green spin – the Journey to Digital Farming

green spin develops applications and solutions for digitalisation and optimisation of processes in the agricultural sector. The company was founded in 2013 by three alumni/scientists from the Department of Geography of the University of Würzburg: Dr. Sebastian Fritsch, Clemens Delatrée, and Gunther Schorcht. Their main goal was and is to allow their customers to profit from the use of open geospatial data. The use of spatial data, e.g. from earth observation satellites, can help to improve agricultural systems everywhere in the world. This will be an important task because of the immense rise of the global population in the next decades.

After the spin-off from the university, green spin was incubated at the ESA BIC Bavaria between 2013 und 2015. The help they received and the contact they found during this period greatly helped them to move their main EO-based application forwards. Consequently they were able to launch their main application – mofato, the modern farmer’s tool – which is now successfully operating in Germany and Eastern Europe. Their strength is the combination of vast amounts of data with a smart method to filter them and put them in a useful und understandable front-end so that farmers and other users can benefit from the data. The output is helpful for every decision a farmer or agricultural entrepreneur must face.

The technology behind green spins’ solutions is based on four points: big data, scaling, speed and spatial intelligence. The algorithms used by green spin are capable of processing gigabyte after gigabyte of satellite, geo, and weather data every day. Powerful cloud technology, automation and real-time processing lead to flexibility and usefulness. Furthermore, physical process models and AI for their analyses make unparalleled spatial insights possible.

mofato – the entry point to smart farming

mofato, the modern farmer’s tool, is a simple and independent, web based tool that enables farmers access to digital farming. mofato is based on satellite & geo information and supports decisions throughout the agricultural season. Unlike other companies in the wide field of smart farming, green spin focuses on the jobs of the users and being an independent software provider. The technology itself is only secondary. That means the user always comes first. He should have the opportunity to improve his agricultural business with digital applications.

The clients of green spin have to deal with several challenges. For example, conducting field tests for pests on a random basis at individual locations is very complex and time-consuming. No matter if they grow maize or smaller arable crops such as wheat or rapeseed, it is difficult to get a reliable overview about what is going on in the field. Diverse terrain structure and huge areas – that makes it hard to manage an agricultural enterprise.

mofato provides a solution for this problem. It enables farmers and farm employees a permanent overview over the fields they take care of. They can reduce uncertainties and save time because they can detect problematic areas with the anomaly function of mofato. The result is that they are permanently informed about conditions of their own fields – every time and everywhere. Damages and losses can thus be reduced or prevented by early countermeasures, possible because mofato can automatically detect variances in the growth of the crops.

mofato also allows to generate digital application maps, which can be loaded and applied on machine terminals. An exact positioning system in combination with customised and analysed data permits machines to distribute materials such as fertiliser in a semi-automatic mode. By doing so, every part of the field gets exactly the amount of fertiliser or herbicides that it needs. This variable distribution reduces costs and optimises nutrient conditions for arable crops.

Consequently, mofato not only helps to save time and resources, it also helps to save the environment. It is important to understand and use the opportunities of digitisation in agriculture. This is the future way of food safety for an increasing population.

The next steps

In 2017, the team behind green spin is working on a permanent improvement of mofato. They are working closely together with users and specialists in the agricultural sector to fit mofato exactly to their needs. The goal is to connect different stakeholders from the sector via mofato. They are also involved in multiple projects with larger agricultural companies to help them with emerging challenges in digitisation. The support they receive from their mentor of the Copernicus Accelerator, and from the programme in general, immensely helps to focus on the relevant tasks ahead and gives them the opportunity to exchange ideas frequently. This is one of the reasons they are looking excitedly towards the rest of 2017.

www.greenspin.de

Dr. Sebastian Fritsch
CEO and Co-founder
green spin GmbH

Words from the Copernicus Accelerator Mentor: Agriculture is going to lead the next technology revolution. We’ve seen in the last years more and more investment in this field, programs and startups working with producers, farmers and greenhouses. mofato can play an important role in this field, their technology can help farmers to better manage their crops, increase productivity and help European agritech startups to be positioned as the main hub in the world.

Sebastian has been studying the field and working closely with farmers across Europe. He has been developing mofato at the same time he gathered the information from them. One of the key points of the project is that he has close access to the final user, this way, he can focus on giving added value to them. He was able to see the needs of this users and from there start developing the platform. There are a lot of challenges ahead, but the project is in the right path if we always count on the users and their needs.

It has been very interesting to see the evolution of the platform, how to turn SaaS into mobile and with the challenge implied of not losing the user experience of the platform. Nowadays between Sebastian and me, we are focusing on spot the main and most valuable features the platform has.

Karel Escobar
CEO
Tetuan Valley

About ESA Business Inucbation Centre Bavaria

The ESA BIC Bavaria seeks entrepreneurs using space technologies in a non-space environment. That does not mean rocket science, but applies to multiple application fields such as navigation and positioning, communications techniques, Earth observation, materials, processes, signals or robotics.

ESA’s Business Incubation Centre Bavaria was launched in 2009 and is since managed by Anwendungszentrum GmbH Oberpfaffenhofen (AZO). ESA BIC Bavaria and its renowned partners – DLR, Airbus Defence and Space, Fraunhofer IIS and Wirtschaftsförderungsgesellschaft Berchtesgadener Land – provide startups with financial and technical support at four branch offices: Oberpfaffenhofen, Ottobrunn, Nuremberg and Berchtesgadener Land.

ESA BIC Bavaria has four selection rounds each year. The next application deadline for the incubation programme is 14 June 2017. Apply now for ESA BIC Bavaria.

Matthias Engler is experienced in various forms of corporate communications, including both internal and external communications. As Content Marketing Manager at AZO his main professional expertise and passion lie in writing press releases, articles, stories and operating the social media channel communication. In addition he is responsible for the operative coordination of media partnerships.

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