Dialog Enterprise in collaboration with Rubber Research Institute introduce IoT Solution to rubber plantations

Dialog Enterprise, the corporate ICT solution arm of Dialog Axiata PLC., in collaboration with the Rubber Research Institute of Sri Lanka & Dialog University of Moratuwa Research Laboratory, has devised an IoT-led implementation to assist local rubber plantations with their drying process of crepe rubber, keeping abreast with the latest trends in digitalization.

 “The solution enables continuous real-time monitoring of temperature and humidity inside the drying chambers, ensuring that optimal conditions are maintained at all times for harnessing the best of the yield”, states Dr. Susantha Siriwardena, Acting Director – of Rubber Research Institute, one of Sri Lankas’ premier research institutions.

“This helps us to identify operational deficiencies in the drying process and take proactive measures on time rendering multiple benefits such as shortening the drying period, assuring the quality of the product being dried, reduction of firewood used, etc.” he explained further. “This IoT solution can be used as a very effective and low-cost tool to achieve higher drying efficiency in any hot air-drying system through online monitoring and supervision of the drying process, and is not just limited to rubber drying,” added Dr. Siriwardena.

 Employing the latest Internet of Things (IoT) technology, the cloud-based Software-as-a-Service (Saas) solution operates on a centralized monitoring and administration platform, with customizable dashboards for displaying current status of environmental conditions. It also features graphical analysis with historical data and trend analytics for triggering instant alerts and notifications.

 “A milestone in our manufacturing process”, states Mr. Manoj Udugampola, Chief Operating Officer – Rubber of Pussellawa plantations Ltd. “Optimally controlled atmospheric conditions play a pivotal role in the manufacture of high-grade crepe rubber; and this solution that we have been presented by Dialog Enterprise enables us to remotely monitor the condition of the drying towers in real-time from anywhere.”

Considered to be the purest form of rubber, crepe rubber is graded visually and is, therefore, produced under finely controlled conditions. Insufficient or prolonged drying during the final stage of the manufacturing process often causes mold growth while excessive temperatures may lead to tackiness.  The rubber color, which is the prime factor in the assessment of quality in visually graded crepe rubber, is prone to discoloration due to various chemical reactions if the recommended drying temperature and humidity levels are not maintained. Therefore, to ensure that optimal conditions are maintained throughout for achieving high quality (crepe rubber 1X percentages), the connected IoT sensors can be configured for specific actions in predetermined/envisioned situations such as switching ON/OFF an exhaust fan based on temperature and humidity readings. This also ensures eco-friendly pluses such as saving on firewood.


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