Text Size:-+

Motes In The Vineyard: The Next Big Thing

Start the Mission Impossible theme song and put on your night vision goggles, because spy technology is coming soon to a vineyard near you. OK maybe not spy technology per se, but a pretty cool new technology called wireless mesh sensor networks. I've written about them briefly before on Vinography, but they're apparently now ready for prime time.

A wireless mesh sensor network is basically a whole bunch of little sensors, sometimes known as "motes" or "nodes," about the size of a quarter that are placed in regular intervals anywhere from 30 to 500 feet apart in the vineyard. These sensors are wirelessly connected to the internet and to each other, and are capable of measuring temperature, moisture, and several other variables, depending on the installation. By aggregating the data from all of these sensors, vintners can get an idea of the micro-climates within the vineyard as well as the state of the overall vineyard. With more data, theoretically, comes the ability to make different decisions about when to water, fertilize, etc.

Will this make for better wine? Not sure. Like any new technology it can be used for evil as well as good. That is, I assume that winemakers and growers can get to the point where there are too many things to pay attention to or the possibility of just trying too hard. Some would say, and rightly so, we've been growing grapes pretty well for thousands of years.

Buy My Award-Winning Book!

small_final_covershot_dropshadow.jpg A wine book like no other. Photographs, essays, and wine recommendations. 2015 Roederer Award Winner.Learn more.

Follow Me On:

Twitter Instagram Delectable Flipboard Pinterest

Most Recent Entries

How to Help Lake County After the Fire Wine and Words in Three Volumes I'll Drink to That: Robert Bohr of Charlie Bird Vinography Images: Over a Barrel Warm Up: Sicilian Wine I'll Drink to That: Salvatore Geraci of Palari Vinography Unboxed: Week of September 27, 2015 Wine News: What I'm reading the Week of 9/27 The Lodi Zinfandel Revolution Continues I'll Drink to That: Master Sommelier Guy Stout

Favorite Posts From the Archives

Wine Will Never Smell the Same Again: Luca Turin and the Science of Scent Forlorn Hope: The Remarkable Wines of Matthew Rorick Debating Robert Parker At His Invitation Passopisciaro Winery, Etna, Sicily: Current Releases Should We Care What Winemakers Say? The Sweet Taste of Freedom: Austria's Ruster Ausbruch Wines 2009 Burgundy Vintage According to Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Charles Banks: The New Man Behind Mayacamas Wine from the Caldera: The Incredible Viticulture of Santorini Why Community Tasting Notes Sites Will Fail Chateau Rayas and the 2012 Vintage of Chateauneuf-du-Pape A Life Indomitable: The Wines of Casal Santa Maria, Portugal Bay Area Bordeaux: Tasting Santa Cruz Mountain Cabernets Forgotten Jewels: Reviving Chile's Old Vine Carignane The First-Timer's Guide to Les Trois Glorieuses of Hospices de Beaune

Archives by Month


Required Reading for Wine Lovers

The Oxford Companion to Wine by Jancis Robinson Wine Grapes The World Atlas of Wine by Hugh Johnson to cork or not to cork by George Taber reading between the vines by Terry Theise adventures on the wine route by Kermit Lynch Love By the Glass by Dorothy Gaiter & John Brecher Noble Rot by William Echikson The Science of Wine by Jamie Goode The Judgement of Paris by George Taber The Wine Bible by Karen MacNeil The Botanist and the Vintner by Christy Campbell The Emperor of Wine by Elin McCoy The Taste of Wine by Emile Peynaud