Applying the internet of things (IoT) for livestock tracking

Lisanne Stadig, Bart Ampe, Johan Criel, Laurence Claeys, Bas Rodenburg, Bert Reubens, Jarissa Maselyne, Jürgen Vangeyte, Frank Tuyttens

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingC3: Conference Abstractpeer-review


    IoT is the combination of sensors embedded in physical objects linked through networks. Already IoT technologies are providing solutions for quantified analytics on presence, proximity and positioning of humans and animals. The accuracy, the range, the battery duration as well as the costs are core features to select a specific IoT technology. Three types of tracking technologies are commonly used: (1) RFID and Bluetooth Low Energy with smart tags to map the presence of objects in discrete zones; (2) Ultra Wide Band (UWB) to track the position of subjects with a high precision in 3D; (3) GNSS and a low power, wide-area network for energy efficient outdoor positioning (>20 m). The latter is very well suited for outdoor animal tracking and has been commercialised (e.g. Stick'nTrack). However, it cannot be used for precise indoor and outdoor tracking. Therefore, the objective was to develop a system capable of accurately and precisely measuring animal positions in a dedicated area. ILVO and Sensolus are developing an outdoor and indoor location system based on UWB. This wireless technology for transmitting digital data at very high rates, using very low power is ideally suited for short-range and high-speed data transmissions in WPAN applications. The system calculates the position of tagged animals with high precision (<50cm) based on the time-of-flight principle between the tag and a set of fixed trackers in the field. The information received by the trackers is transferred to the cloud via a gateway in the field. When developing and setting up the system several adaptations were made to optimize it. The tag has to be robust and easily attachable without influencing the behaviour. There is a trade-off between battery size, lifetime and sampling rate. Changing weather conditions and the presence of animals and objects like trees or grass challenge the system. The first test results are promising. The system will be further validated and used within several use cases.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationProceedings of CIGR - AgEng 2016
    Number of pages1
    Place of PublicationAarhus
    PublisherAarhus University
    Publication date2016
    Publication statusPublished - 2016
    EventInternational Conference of Agricultural Engineering - Aarhus, Denmark
    Duration: 26-Jun-201629-Jun-2016

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