Kepware controls water supply for vineyards | Automation.com

Kepware controls water supply for vineyards

October 1, 2012 - Kepware Technologies announced a major water supplier for an Oregon vineyard project is now driving industrial automation with its comprehensive communications platform.  Helping SeVein Water Association “go with the flow,” Kepware is providing a system to help manage the water supply for more than 2,700 acres in Walla Walla Valley, OR. 

SeVein Water Association owns and manages the water delivery system and infrastructure for some of the most technologically advanced vineyard properties in Oregon.  Tapping more than 1,000 feet below the surface for water, the association owns, operates and maintains wells, pumps and motors responsible for delivering water to each vineyard owner’s property. 

“Water flow is the lifeblood of our business,” said Larry Wondra, SeVein Water Association.  “It quickly became clear that – to be successful - we needed to significantly streamline well management – ensuring all levels, flow totals and pressures are measured accurately.  If there’s any miscalculation in delivery, it can cause a crucial drop in quality for the years vintage.”

The water association set out to manage the supply of approximately 5 GPM per irrigated acre, to each site, at any given time.  Complicating matters are the large distances and dramatic elevation changes across each parcel. During the development process, the group estimated there was approximately 740 feet of total elevation change between highest and lowest points in the vineyard that needed water. 

As SeVein began to build the irrigation infrastructure, it put in place a delicate balance of Programmable Logic Controllers (PLC) to handle data integration and archiving, a wireless infrastructure to ensure off-site communications, and a centrally-controlled PC as the foundation.  When putting the infrastructure in place, the need for a comprehensive communications system immediately became clear.

For SeVein, the answer was found in Kepware’s KEPServerEX.  The solution is specifically engineered to connect disparate devices and applications – from plant control systems to enterprise information systems.  The flexible and scalable software is able to easily manage, monitor and control diverse automation devices and software applications.  Communications are managed through a robust platform that supports an array of open standards.

Further building out the system, the association installed solar-powered flow meters communicating via wireless RF at each site.  All flow data is sent back to the command center – permitting water usage to be closely monitored.  Adapting to the constantly changing demand for water, the team also installed Variable Frequency Drive (VFD) pump systems to ensure necessary flow.  A system for real-time alerts and alarms was enabled, and a centrally located station was constructed to feed information on weather patterns.

With Kepware, SeVein Water Association now has deeper insight into irrigation monitoring and control data.  The organization significantly streamlined data delivery, creating a major reduction in operational costs. 


About Kepware Technologies

Kepware Technologies, established in 1995, develops a wide range of communication and interoperability software solutions for the Automation industry. Our flexible and scalable solutions are for connecting, managing, monitoring, and controlling diverse automation devices and software applications. Our industry endorsed software solutions improve operations and decision-making throughout all levels of an organization. Kepware Technologies' mission is to be "Your Standard for Connectivity."
 

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