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Sensitive liberation

Technology

Skin cancer can be detected early by cell phone.

Now a Sri Lankan startup is protecting coconut trees by detecting red palm weevil when it attacks.

The parasite is responsible for the destruction of 10% of coconut trees globally as well as 30% of some other 40 types of palm species.

Highly sensitive, acoustic sensors are placed inside the trunks of trees. Thanks to AI, these perceive the insects’ feeding sound and findings are sent in real-time to plantation managers’ mobile devices.

Meaning the parasites can be targeted without excessive use of pesticides. An online platform allows managers to monitor entire plantations and maximise yields. Field trials coming soon.

Banana plantations, meanwhile, can be protected using image-based systems.

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