New Zealand to characterise the subsurface environment. The texture and structure of this zone determines the availability and movement of groundwater through catchments. 

While surveys have been carried out internationally to map water resources for consumptive use (water for drinking, irrigation, etc.), the primary goal of our application was to gain understanding of the flow of water (and contaminants transported by it) from a parcel of land to a surface water body.  

Lincoln Agritech is leading a five-year Critical Pathways Programme (CPP) a research programme funded by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE). Responding to a well-recognised knowledge gap, it aims to elucidate the relatively shallow and short pathways operating at the sub-catchment scale, and to represent them in water flow and contaminant transfer models. 

Lincoln Agritech is collaborating with the Hydrogeophysics Group at Aarhus University (Denmark), who has developed the SkyTEM system. This partnership has enabled us to optimise the SkyTEM set-up specifically for our focus on the shallow subsurface environment (upper 20m below the ground surface). 

Two contrasting Waikato catchments, the Waiotapu Stream catchment (approx. 300 km2) and the Piako River headwater catchment (approx. 100 km2) were surveyed using SkyTEM, which took only seven flight days to complete. Using parallel flight paths (200 m apart) enabled us to get high-resolution data across the entire catchment areas. This starkly contrasts with the conventional approach that uses a limited number of point-scale lithology data (colour, texture, and composition) from the installation of groundwater bores. 

Lincoln Agritech’s Mike Friedel (Hydrogeophysicist and Environmental Data Analytics Science Leader) will lead the analysis of the ‘big data’ generated by the flights and provide colleague Scott Wilson with hydrogeophysical units for the realistic modelling of sub-catchment scale water flows and contaminant transfers. The research programme started in October 2018 and runs till October 2023.
Peter Barrowclough (Lincoln Agritech CEO) and Ran Maidan (Netafim CEO) at Netafim China’s National Conference.

IRRICADTM showcased at annual Netafim conference in China

Peter Barrowclough (CEO) and Zheng Wang (China Business Development Manager) travelled to Xiamen in February to attend the annual Chinese Netafim 2019 conference. Headquartered in Israel, Netafim is the world’s largest irrigation company with a presence in more than 30 countries and selling to 110 countries. Netafim is the Chinese distribution agent for IRRICAD, irrigation design software created and sold by Lincoln Agritech.

The China Netafim Conference was attended by 200 people and included Ran Maidan (Netafim CEO) and Ofer Oveed (Senior Vice President, Asia Pacific Division). The conference delegates discussed the developing Chinese irrigation design market. Barrowclough and Wang delivered their IRRICAD presentation, which highlighted Lincoln Agritech’s sales year in the region, the latest IRRICAD developments and how Netafim and Lincoln Agritech will work together to further develop the Chinese market.
Lincoln Agritech welcomes Dave Rankin

Dave has a Bachelor of Engineering and PhD in Electrical and Electronic Engineering from the University of Canterbury. 

He has a passion for business;  in 2004 he formed Indigo Systems, a successful start-up wireless communications company that produced various types of telemetry equipment. The company was acquired by CropLogic in 2014 and Dave became the Chief Technical Officer.

Dave has joined the Lincoln Technology Group as a Senior Research Scientist where he is developing the HydroMetrics surface water nitrate sensor.

He specialises in:
  • Advanced product development
  • Embedded hardware and software
  • System modelling
Outside of work, Dave has interests in space, rockets and the environment and can be found in his workshop prototyping and testing model rockets. 

You can contact Dave on: 
(p): +64 3 325 3710

Grow 2019: Boma Agri NZ Conference

The Ministry for Primary Industries is excited to announce its partnership with Boma New Zealand as Foundation Partner of the Grow 2019: Boma NZ Agri Summit.

The Summit—set for 10-11 April in Christchurch—features two days of future trends, innovation, and exponential changes coming to New Zealand's food and fibre sectors, with extremely practical, actionable takeaways for you to transform your business. 

Grow 2019 has an incredible line-up of international and national speakers already confirmed, and is designed for farmers, producers, innovators, researchers, educators, and government workers—anyone who has an interest in making Aotearoa's food and fibre sector more innovative, sustainable, collaborative and profitable now and into the future.

Early Bird tickets to Grow 2019 expire this Friday! Use this special network code LANetwork when you buy your ticket to save an extra $250. 
Dr Matthew Jones, CertusBio CEO, wins the AgriFutures evokeAG Investment Ready Pitch award in Melbourne.

Kiwi start-up bowls the Australians over

Christchurch start-up company CertusBio, recently won the top prize at the AgriFuturesTM evokeAG conference in Melbourne. Dr Matthew Jones’ winning concept is an automated technology, developed by Lincoln Agritech Ltd and commercialised by CertusBio, which reduces industrial food processing waste by 40 per cent.  

Over 1200 international agritechnology specialists, entrepreneurs, agribusiness leaders and support agencies attended the ‘Food Farm Future’ conference, held in February. The conference featured global keynote speakers, panel discussions, and a start-up alley where new businesses could pitch their business ideas to win prize money.

Dr Jones, CEO of CertusBio, pitched his lead product, Milk-Guard, a lactose monitoring device. The device is used to measure the percentage of dairy products present in waste streams and processing lines. Using this technology, dairy plant operators can improve resource and energy efficiency of their plant processes by reducing losses of valuable dairy products and ultimately increasing company profitability. Competing against five other finalists from Israel, NZ and Australia, Dr Jones won the Investment Ready Pitch, securing the AUD$20k in prize money.

To read more about this event, click here.
Learn more about IRRICAD.

IRRICAD releases YouTube videos 

IRRICAD™ is the global leader in irrigation design software, developed by irrigation engineers at Lincoln Agritech. IRRICAD is used for designing all types of pressurised irrigation systems from concept through to completion; it's the essential design package.

The program allows for rapid analysis of complex hydraulic systems, which facilitates faster design changes. The IRRICAD program comes with fully customisable databases from major irrigation suppliers.

Established in 1988, today IRRICAD is distributed globally and  sold to over 80 countries, including Australasia, North and South America, Europe, the Middle East and Asia.

IRRICAD recently released its first set of promotional videos online on YouTube. To learn more about the products click on the video above.
Lincoln Agritech welcomes Nuku Schueller

Nuku Schueller recently joined the New Materials Team as a Process Development Engineer. A recent graduate, Nuku has a Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) in Chemical and Process Engineering, with a minor in Bioprocess Engineering, and a Master of Engineering in Management degree from the University of Canterbury.
Nuku has completed placements at Synlait Milk and the School of Product Design at the University of Canterbury. In addition to his placements, Nuku has worked part-time as a tutor and data migrator at the University.

You can contact Nuku on: 
(p): +64 3 325 3794

Keep an eye out for us!

South Island Field Days
Lincoln Agritech will have a presence at the South Island Field Days (27-29 March). Come and find us at the Lincoln University tent and learn about our HydroMetrics nitrate sensor.

You can also learn more about our Sustainability Farming Fund research programmes at the Ballance marquee.

Groundswell 2019 Symposium
Lincoln Agritech staff will be speaking at the Groundswell Symposium (5 April 2019). The topics will cover improving our understanding of groundwater in New Zealand, including information, tools and research capacity. RSVP and find out more info here. It is free to attend.

Grow 2019: Boma NZ Agri Summit
The Boma Grow 2019 conference will be held between 10-11 April 2019. We will have an exhibition stand, so if you're there, come say hello.
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